Guest speakers will be Tina L. Fletcher and Dr. Trina L. Fletcher – entrepreneurs, scholar-activists and the owners of Fletcher Education Solutions, an education consulting firm. Born and raised in the rural South by their single mother, the Fletcher twins are first-generation college students who have always been determined to positively impact the lives of others, especially youth, women and girls through education, leadership development, and their personal story of success.
Tina L. Fletcher holds a bachelor’s degree in Political Science and African American Studies from the University of Arkansas and a master’s degree in Secondary Teacher Education from Harvard University. She has interned with the Southern Education Foundation, the Congressional Black Caucus, and the Office of the First Lady Michelle Obama. Tina’s work experience includes serving as a social studies teacher at Anacostia High School, where she was named the 2010 Teacher of the Year. She has also served as a fundraiser for President Barack Obama and Congressman Anthony Brown. Before returning to school to earn a PhD, Tina served as a Community Engagement Director for the Mayor of Washington, D.C.
Trina L. Fletcher holds a bachelor’s degree in Applied Engineering from the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff, a master’s degree in Engineering Management from George Washington University and a doctorate degree in Engineering Education from Purdue University. She has interned with Lockheed Martin, Caterpillar, Kellogg’s and Johnson and Johnson. She is the author of several research papers focusing on women and girls of the African diaspora in STEM (science, technology, engineering and math). Before becoming a professor, Trina served as the Director of Pre-College Programs for the National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE), where she hosted summer STEM camps for underserved youth in 16 major US cities.
The Fletcher twins are the authors of 10 Steps to Succeeding at ANY College and Surviving High School: A Teen’s Guide to Academic and Social Success. They have been named Visionary Arkansans, Brown Girls Rock (Education), IMPACT Leaders of the Month and WKYS 93.9’s Top 30 Under 30.
Upward Bound is a federally-funded program that creates an environment which inspires and supports engaged, life-long learning. It motivates students to improve their grades in high school and continue education through a college degree. The program offers a comprehensive set of services targeted at a specific group of individuals from grades 9-12. The SAU Upward Bound program has been in existence for more than 49 years and was one of the first in the nation. The program is currently funded to serve 180 southwest Arkansas high school students.
Students are eligible to participate if neither parent has a four-year college degree and/or the family income represents economic need; they have the potential for success in post-secondary education; and they can benefit from Upward Bound services. For more information on SAU’s Upward Bound program or on the graduation ceremony, please call 870-235-4160 or visit http://web.saumag.edu/ub.