Brother Garrett James leading the session on goals

Kappa Psi Chapter Helps Community Set and Achieve Goals

“Workshop Encourages Entrepreneurship and Wellness Among Millennials”

WASHINGTON, D.C. More than 40 people packed the room for the “Secure the Bag“ goals and success seminar held on Saturday January 27, 2017. Hosted by the DMV Sync Group, Kappa Psi Chapter served as one of the event partners and Brothers were present to share first hand experience on strategies that helped them become successful. The event was free and open to the public.

With an aim of helping members of the community set, achieve and maximize goals in 2018, the session taught participants the successful mindset needed and identified concrete strategies for success. In addition, the program discusses how to overcome barriers like negative self-talk and low self esteem, which often become obstacles on the route to achieving goals.

Kappa Psi member and DMV Sync Group founder, Brother Garrett James, led the session and said that securing the bag is synonymous with being successful. That ‘bag’ can also stand for Big Audacious Goals and everyone was encouraged to dream big and then create actionable steps to achieve those dreams.

“There are many future business owners in this room. Sessions like these give people the inspiration and also the tangible impartation to take their next steps,” James said. “The Brothers of Kappa Psi take this very seriously and are committed to doing what we can to help them in their journeys.”

Jasmine Bowden attended and had goals of expanding her network and polishing her professional development skills. She was able to connect with others and share the goals she created for 2018 in front of the group.

“As a fundraiser and entrepreneur, I hope everyone took away the true importance of Garrett’s “give more than you ask” approach,” she said. “I can attest that one’s biggest supporters are those you have built rapport with and know the dedication you have in mastering your craft.”

Hosting the event at a DC library was also a strategic move, said Brother James. “It’s our way of being planted in the community and giving residents access to our programming that would normally not have it.“

In addition to Kappa Psi Chapter, other partners were ShrinkMeNot and Write the Vision, LLC.

The Brothers of Kappa Psi Chapter are deeply invested in the total wellness of the community and we urge everyone to join us in playing active roles. For more information on the activities and service endeavors of the Kappa Psi Chapter of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc., please visit www.dcques.org.

Written by:

Bro. Garrett James | 3-SP08-TLL| LM #6184

Kappa Psi Chapter Communications Team

 

ABOUT KAPPA PSI CHAPTER:

Kappa Psi Chapter was founded in 1926 and since then has worked to uplift the community through social action programs and initiatives that address specific social needs.  Kappa Psi is also devoted to promoting academic excellence throughout metropolitan DC through student centered programs that highlight the achievements of DC youth. Stiving with the highest enthusiasm and commitment to uphold its Four Cardinal Principles of Manhood, Scholarship, Perseverance, and Uplift, Kappa Psi continues to serve the community of the District of Columbia as we are committed to continue to bring important community service projects in the District of Columbia.

Kappa Psi Chapter: Toy Drive and Delivery

Monday, January 15, 2018

 

Kappa Psi Chapter Annual Toy Drive

The Kappa Psi Chapter of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc. held its annual Christmas Toy Drive and Delivery.  Each year Kappa Psi selects a beneficiary school or organization for the funds and toys raised for the toy drive.  This year Kappa Psi partnered with the Aspire 2 Inspire (A2I) Foundation, Inc. to raise funds for the toys that were donated.  Led by Bro. Tamal Burise, Kappa Psi selected River Terrace Education Campus as the beneficiary school this year.  River Terrace Education Campus (hereafter referred to as River Terrace) is a city-wide school that serves the 1% of DCPS students with the most debilitating disabilities: the  with the debilitating disabilities i.e. autism, mobility impairments, etc. The center offers individualized wrap-care services for the special needs students that it serves.  

Brother Tamal Burise and his committee were charged with securing gifts for 120 students at River Terrace. Information on gift preferences was provided by Brother Luther “LJ” Sewel, who serves as vice principal at River Terrace. To meet this challenge, Kappa Psi partnered with the A2I Foundation to promote the toy drive and solicit tax-deductible donations from potential patrons.   

The brothers of Kappa Psi, along with our families and friends came together to celebrate the holidays and assist with gift wrapping and labeling.  This year’s program had an additional positive impact as Kappa Psi’s inaugural cohort of the DC Rhino’s Mentoring Program and their guardians joined the chapter in this endeavor.  Our mentees, along with their parents, worked side by side with the brothers to wrap the gifts to give back to the community.  After a splendid gift wrapping tutorial from Lucky Orphe, parent of 2 of the DC Rhinos, we wrapped and organized over 120 gifts in just under 2 hours!

Brother Burise and several others brothers of Kappa Psi Chapter delivered gifts to the students on December 21, 2017. The students and faculty were elated to see the brothers at their campus bearing gifts to brighten the holiday season for these students who are navigating this often cruel world with the additional burden of their various impairments.   Each student was called by name to receive their personalized gift. The air was thick with excitement and gratitude.

Kappa Psi is especially proud of this year’s Toy Drive. Our impact this year was two-fold.  We were able to both enhance the holidays for the River Terrace Students and show the mentees of the DC Rhinos Mentoring Program the importance and value of giving back.

Kappa Psi Chapter’s DC Rhinos Manhood Mentorship Event

Monday, January 15TH, 2018

 

Kappa Psi Chapter’s DC Rhinos Manhood Mentorship Event

Mentees Educated on the Prevention of Sexual Misconduct

The DC Rhinos Manhood Event on December 16th, 2017 at the Washington, DC fraternity house located at 1231 Harvard St. NW was another resounding success for Kappa Psi Chapter of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc.’s DC Rhinos Mentorship Program. With support from the Aspire 2 Inspire Foundation, the Kappa Psi Chapter has developed this flagship mentoring program to positively impact the lives of young men in the DC area.

This event was guided profoundly by the spirit of our eternal shrine. The mentees were ushered into a comprehensive understanding of what it means to become good Black men. In a society that is designed to prevent their ascension into their Manhood such lessons are of paramount importance. Through a variety of exercises the mentees were bequeathed the gift of an implicit understanding of the behaviors befitting wholesome Black Men. Maximal interaction between mentees and their present examples of exceptional Black Manhood, the good brothers of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc. present at the mentorship event, was facilitated by the design of leading Brother Brian Haley and his committee of Kappa Psi Chapter brothers. No topic essential to the mentees understanding of the full scope of the responsibility inherent to their burgeoning Manhood was left unexamined; financial literacy, chivalry, character, and upright, forward-looking behavior were the orders of the day.

Particular attention was paid to proper intergender behaviors. Given recent headlines and the nationwide coming into consciousness of the vast disconnect between the way women demand and deserve to be treated in and outside of the workplace, and the way that inferior men by and large choose to treat them, the brothers on the planning committee wisely planned to devote extra attention and effort to the dissemination of information regarding appropriate behaviors. The mentees participated enthusiastically in this discussion, reinforcing each other on excellent behaviors and denouncing misbehavior with vehemence and passion. One could feel attitudes shifting further towards benevolent respect of women under all circumstances even in those mentees who appeared to have come into the gathering with mainstream U.S. media influenced poor characterizations of the appropriate way of interacting with girls and women. Brothers also took special care to impart to the mentees the astronomically significant long-term impact of a college scholarship on life after university. Spiritual and emotional well-being were not excluded, and mentees were exposed to ideas about how to achieve and maintain pristine equanimity in various types of conflict.

During a concluding section called “Transformations,” Brother Haley presented the mentees with a series of useful mantra and poems for the maintenance of a positive psychology and an orientation towards achievement. The mentees were rapt by the brother’s recitations of “A Minute” by Brother Benjamin E. Mays and Edgar Guest’s “See it Through;” many took pains to transcribe copies of the poems to take home with them for further in depth study.

The futures these mentees have to look forward to are indubitably transformed for the better by the information gleaned during the proceedings. They were usefully inoculated against the wider American society’s persistent attempts to grow Black boys into something less than impeccable young Black men; this small dose of prevention will prove worth a pound of any later attempts at a cure. As the highly esteemed  and venerated Frederick Douglass once said, “it is easier to build strong children than to repair broken men.”

The DC Rhinos mentees have proven themselves again and again to be strong men in the making under the tutelage of the Omega men entrusted as their wardens. The manner in which the mentees quickly adopted the information they were given and began to discuss it amongst themselves, jockeying to be the one who most exhibited the greatest characteristics of Manhood as taught by the brothers, inspired great hope for the future. Long after they have departed from the day’s session these young men will carry forward these learned principles, spreading them out, expounding upon them, and living greater lives for it. In so doing they will uplift not just themselves but their race and their greater world.

Omega Psi Phi Fraternity Inc., DC Chapters Achievement Week 2017

Washington D.C.- On November 11, 2017, the District of Columbia, Chapters Achievement Week program was held at the La Fontaine Bleue, Koran Ballroom. The ballroom was filled with brothers from the various chapters, family , friends and honored guest.  The highlight of the afternoon was listening to the powerful life journey of the Alpha Omega Chapter's Citizen of the Year, Mr. Cortez McDaniel. Here is his story:

Mr. Cortez McDaniel was born in Radford, Va. Attended Christiansburg High School where he starred in football. While he was recruited to play football at Va. Tech University, he sustained a major hip injury that ended his playing career. He did attend Va. Tech University for one year and went on to attend Roanoke College for two years.After leaving college, Mr. McDaniel lost his way and his life took turn to the dark side. He came to the DC area and was deep into the drug world. These life choices placed Mr. McDaniel under incarceration, which ultimately lasted for 18 years. It was while in prison in Aston, Kentucky that Mr. McDaniel continued his studies, and ultimately obtained his degree. He did so through a program offered by the Univ. of Kentucky. After moving around the system, McDaniel realized that he had to change.

It was while in prison in Petersburg, Virginia, through much self-assessment, that he wrote the Recidivism Prevention Workbook. This changed his life. His case worker pitched this book to the Warden, who agreed that SHE should teach it. She made clear that it was the work of Mr. McDaniel and insisted that HE should teach it! The warden finally agreed, and Mr. McDaniel began teaching this course to the inmates.The class was such a success that Mr. McDaniel over 350 guys a year for about 3 years, so in total over 1,000 guys were taught and benefited from this course. The course actually became a requirement for guys to get paroled.Once Mr. McDaniel himself was released, he came back to DC and found himself homeless. Given that Mr. McDaniel did not have the services he thought he needed to get back into society and become a productive citizen, he became the founder of the National Homecomers Academy in 2006. The Academy focused on helping ex-cons perform introspection with a goal of integrating back into society. He then worked at a center off of Benning Rd in SE DC called the "Make a Difference House", which opened in 2008. He managed this program for 2 yrs.While working here, it was a woman by the name of Sister Sarah Joseph who asked for someone to come speak at Father McKenna Center (FMC) in February of 2009. Once he spoke at the FMC, the then Director of the Center hired him on the spot to manage the Hypothermia Program. This program houses about 20 men during the hypothermia season that runs from November thru April. This program, largely because of the efforts of Mr. Cortez, has about a 70% success rate in terms of matriculating men back into productive citizens.

Mr. McDaniel continues to teach his Recidivism Prevention Workshop 4 times a year. This class consists of six 90 minute lessons. The participants receive a certificate of completion if they attend every class. Roughly 200 men have completed this course through the FMC.He currently serves as Director of Services at FMC. His current duties include managing the Kitchen staff, managing the Janitor staff, managing 2 Staff assistants, managing the clothing closet as well as overseeing daily operations of the FMC. Mr. McDaniel is also the primary Case Manager for the FMC, which requires him to have individual consultations with the clients (homeless men) and to maintain files for these clients (on average of 15 men a day).

Prior to his time at the FMC, Mr. McDaniel worked for Second Genesis Inc. as Certified Addictions Counselor. Mr. McDaniel has also served as a Community Change Agent for the Phelps-Stokes National Homecomers Academy and is co-founder of The DC Peace Team. Mr. McDaniel is a certified Instructor of Violence Reduction and Conflict Resolution and has been happily married for 20 years.

The Washington DC Chapters esteemed awardees are as follows:

ESSAY CONTEST PRESENTATION: MS. TAYLOR L. JOHNSON- SENIOR, EDMUND BURKE HIGH SCHOOL

 

CITIZEN OF THE YEAR: MR. CORTEZ MCDANIEL- DIRECTOR OF MEN’S PROGRAM & SERVICES, THE FATHER MCKENNA CENTER

CITIZEN OF THE YEAR: MR. RAHMAN BANCH- EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, DC OFFICE OF AFRICAN AMERICAN AFFAIRS

 

COLONEL CHARLES YOUNG MILITARY LEADERSHIP AWARD

KAPPA PSI CHAPTER- BRO. CHUKWUDI URAIH

 

SUPERIOR SERVICE AWARD

ALPHA CHAPTER- BRO. JALEEL J. BROWN

OMICRON GAMMA CHAPTER- BRO. LAQUINTE HILL

KAPPA PSI CHAPTER- BRO. JAVIN RUDOLPH III

ALPHA OMEGA CHAPTER- BRO. CHER’ DELRAY BROWN

 

FOUNDERS LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT AWARD

KAPPA PSI CHAPTER- BRO. ANTHONY B. BURLEY

ALPHA OMEGA CHAPTER- BRO. KENNETH A. BROWN

 

OMEGA MAN OF THE YEAR AWARD

ALPHA CHAPTER- BRO. JALEEL J. BROWN

OMICRON GAMMA CHAPTER- BRO. TERRENCE PROTER, JR.

KAPPA PSI CHAPTER- BRO. GLEN B. YONKERS, JR.

ALPHA OMEGA CHAPTER- BRO. DONALD G. LUCAS

 

The men of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity Incorporated are proud to acknowledge Mr. Cortez McDaniel a shinning example to the very people he now serves at the Father McKenna Center in Washington D.C,.  Congratulations to all the winners and to our Fraternity's impact on the Community we Serve!

 

Article prepared by:

Bro. C. Delray Brown

Alpha Omega Chapter Reporter

"Ques In Action News"

Kappa Psi’s DC Rhinos Prepare for STEM Careers

Kappa Psi's DC Rhinos Prepare for STEM Careers

Aspire 2 Inspire Mentorship Program's STEM Career Preparation Event "Electrifying"

 

Washington, District of Columbia Led by Brothers Melvin Stalings Jr. and W.J. Williams, Jr., the DC Rhinos STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) Career Preparation event was another success for Kappa Psi's mentorship program. Brother Melvin gripped the students with his opening presentation, a primer on electric cars like those built by Tesla Motors. He spoke on the technologies that makes the cars run and their future potential. The mentees then got to get their hands dirty working on projects that would help them conceptualize themselves as the architects of such a vehicle.

Mentees were split into groups of five and given 25 minutes to build a four-wheel car out of candies and cookies. The car had to be able to roll down a plank without stopping or splitting apart. Brothers supplied the groups guidance with the non-technical aspects of the project, providing coaching on teamwork, patience, and perseverance. The project was difficult and many of the mentees experienced frustration; each group had several models that failed, and the temptation of the sugary foods was a constant potential distraction, requiring mentees exhibit even higher level of focus in order to progress. Omega men were on hand to give encouragement and support and see to it that the mentees did not become despondent, however as leading mentees took charge of their groups and the possibility of success came within reach, the Rhinos began to uplift their own low morale group members and charge towards the finish line. Despite the many challenges and temptations, the mentees predominately completed their task of rolling their car down the plank - to the exited cheers of the onlooking spectators. Overcoming their initial doubts, pushing through their failures and persevering through their various challenges and missteps to complete what initially seemed to be an impossible project is an experience and a memory that will serve each and every one of the mentees well when, in the future, they encounter similar apparently insurmountable obstacles.

After their completion of the first challenge, Brother Stalings broke out his heavy-duty RC cars. These cars were disassemble, and mentees were tasked with repairing the cars once they had been split into their constituent parts. Mentees would then be allowed to race the cars they had built around a track prepared on a separate floor of the house by Brothers for their enjoyment, providing a strong incentive for the mentees to focus on understanding and completing the project. The Rhinos enjoyed putting together the cars and they had more fun racing them, without a doubt a high point of the day for many of the mentees.

Brothers Stalings and Williams spoke extensively and convincingly on the attractions of a STEM career, advising the mentees to consider moving towards STEM fields as they approach manhood and begin to make the important decisions about the direction of their scholarship. The Omegas also offered guidance and material support towards the attainment of success in STEM fields; The DC Rhino's STEM Career Preparation Event's pièce de résistance was the offer by Brothers Williams and Starling to guarantee any and all interested mentees a spot in a paid STEM internship program, an opportunity of immeasurable value to young men whose futures have yet to be determined. With the confidence that the days experience, information, and assurance of future support have given them, who knows how high these Rhinos might fly.

###

Kappa Psi was chartered on the campus of Howard University in Thirkield Hall on November 19, 1926 by Bro. Dr. William Montague Cobb. We strive with the highest enthusiasm and commitment to uphold our Four Cardinal Principles of Manhood, Scholarship, Perseverance, and Uplift. Kappa Psi continues to serve the community of the District of Columbia as we are committed to continue to bring important community service projects in the District of Columbia.