Powell, author of 15 books, is one of America’s most famous political, cultural, literary and hip-hop voices.
PRAIRIE VIEW, Texas, September 8, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Prairie View A&M University today announced the nomination of the beloved poet, journalist, television personality and author Kevin Powell to serve as the second writer-in-residence of the Toni Morrison Writing Program.
“Kevin Powell responds to the objective: he studies; he thinks deeply; and he takes a stand on a multitude of issues.”
Powell has written articles, essays and blogs for a wide range of major newspapers, magazines and websites. His writing has appeared in The New York Times, CNN.com, The Nation, NPR, ESPN, Essence, Esquire, Ebony, The Huffington Post, The Washington Post, Rolling Stone, Complex, British GQ, The Guardian, and ESPN.com. Powell worked at Vibe Magazine as a senior editor for many years, interviewing public figures as diverse as Tupac Shakur and general Colin Powell.
Powell’s upcoming books include The Kevin Powell Reader, a collection of his writings, interviews and speeches spanning 30 years of his work and a long-awaited biography of Tupac Shakur.
A native of City of Jersey, Powell was raised by a single mother in a community stricken with extreme poverty and violence. His life changed after studying at Rutgers University in New Brunswick through the New Jersey Educational Opportunity Fund, a program created during the civil rights movement to benefit poor youth. Today, he has lectured, worked, and traveled in all 50 U.S. states and five of the world’s seven continents.
Now in its second year, PVAMU’s Toni Morrison writing program continues to thrive under the leadership of Provost Emeritus Emma Joahanne Thomas-Smith. One of the most famous African-American poets, Nikki Giovannicompleted her appointment as the program’s inaugural writer-in-residence this spring.
“The Toni Morrison Writing Program Selection of Kevin Powell as Writer-in-Residence meets Purpose: Powell Studies; Powell thought deeply. It takes a stand on a multitude of issues, including but not limited to social justice, interpersonal relationships, hip hop culture and environmentalism, and more. It appeals to a multigenerational audience and calls them to action. Given the current socio-political climate, nothing could be more timely, especially for HBCU students for whom the college years are a learning curve for thoughtful, meaningful, and intentional participation in the change they wish to see,” Thomas-Black-smith said.
Powell began his appointment on September 1stwith its first public lecture scheduled for later this month.
About Prairie View A&M University: Designated an institution of “the first class” in the Constitution of Texas, Prairie View A&M University is the second oldest public institution of higher education in the state. With an established reputation for producing engineers, nurses, and educators, PVAMU offers bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degree programs at eight colleges and schools. A member of The Texas A&M University System, the university is dedicated to fulfilling its land-grant mission of achieving excellence in teaching, research, and service. For more information about PVAMU, visit www.pvamu.edu.
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