Sunday, February 25, 2018
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Blackbaud Website

Headquartered in Charleston, SC , Blackbaud leads the world in powering software for social good – which includes: nonprofits, schools, healthcare organizations and other institutions.  According to their website, “Our vision is to power an ecosystem of good that builds a better world.”  Apparently, they have been building a better world, and Forbes Magazine has recognized them building a better company, that understands and appreciates the value of diversity.

Forbes recently included Blackbaud as one of America’s Best Employers for Diversity 2018, in the IT, Internet/Software and Services category.  This category also includes other companies such as Google, Amazon, Microsoft and Paypal.  These companies were chosen based on anonymous, independent surveys from working Americans.

On their website, Blackbaud discussed how they focused on growing their diversity program for the past two years, through education, awareness, recruiting, and community involvement initiatives.  They also launched additional initiatives that focused on diversity, they stated:

“The recent launch of affinity groups; unconscious bias training; diversity audits and benchmarking; partnering with United Negro College Fund (UNCF) for the STEM Innovation Summit; Blackbaud Executive Women’s Summit and Blackbaud Women in Tech events; third party partnerships (ex. Fortune mentoring programs); participation as an executive board member for the SC Lowcountry Business Leadership Network focused on hiring and retaining disabled employees.”

According to Forbes, 76% of jobs in tech are held by men; and for Blacks and Latinos the numbers seem even more bleak – the makeup computes to only about 5% of the tech workforce.  With tech being a major component in our lives, it is vital that we are a part of this field. With the recent controversy of people demanding more diversity in tech and Silicon Valley, it’s great to see a company, launched in the great city of Charleston, SC being recognized globally for diversity in tech.

You can see the entire Forbes listing here.

Sources:

Forbes

Blackbaud

 

Syllabus Magazine, the Carolina's source for Music, Culture and Fashion

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A total solar eclipse is scheduled to grace the atmosphere in August and millions of people around the world are planning to take part in this heavenly phenomenon. When the moon passes between the Earth and the Sun, there will be almost three total minutes of total darkness in some sections of the United States. Scientists and astronomers have predicted that the best places in the U.S. to experience this rare occurrence is along a diagonal section from Oregon to South Carolina; more specifically, cities like St. Joseph, Missouri and Charleston, S.C. are being held as prime locations to visit during the eclipse.

As a Charleston resident, the thought of any additional traffic coming into the city is damn near frightening, but here are some things that can help you make it through this spectacular, once (or twice) in-a-lifetime event:

WHY IS THIS ECLIPSE SO SPECIAL

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They call this event “Path of Totality” and it is said that we are in for an unforgettable experience! This phenomenon is special because this is a continent-wide solar eclipse, the first to be visible since 1776.  It is also the first to cross the entire continent of North American in 99 years.  As the moon’s shadow is cast across the earth, we have been told that this is a “hauntingly beautiful” site and is symbolic of “great change” – some of us can use some great change in our lives, right! Once the moon totally envelops the sun, it will last only a few minutes, we must be prepared or we will miss it! The good news is another total solar eclipse will darken the skies above Mexico and Texas, up through the Midwest and northeastern U.S in the year 2024!

TRAFFIC

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According to NASA:

“Aug. 21, 2017, may be one of the worst traffic days in national history, some NASA representatives predict. Although about 12 million people live within the narrow band of totality, approximately 25 million reside within a day’s drive of it, and the agency has estimated that the population inside the path of totality may double on the day of the eclipse.”  

So How to Plan: (1) Hotels along the eclipse’s path have been booked for months (or years) so if you are traveling, there may be some issues with last minute planning (2) if you plan to go out to view the eclipse be aware of your proximity to food, water, parking, and facilities. (3) even traveling short distances around town will be hectic on this day

SCHOOLS ARE CLOSED

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City officials have decided on August 21st schools will be closed for safety reasons.  The city will experience total darkness for approximately 2.5 minutes, and for the safety of every child, parents are being asked to keep their children home on this day.  The good news is this will alleviate some of the already horrible traffic issues in Charleston, SC and surrounding areas.

IF YOU HAVE A BUSINESS, TAKE ADVANTAGE OF THIS NEW CUSTOMER BASE

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People from around the world are traveling to different cities to experience this eclipse.  Restaurants, gas stations, in many cities are prepping for this event like its the Superbowl.  If you have a business, create ways to generate revenue, eclipse tshirts, eclipse cupcakes, etc!  Be creative!

DON’T FORGET YOUR ECLIPSE SUNGLASSES

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Looking directly at the sun, even when it is partially covered by the moon, can cause serious eye damage or blindness DO NOT look at a partial solar eclipse without proper eye protection!  Sunglasses CANNOT be used in place of Solar Viewing Glasses. The glasses above can be found on Amazon in a 6 pack for about $21, they are the Solar Eclipse Glasses – CE and ISO Certified Safe Shades for Direct Sun Viewing – Viewer & Filter – Made in USA (6 Pack) – Astronaut American Flag. Here’s a Guide to buying the best eye protection for the eclipse  – BEWARE OF SELLERS WHO ARE HUSTLING FAKE GLASSES.

HOW AND WHERE DO YOU VIEW THE ECLIPSE IMG_3449

We will be doing another blog to list the cool events happening for the Eclipse celebrations around town.  In the meantime, check out the Charleston Museum, Outdoor Adventure Tour Boats, Patriots Point,  Citadel Mall and a plethora of other businesses who are having SAFE-VIEWING events around town!

Syllabus Magazine, the Carolina's source for Music, Culture and Fashion

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Ole Miss Track and Field at the 2016 NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships in Eugene, OR. Photo by Joshua McCoy/Ole Miss Athletics

Charleston, SC native, Burke High School alumni and Olympian, Raven Saunders has plenty to celebrate this summer. Saunders competed in the U.S. Track and Field outdoor championships in Sacramento, CA and her performance was stellar. She unleashed a winning throw in the final round of the shot-put competition, earning her a chance to compete in London this August.

Raven broke her own personal-best record by throwing 64 feet, 10 inches, taking the first place medal and beating 2016 gold medalist, Michelle Carter. Not only did Raven surpass her own record, but her throw became the world’s best throw this year, and the fourth-best in the history of the United States.  This dynamic record merely compliments Raven’s four NCAA titles and her 5th place Olympic finish in Rio de Janeiro in 2016.

Raven will go on to advance to the 2017 USA Shot Put Champion for the USA World Championship Team in London this August.

<blockquote class=”instagram-media” data-instgrm-captioned data-instgrm-version=”7″ style=” background:#FFF; border:0; border-radius:3px; box-shadow:0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width:658px; padding:0; width:99.375%; width:-webkit-calc(100% – 2px); width:calc(100% – 2px);”><div style=”padding:8px;”> <div style=” background:#F8F8F8; line-height:0; margin-top:40px; padding:50.0% 0; text-align:center; width:100%;”> <div style=” background:url(data:image/png;base64,iVBORw0KGgoAAAANSUhEUgAAACwAAAAsCAMAAAApWqozAAAABGdBTUEAALGPC/xhBQAAAAFzUkdCAK7OHOkAAAAMUExURczMzPf399fX1+bm5mzY9AMAAADiSURBVDjLvZXbEsMgCES5/P8/t9FuRVCRmU73JWlzosgSIIZURCjo/ad+EQJJB4Hv8BFt+IDpQoCx1wjOSBFhh2XssxEIYn3ulI/6MNReE07UIWJEv8UEOWDS88LY97kqyTliJKKtuYBbruAyVh5wOHiXmpi5we58Ek028czwyuQdLKPG1Bkb4NnM+VeAnfHqn1k4+GPT6uGQcvu2h2OVuIf/gWUFyy8OWEpdyZSa3aVCqpVoVvzZZ2VTnn2wU8qzVjDDetO90GSy9mVLqtgYSy231MxrY6I2gGqjrTY0L8fxCxfCBbhWrsYYAAAAAElFTkSuQmCC); display:block; height:44px; margin:0 auto -44px; position:relative; top:-22px; width:44px;”></div></div> <p style=” margin:8px 0 0 0; padding:0 4px;”> <a href=”https://www.instagram.com/p/BVvNJFYArtn/” style=” color:#000; font-family:Arial,sans-serif; font-size:14px; font-style:normal; font-weight:normal; line-height:17px; text-decoration:none; word-wrap:break-word;” target=”_blank”>2 weeks ago took an L but this week I bounced back. Happy to say I&#39;m the 2017 USA Shot Put Champion and qualified for the USA World Championship Team in London. Man this year has had sooo many ups and downs, but I&#39;m back. #Monster #beast #Usa #tracknation #throwernation #usachampion #london #london2017 #hulk #hulksmash #olemiss #rebels #southcarolina #charleston #monsterenergy</a></p> <p style=” color:#c9c8cd; font-family:Arial,sans-serif; font-size:14px; line-height:17px; margin-bottom:0; margin-top:8px; overflow:hidden; padding:8px 0 7px; text-align:center; text-overflow:ellipsis; white-space:nowrap;”>A post shared by Raven Hulk Saunders (@giveme1shot__) on <time style=” font-family:Arial,sans-serif; font-size:14px; line-height:17px;” datetime=”2017-06-24T21:34:40+00:00″>Jun 24, 2017 at 2:34pm PDT</time></p></div></blockquote>
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Syllabus Magazine, the Carolina's source for Music, Culture and Fashion

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In a disturbing report, first published with the BBC, it appears that the Gullah Geechee community of Plantersville, South Carolina is fighting to keep their land, all due to fees for services they are not even using. Last week 20 homes were put up to be auctioned in a city bidding spree. Lillian Milton did not find out about here home until she had went down to the tax office to settle her tax bill.  She was told her home had been sold because she never paid a $250 sewer bill – a sewer system that she was not using at this time.

According to reports written by Brian Wheeler, Milton stated, “They had sold everything, the property, the house and all and when I offered to pay them with a check, they told me I couldn’t. I had to get cash money – 880 some dollars that I had to pay them to get my place back.” Not long after this saga, Milton suffered a heart-attack, which she believes was brought on by the stress of the treat that she would lose her house and her property.

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BBC.com

By the way, Milton’s home and property was valued at around $46,000, the real-estate developer who bought her property purchased it for $1,236!  Luckily, if your home is sold at an auction, the owner has one year to pay the bill in order to prevent having the land taken.

Plantersville is prime real-estate.  All who live here, like many of us are the direct descendants of slaves – and the community of Plantersville is all developed on heirs property.  This Gullah Geechee land has been passed down for generations, and according to Rev. Ben Grate, more than a million Gullah Geechee descendant across america have a share of this land, and don’t even know.

Please read the full version of this fight to keep the Gullah Geechee land with who it belongs – its rightful descendants.

“We are the only gullah-geechee land that is in tact.  And owners of land, and tradition, and a way of life.” -Gullah Geechee resident of Plantersville, SC

gullahmuseum
BBC.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Source: BBC

 

 

 

Syllabus Magazine, the Carolina's source for Music, Culture and Fashion

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Thoughts after watching the Charleston County Council Meeting on 11/1/16

One day while at a local McDonalds in Charleston, SC there was a female manager working alongside her employees.  The restaurant was semi-crowded, and I had stopped for a quick bite before heading back to work.  McDonalds typically isn’t my first choice, but hell there weren’t too many options as I headed out of West Ashley into downtown.  While we were waiting patiently for our highly processed, saturated fat, fast food, the Manager began to get loud with one of her young employees.  The young man looked to be in his late teens or early twenties, and as she popped off he simply looked away in a nonchalant manner as she quickly ended her moment of frustration.

Though the moment ended quickly, I looked around at the others in the restaurant just to see if they were as confused as I was.  All I could think was “what was the point of that”, did that make her feel good, could she not have taken him in the back and checked him instead of putting on a show for the people standing in a line?  How easy would it have been to pull him to the side to say what she needed to say – was she trying to flex her manager muscles or was she just having a bad day?

For whatever reason, watching the Charleston County Council meeting on yesterday made me think of this incident.  In all honesty, Summey deserves to be reprimanded.  His comments regarding black people, his fellow council members, and just his pure arrogance was simply annoying and he most definitely needs to be checked.  However, something happened at last night’s meeting that left me more confused than I was standing in the McDonald’s line.  Why are the young black “freedom fighters” going so hard, to the point of insulting the older black members of the NAACP, NAAM, etc?

There is a level of frustration among all people of color living in Charleston as we see our city change, thrive, and manifest into something we are not use to.  We watch this manifestation occur, as we also watch blacks in this city appear to stay at the same levels of poverty, all the while – lacking job opportunities and resources.  But, where are we headed if we continuously thrive on creating division?  Last night’s meeting was a show of solidarity in the fact that Summey needed to remove himself from his post – or so I thought.  But, it turned into an ‘us against them’ beating of the chest, stomping of foot showcase.  The focus was taken off of what Summey had said and turned into a public display of disunity among the blacks here in Charleston.

I felt like the members of NAAM, NAACP, and the younger people of Charleston, SC can easily come to the table and voice their frustrations, away from cameras, outside of social media, and simply have a heart to heart.  The enemy loves division and the display on last night showed that we are more divided than ever.

There is a lot more to be said and shared, but I would rather share in a closed session in a room of like-minded people since I don’t believe that strategy should ever be exposed on social media.  However, here are some eye-openers from last night’s County Council meeting:

  • You cannot simultaneously fight the enemy and fight each other.
  • Focus on the Goal, don’t become so distracted by the ability to flex your muscles, that you forget the purpose and take your eye off of the goal
  • Sometimes your voice is all you got!
  • You cannot stay silent regarding issues of race – ever!
  • If you have taken on the task of working for, and representing the people – the people could care less about your personal relationships.
  • Working as a representative for your community is a choice; no one is forcing anyone to take on these positions. If you accept the pat-on-the-backs, you must accept the kick-in-the-butts.
  • Publically trying to bring someone else down, does not build you up.
  • Let’s go back to a time when we pulled our brothers and sisters to the side for a real, man-to-man, face-to-face, woman-to-woman conversation. Whatever you can say while cameras are rolling can be said behind closed doors.
  • Your social media posts/history tells a lot about who you are – so be careful #sideeye
  • Don’t let the enemy see all of your cards. The enemy knows they can strike when they see that your team is weak and not united.
  • Being genuine is more important than being seen.
Syllabus Magazine, the Carolina's source for Music, Culture and Fashion

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