Tom Joyner Foundation Now Accepting Applications — Full Ride Scholarship Program for Graduating HS Seniors

Tom Joyner Foundation Now Accepting Applications — Full Ride Scholarship Program for Graduating HS Seniors

Tom Joyner Foundation Now Accepting Applications — Full Ride Scholarship Program for Graduating HS Seniors

— One student will win a scholarship to cover all expenses to an HBCU of their choice, joining an impressive group of previous “Full Ride” Scholars —

Tom Joyner Foundation

Dallas, TX — The Tom Joyner Foundation® announced the ‘Full Ride’ scholarship program that will cover all the expenses of one student planning to attend a Historically Black College and University (HBCU) in the fall of 2017. “The cost of a college education isn’t getting any cheaper,” said Tom Joyner, chairman of his Foundation and host of the top-ranked nationally syndicated Tom Joyner Morning show. “So, I want to help a graduating high school senior with a chance to attend a black college to pursue their dreams.”

Past Full Ride Scholars have impressive backgrounds, including last year’s winner, Morgan Taylor Brown, of Fayetteville, Ga., who is attending Spelman College, pursuing her interests to become a psychiatrist. In 2015, JoAnna Jones of Ashville, North Carolina’s Buncombe County Early College High School is attending Winston-Salem State University, where she is pursuing a degree in nursing. Another winner is Titus Zeigler, who was a top student at Atlanta’s Henry W. Grady High School. The future trauma surgeon was a member of the Junior ROTC program, tutored kids at a local middle school and volunteered at the Atlanta Food Bank.Blaine Robertson of Reserve, La. graduated from Howard University and he is pursuing his dream of teaching high school back home in Louisiana. Britney Wilson, a native of Brooklyn, N.Y., also graduated from Howard University and the University of Pennsylvania Law School. Wilson, who passed the New York Bar exam, participated in the Marvin M. Karpatkin Fellowship where she worked with the American Civil Liberties Union’s Racial Justice Program litigation team. Another one of our Full Ride Scholars Cheyenne Boyce graduated from Spelman College, where she was an international relations major who is fluent in Japanese. She spent a year working as a Fulbright Fellowship English Teaching Assistant (ETA) in Malaysia.

Students will receive full tuition and stipends for up to 10 semesters to cover on-campus room and board and books. Students must meet the required academic standards each semester to renew the funds each year. Graduating high school seniors can apply for the scholarship by going to the Tom Joyner Foundation website at

Students must have their schools mail their transcripts and recommendations to the Foundation at P.O. Box 630495, Irving, TX 75063-0495.

To be eligible, students must meet the following criteria:

1) A United States Citizen
2) Current high school seniors attending school in the United States (applicant must be anticipating completion of high school degree in the spring of 2017)
3) Minimum high school grade point average of 3.50 (on a 4.00 grade scale, excluding home school studies) and Minimum SAT score of 1400 (combined math essay and verbal score) or ACT score of 30.
4) Applicants must apply and be accepted to an HBCU by July 1, 2017.
5) Applicants must have demonstrated leadership abilities through participation in community service, extracurricular, or other activities.

The applications must be postmarked no later than January 20, 2017. Interviews will occur in March 2017.

For more information, contact Neil Foote, media relations, Tom Joyner Foundation,, 214-448-3765.

Women, Stop Listening to Sexist Relationship ‘Experts’

Women, Stop Listening to Sexist Relationship ‘Experts’

She Matters: If they’re men who hold shoddy views about sex and women, it follows that their advice to women will also be shoddy.

Tyrese; Rev. Run; Steve Harvey

I’ve spent several days thinking about Rev. Run, Tyrese, Amber Rose and their conversation about sexual consent on OWN’s It’s Not You, It’s Men. In short: Amber Rose had to explain that “no means no,” Tyrese talked about women’s sexual energy practically forcing men to “grope” them and Rev. Run threw in a heavy dose of respectability politics to justify men being disrespectful to women.

It was … troubling, to put it mildly. These two men, who are hosting a show about relationships, also wrote a best-selling book about relationships (hence the show), and there they sat, on national television, unable to grasp basic concepts like consent and that what a woman wears isn’t a pass to treat her badly or fondle her. These are the men, the supposed-to-be-enlightened ones, advising women about relationships? Seriously?

And while I’m disappointed—more so in Rev. Run than Tyrese, from whom, after years of shallow and misguided observations on social media, I’ve come to expect nothing—I’m not surprised by their sexism. It’s a common theme among men, including many so-called relationship experts. And that’s a huge problem.

It should be obvious why that’s an issue, but in case it isn’t: You have men who hold screwed-up views about sex and women telling women how to be better women to land a man. If the perspective with which they view women is shoddy, then it follows that their advice to women will also be shoddy.

Take, for instance, best-selling author Steve Harvey, who, despite the backlash he receives, does hit the mark sometimes. But when he misses? Honey! Harvey’s misogynistic gaffes were enough to inspire a popular YouTube compilation, “[S–t] Steve Harvey Says,” which has been viewed nearly 3 million times. Among the highlights? Harvey on why men cheat: “Because women allow them to” and because “women cheat with them.”

So, let me get this straight: A man cheating isn’t a man’s fault, and it’s no reflection on his moral compass or self-control and his lack of honesty or respect for his mate? He cheats because he’s absolutely not accountable and a woman allowed him?

Now, I’m confused because Harvey’s always talking about men being leaders (also sexist). If he’s a leader, then how is cheating “being allowed” by a woman? If a woman has the power to allow or not, isn’t she the actual leader? If so, give her the credit.

Harvey gets a lot of flak for his views because he’s the face of (black) relationship advice, but that sexist (and misogynistic) outlook trickles down to the Hotep experts who peddle their “advice” via Internet memes. You can barely open your browser or a social media app without encountering a photo of a semiattractive man next to a banal quote about what’s wrong with “females”­­—especially those with weaves; those who carry condoms in their purses (because God forbid a woman take the onus of protecting herself); those who are feminists or independent; those who aren’t “covered up”; and those who are single mothers (never a word critiquing single fathers ever)—and how each of these things makes them unworthy, unrespectable or, at best, incredibly flawed romantic partners.

What’s as bad as the bad advice from male experts is that relationship advice is rarely, if ever, aimed at men. Anytime a woman merely suggests to men that there are better ways to be a man, she’s swiftly and loudly told that a woman can’t tell a man how to be a man because women fundamentally don’t understand men. This is accepted as a universal truth.

So what exactly is it that gives men the inherent understanding of women to tell them how to be better women?

I’ll wait.

Riddle me this: Is it that men don’t need help when it comes to relationships, or is it that the entire onus of creating interest and maintaining a relationship is women’s work?

Here’s the big problem with this very popular line of thinking and all this relationship advice aimed at women: Women could listen to all of it—good and bad—become the so-called perfect woman and do everything men say they want, and relationships would still fail.

A modern relationship will not work when one person in it is perceived as, more or less, inferior, and that person isn’t financially dependent on a man for survival. Relationships will fail until men as a whole deal with their sexism. And they will fail until men as a collective put in the effort to build relationships and work on themselves, too.

Maybe we could all actually get somewhere better in our relationships if our experts did less trolling and started taking advice from women for a change or, even better, if they tried thinking like a woman.

Demetria Lucas D’Oyley is a contributing editor at The Root, a life coach and the author of Don’t Waste Your Pretty: The Go-to Guide for Making Smarter Decisions in Life & Love as well as A Belle in Brooklyn: The Go-to Girl for Advice on Living Your Best Single Life. She is also a blogger at, where she covers pop culture and travel. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram.

Obama and the Congressional Black Caucus: Allies and Foes

Obama and the Congressional Black Caucus: Allies and Foes

His Lasting Legacy: The election of the first black president was a historic moment of jubilation, but the relationship between black members of Congress and Obama was often strained.

President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama greet guests at the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation’s 46th Annual Legislative Conference on Sept. 17, 2016, in Washington, D.C.
President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama greet guests at the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation’s 46th Annual Legislative Conference on Sept. 17, 2016, in Washington, D.C.OLIVIER DOULIERY-POOL/GETTY IMAGES

“If Bill Clinton had been in the White House and had failed to address this problem, we probably would be marching on the White House. There is a less-volatile reaction in the CBC because nobody wants to do anything that would empower the people who hate the president.” —Rep. Emanuel Cleaver (D-Mo.), former chairman of the Congressional Black Caucus

When Barack Obama was elected president in 2008, the unprecedented event was a moment of jubilation and historic revelry for the members of the Congressional Black Caucus. What no one anticipated was the difficult relationship between the first black president and the then-42 members of the caucus.

To say that the CBC’s relationship with the first black president has had its peaks and valleys would be a vast understatement. Their relationship was primarily a tale of “one-way loyalty,” as Glen Ford defined it in Black Agenda Report in September 2009:

The president always maintained the clear upper hand by simply holding a much more powerful position than any member of Congress and more importantly by having an exultant status in the minds of many of their African-American constituents. The president also enjoyed the power of the bully pulpit, which, for a president with superior speaking ability, was a power larger than most commanders-in-chief.

The White House did not respond to requests for interviews about this story. The reluctance to discuss the relationship between Obama and the CBC wasn’t surprising, given the irony of the situation. Any look back at the CBC relationship, from the White House perspective, includes the fact that many senior CBC members did not endorse then-Sen. Obama for president in 2007. It also includes the reality of what happens when a political upstart bursts onto the scene without the years of friendship building that occur between members serving in Congress over many decades. Though members of the Congressional Black Caucus spoke in general terms on the CBC-Obama relationship for this piece­, many were reluctant to relive the more painful details.

The high point in the CBC-Obama relationship may have been right after his election, when the caucus, then led by Chairwoman Rep. Barbara Lee (D-Calif.), was meeting with members of the Obama administration on bread-and-butter issues. Soon the stimulus bill passed Congress (Democrats controlled both the House and the Senate). But by the end of 2009, the CBC and the president had had their first major confrontation.

It was over the allocation of Troubled Asset Relief Program money in the wake of the subprime-mortgage crisis. Ten members of the CBC on the committee of jurisdiction, the House Financial Services Committee, boycotted the vote, and President Obama had to send his then-Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel to Capitol Hill.

The CBC members were protesting the lack of financial support for black-owned financial institutions and other entities. They were also quick to notice the Obama administration’s willingness to support Wall Street over the needs of Main Street in the wake of the financial crisis.

Given that Obama supported a plan to bail out banks after the subprime-mortgage crisis—a plan created by two captains of Wall Street, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner and former Bush Treasury Secretary and Goldman Sachs executive Hank Paulson—some in the CBC were suspicious. The clash over how to deal with the subprime-mortgage crisis, which would cause a massive collapse of black wealth, led to the first strain in the relationship between the president and the CBC in the first year of his presidency.

“We have not been forceful enough in our efforts to protect the most vulnerable of our population,” said Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif)., representing one of the nation’s poorest districts. “We can no longer afford for our public policy to be defined by the worldview of Wall Street.”

Unlike what would happen in years to come, the first fight between the president and the CBC took place in the Rayburn House Office Building on Capitol Hill, out of sight from press. Members of the caucus were careful not to talk about the disagreement to the press because they were reluctant to be publicly critical of Obama.

A Fight Over Jobs

During Obama’s presidency, black members of Congress were often torn. Do they blindly support an icon of their African-American constituents, one whose face was hanging in church lobbies alongside that of Martin Luther King Jr.? Or do they react and speak out loudly on what they know is going on in their congressional districts day in and day out? Fairly or not, Obama’s time in office was often viewed as the best chance in years to confront many of the problems in black communities.

One of the biggest clashes between the president and the CBC happened over staggering black unemployment and jobs. The highest black unemployment rate in 27 years hit in September 2011. That year, black unemployment was over 16 percent—the highest since Ronald Reagan was president.

“If Bill Clinton had been in the White House and had failed to address this problem, we probably would be marching on the White House. There is a less-volatile reaction in the CBC because nobody wants to do anything that would empower the people who hate the president,” then-CBC Chairman Emanuel Cleaver (D-Mo.) said to a reporter at the time.

But two months earlier, in July 2011, Rep. John Conyers (D-Mich.), the most senior member of the CBC, did call for a march on the White House over the jobs issue.

“[In 1987] we passed the first bill that allowed the government—in areas of high unemployment—to directly intervene and create jobs. Well, we’ve got the bill in here again and I’ve got nothing from the White House,” Conyers said during a July 27, 2011, press conference on Capitol Hill.

“My goal was never to be skinny”

“My goal was never to be skinny”

RochelleCreate. Destroy. Rebuild. That’s the mantra that’s guided Rochelle Hoofatt’s body transformation over the years. The Tampa, Florida resident shares her inspiring story of weight loss and maintenance with below.

All of my life, I have been considered overweight or obese according to doctors, but I never let my weight define who I was. For a few years, my weight would fluctuate, but in 2013, my weight was at its highest point: 215 lbs.

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Coming from a Caribbean background, where the language of food is the staple form of communication, it was extremely difficult to live a healthy lifestyle. Anyone from the Caribbean can understand the pressure of family constantly criticizing your body, yet in the same breath, stress you to eat and feed you the tastiest, yet most unhealthy of meals.

When people would say “You need to lose weight,” and “You are too young to be this heavy,” I would ignore them and simply respond: “when I am ready to change, I will.”

There were several events that occurred within a year that ignited my fitness journey, indicating that I was finally ready to change. My transformation began when my friend and I decided we were going to participate, or “play mas” in Trinidad carnival.

Like most people, I had a goal to lose a certain amount of weight to look amazing in my costume, and that’s exactly what I did!


A few months later, I was graduating from the University of South Florida, and decided to keep the weight loss movement going. At that point, I was very proud of how I had changed mentally and physically, but knew I had the potential to accomplish so much more.

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Summer was quickly approaching and I made the life changing decision to participate in the most challenging summer program at MMFitness: Summer Soldiers. At that time, I was eating well, but I also realized that I needed someone to help take my nutrition to another level. Shey Webb, my nutritionist, showed me the importance of changing the types of food I eat on a weekly basis, and that healthy eating can actually be tasty.