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Blinn dean shares experiences as part of Black History Month celebration

Adams’ poetry depicts his journey from poverty to higher education

February 13, 2014

Dr. Jimmy AdamsBorn in Tuscaloosa, Ala., where a railroad track separated blacks from whites, Dr. Jimmy Adams has felt the pangs of racism since he was just a boy. Now an educator for more than 15 years, Adams strives to inspire others to persevere on their own journey.

Adams presented “The Journey: Reality,” a collection of poems detailing his life’s path from a run-down shack in the projects to his current role as Blinn College’s dean of Business, Agriculture and Kinesiology.

Adams’ presentation replaced a scheduled speech from Frederick D. McClure, Chief Executive Officer of the George Bush Presidential Library Foundation, who was unable to appear due to a family emergency.

Sponsored by the College’s Division of Social Sciences and hosted at Blinn’s Barbara L. Pearson Banquet Room, the event was part of Blinn’s Black History Month celebration.

Through spoken word poetry set to the backdrop of popular music, Adams performed 17 artistic renderings of his life experiences, from witnessing the abuse of women, to living without a father, to watching his brother die from AIDS.

“On my journey to where I am in life today, I have lived, seen, witnessed and experienced things you would not believe,” Adams said. “As I reflect on the state of the black experience in America, I am reminded of the struggle I endured and the struggle of those before me in our fight for freedom, justice and equality.”

Adams wove the image of a phoenix into his performance, citing the mythological creature’s ability to consume itself with fire and rise from the ashes; a metaphor he likened to his ability to escape the projects and pursue higher education.

“My message is universal,” Adams said. “Though it’s in the subset of black history, my story can speak to anyone who has experienced hardship and fights to rise above it.”

Blinn enrolled 18,413 students this Fall and has experienced 31.1 percent growth since 2006.

Founded in 1883, the College’s tuition and fees average about one-third the cost of the same classes at most four-year public universities in the state. In addition to its campuses in Brenham, Bryan, Schulenburg and Sealy, the College teaches online courses, dual credit for high school and prepares students for quick employment through its career and technical certification programs. To register for eight-week courses by March 5 or learn about financial aid opportunities, visit: www.blinn.edu