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Operation Uplift Created by Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc. Creates Springboard

 | Published on Friday, September 22, 2006

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

September 22, 2006

 

 

Contacts:

William A. Smith, Ph.D.

(801) 718-8835, wasmith@ed.utah.edu

Karen Boe, Local Media Relations:

801-230-5404, marketing1slc@aol.com

 

 

Operation Uplift Created by Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc. Creates Springboard

12th District Council Meeting Unveils New Program to Assist

 

SALT LAKE CITY – The Salt Lake Convention & Visitors Bureau is happy to welcome the 12th District Council Meeting of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc. the weekend of Sept. 23rd for their annual fall District Council meeting.  In conjunction with this meeting, the fraternity has announced the formation of Operation Uplift is issuing a call to local professionals for mentoring and role model opportunities.

 

The Operation Uplift Foundation is launching a program that will include educational and professional mentoring, a minority rites of passage program, and a summer program.  Local professionals will impart information on education, health, and will provide professional role models.  The Foundation will examine its mission, values, goals and grant-making practices to determine how best to enhance Operation Uplift's current initiatives and to examine new ways to ensure the Foundation a higher level of impact on the young people and communities it serves, typically young African American, Latino and Polynesian men, but also those from white working class families and sons living in single-parent households. 


The fraternity is concerned about reports indicating that Utah dropout rates are higher than the national average in grades 7-12 for African Americans (7.7% vs. 6.5%), Latinos (8.5% vs. 7.8%), and Pacific Islanders (6.1% vs. 5.0%). Equally troubling are the reports about Utah’s Native American young people where schools are having problems producing high school graduates at an acceptable rate (6.9% dropout). The fraternity feels that these students are having a qualitatively different experience in schools than Utah’s White student population who are much better than the national average in the dropout rates (2.6% vs. 4.0%). For minority students, special efforts must be made that produces a better educational climate while other programs can be developed that speaks to their unique needs. This is where Omega Psi Phi’s Operation Uplift Foundation is prepared to step in. 


            In the future, the Foundation will continue to raise awareness and enhance individual programs, develop community partnerships to increase impact and sustainability. They also hope to increase volunteerism and community support and to establish a permanent site for the Operation Uplift to increase impact and sustainability.  Through corporate, individual and community contributions and partnerships, the goal is to increase the endowment for this program by $100,000 over the next three years.

 

The strength of the Foundation remains the countless young people, particularly young men, who participate in the fraternity’s national and local programs, and who continue to benefit from the focus on their Four Cardinal Principles of manhood, scholarship, perseverance, and uplift.

 

The 12th District is the largest District in the continental United States, encompassing 1.6 million sq. miles, 3 time zones, and 10 states ranging from Alaska to Arizona.  The Fraternity was founded on the campus of Howard Univ. in 1911 and currently is comprised of 150,000 Brothers, both graduate and undergraduate.  All chapters observe the mandated programs of: Achievement Week, Scholarship, Social Action Programs, Talent Hunt Program, College Endowment Fund, Health Initiatives and Voter Registration, Education and Mobilization.

They look forward to experiencing the historic essence of Salt Lake City, and promise to leave the city in a better condition through their commitment to social uplift, academic enrichment, and economic empowerment.

 

About Omega Psi Phi

On Friday evening, November 17, 1911, three Howard University undergraduate students, with the assistance of their faculty adviser, gave birth to the Omega Psi Phi Fraternity. This event occurred in the office of their faculty adviser and biology Professor Ernest E. Just, this was located in the Science Hall (now known as Thirkield Hall). The three liberal arts students were Edgar A. Love, Oscar J. Cooper and Frank Coleman. From the initials of the Greek phrase meaning "friendship is essential to the soul," the name Omega Psi Phi was derived. The phrase was selected as the motto. Manhood, scholarship, perseverance and uplift were adopted as cardinal principles. One of the fraternity’s major goals is development and encourage “economic empowerment leading to social and political change” for communities where chapters are located. The fraternity is committed to reaching people that are often overlooked, neglected, or least likely to get the services or assistance that most people desire or expect to receive naturally.

There are many notable Omega Men recognized as leaders in the arts, athletics, business, civil rights, education, government, and science sectors at the local, national and international level.

- www.VisitSaltLake.com -

 


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