My Brother's Keeper Summer Camp

Rising 7th, 8th and 9th grade boys attended the first Lowcountry "My Brother’s Keeper" (MBK) summer camp Friday, July 22 and Saturday, July 23, at Charleston Southern University.  The event was endorsed by the City of Charleston and was hosted by SPAWAR Systems Center (SSC) Atlantic in collaboration with the Office of Naval Research, Charleston Southern University, Ladies Enriching the Community, Charleston Promise Neighborhood, Charleston Youth Leadership Council, Trident Technical College,  Advance Cyber Forensic Education Consortium, Google, NUCOR Steel Berkeley, Naval Health Clinic Charleston, and the Charleston Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. 

President Barack Obama issued a challenge to cities, towns, counties and tribes across the country to become “MBK Communities.” The challenge encourages communities to implement a cradle-to-college and career strategy for improving the life outcomes for young men of color. MBK goals are to ensure these young men enter school cognitively, physically, socially and emotionally ready; to ensure all youth graduate from high school and complete post-secondary education or training; to ensure all youth out of school are employed; and to ensure all youth remain safe from violent crime.  The camp is designed to help young men reach their full potential by empowering them to build opportunities for developing independence through education and career prospects. 

Incorporating the concept of a “whole being” event, Charleston Southern Buccaneers were on hand to discuss the importance of good and healthy nutrition. Eating a balanced diet is vital for good health and overall well-being, providing the energy, protein, essential fats, vitamins and minerals to live, grow and function properly. 

Good manners can mean the difference between success and failure in many aspects of life.  The camp featured a class on etiquette and a “dress for success” session. 

A special session of mentoring with the theme “Transitioning from Male-hood to Manhood” was offered by a combination of government, private industry and academic professionals.  Mentors have proven to be instrumental in helping young professionals build networks and gain invaluable insights that will help shape decisions essential for education choices and career development.

A course in Jr. Cyber Forensics, as well as Engineering 101, was offered to the boys to spark the interest in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) and explore the possibilities of education and careers in the STEM realm.

Students got a feel for college life by going on a tour and staying overnight at the university.  A special session was presented to parents who want to learn about various STEM degree opportunities and admission requirements.

“These young men are our potential pioneers, explorers and scientists of the future,” said Captain Scott Heller, commanding officer of SSC Atlantic, “and we want to fuel their ambitions.”


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