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Published on February 23rd, 2015 | by Millennium Magazine Staff

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Columbia Urban League Annual Young and Gifted Awards

The Columbia Urban League hosted its 2015 Young and Gifted Black History Month Program at Brookland Baptist Church on Feb 28th to honor African-American achievement.

For the past 30 years, the Columbia Urban League has celebrated Black History Month by recognizing the achievements of African-American high school students by hosting their annual program focused on celebrating achievement as one of the most defining and transforming legacies of Black History.

At the ceremony, nearly 700 African-American high school seniors, from around the Midlands, were recognized at the Brookland Banquet and Conference Center, located at 1066 Sunset Boulevard in West Columbia.

These high school seniors, with a 3.00 grade point average or above, were nominated by their respective schools and will be recognized in the areas of academics, athletics, arts, leadership and technical education.

Honorees represented the following counties: Allendale, Clarendon, Fairfield, Kershaw, Lee, Lexington, Newberry, and Richland.

Mr. James T. McLawhorn Jr., president and CEO of the Columbia Urban League, stated “This program is vital because it recognizes the importance of preparation, performance, and perseverance, which are the driving forces behind achievement and success.”

This year’s speaker was Mr. Edwin Waleh. Mr.Waleh received his Bachelor of Science degree in Management Information Systems from the University of North Carolina in Charlotte, North Carolina. He also earned a Master of Business Administration degree with a concentration in Information Systems. In addition, he also maintains certification as a Tenable Security Engineer. Mr. Waleh started his career at Duke Energy, where he was employed for five years, working in various information technology fields, dealing with audit and compliance, configuration management, and nuclear information technology systems and applications. In March of 2013, Mr. Waleh started working at South Carolina Electric and Gas (SCE&G). He is currently an Infrastructure Analyst III, where he supports SCE&G’s Energy Management System.

This year, Mr. Waleh discussed the importance of achievement and how it is crucial for those in influential positions to motivate and support those who are underserved and who would otherwise not reach their fullest potential. While at this event, Mr. Waleh also plans on emphasizing the true measurement of achievement in addition to discussing why it is vital to invest in our youth by encouraging them and by also providing them with the necessary support to ensure our future generations’ success so that their legacies may also live on.

For more information, please contact Mr. James T. McLawhorn, Jr.:(803) 929-1040 or culsc@aol.com.


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