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AKA continues legacy of promoting the arts

 

Twelve high school seniors from various schools throughout Memphis competed for over $5,000 in scholarships and prizes during the 11th Annual Pat Gill Performing Arts Scholarship Showcase at Rhodes College.

Special to the Tri-State Defender

Twelve talented high school seniors from various schools throughout Memphis competed for over $5,000 in scholarships and prizes during the 11th Annual Pat Gill Performing Arts Scholarship Showcase at Rhodes College last week (March 3).

 
 Pictured (l-r): Trina Hyman, Alexis Ware, Kierra Turner, Christopher Katchens II, Katrina Thompson, Chasiti Brooks and Janice Gray. (Courtesy photo)

The event was presented by Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated of Phi Lambda Omega Chapter (PLO). The theme was “A Masquerade of Talent” and the contestants were adorned with Mardi Gas masks that complemented the decorations throughout the venue at the Bryan Campus Life Center.

Performances included vocal, dance and dramatic expressions, 400-plus in attendance. Christopher Katchens II from Southwind High School won first place and received a $2,000 scholarship; Chasiti Brooks from Central High School netted at $1,500 scholarships for second place; Alexis Ware of Whitehaven High School placed third, earning a $1,000 scholarship; and Kierra Turner of White Station earned a $500 scholarship for fourth place.

Each contestant wrote a 250-word essay on what the scholarship would mean to him or her. Brooks was the essay winner and also received the award for the highest ticket sales.

Other participants were Ashley Threat, Whitehaven; Taylor Wells, Houston; Jamesia Terry, White Station; Breanna Shannon, Southwind; Lenora Washington, Whitehaven; Kendra Currie, Whitehaven; Bianca Fondren, Whitehaven; and Tyuana Stripling, Whitehaven.

The showcase featured a welcome by Katrina Thompson, president of PLO, and was moderated by Dr. Marlah Mardis. Judge Gina Higgins created context, highlighting the importance of continuing a legacy of reaching out and offering positive directions to students.

The PLO extended its philanthropic efforts to four groups as special guests – The Emerging Young Leaders, The Ivy League, Cypress Middle School and Corry Middle School. Other guests included vocal performers Tiffany Williams and A’Mirrah Elise.

A special presentation was awarded to PLO member Gwendolyn Gilbert Shorter for longstanding service to the showcase, whose chairperson this year was Janice Gray.

Trina Hyman, vice president and program chairperson of PLO, capped the showcase with encouragement for each person to make a difference in the lives of others.

 

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