Conference Inspires Columbia Youth

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COLUMBIA - Several hundred minority youth spent their Saturday morning listening to inspiring seminars and getting some inspiration in the process.

The Columbia Public Schools' Minority Achievement Committee (MAC) hosted its third annual MAC Scholars Conference at Hickman High School. The student-run conference was called "Expect to Win, Because Failure is not an Option."

Minority students from Columbia public schools heard seminars about being healthy, planning for the future, and understanding and changing the images they see in hip hop.

Conference coordinator Annelle Whitt said, "It focuses on their strengths. It focuses on maybe some of their weaknesses and how they can turn those weaknesses into strengths. It gives them the opportunity to hear from educators who are not just regional educators, people from the community and faculty members.

University of the Missouri professor Dr. Bryana French spoke to the girls of the conference about eating healthy and having positive body image.

The boys of the conference learned about how to get jobs in the future and the different options they have to being successful after they leave the Columbia Public Schools system.

MAC Scholars is a school district program that encourages minority students to achieve academically in school.