Over 600 young women from the greater Madison area enjoyed the 6th annual Black Girl Magic Conference held recently at the Madison College Truax campus. The day of both education and celebration was exactly as exciting as anyone involved in Black Girl Magic Educational Services Inc. would expect.
As the organization has picked up steam over the last years, so too have the consistently successful events they hold. With more than 600 spots for Black girls across the Madison area and beyond, Rosa Thompson, founder and executive director of Black Girl Magic Educational Services, shared how the conference has grown in both size and engagement.
“It’s a whirlwind of a day. There’s so much joy, so much excitement, it’s just great to see all the girls from across the school districts,” Thompson told Madison365. “Now we have seven school districts joining us this year, so we added three additional school districts. The excitement is there, and we reached capacity in four hours, which is unprecedented.”
The excitement around the conference on May 25th was audible from the energetic crowd of girls grades 4-8 who were not shy to enjoy the freedom. The campus transformed into a network of breakout rooms and opportunities to hear from amazing achievers such as 2021 Scripps National Spelling Bee winner Zaila Avant-garde.
Many girls found their way to the conference and Black Girl Magic’s services through the facilitation of staff from their own schools. Thompson spoke about how effective and impactful it has been for faculty to engage with their services and to continue building bridges that promote education for Black girls.
“I really commend the teachers and school staff who reach out to us and sign their girls up, because they recognize how important it is for their girls to have this space. Regardless if it’s once a year, or if they figure out ways to incorporate Black Girl Magic within their school or their school district, it’s very important,” said Thompson, speaking to the importance of the space that encourages Black girls from various districts to connect.
“I appreciate that they take the time to come from Oregon, McFarland, and Middleton, so that they can bring their girls in the space to learn with other girls who look like them and from Black women who are solidly in their passions and careers who want to share their interests with the girls.”
Black Girl Magic hosts fewer events over the summer for a much-needed break from the exciting school year, but they still like to keep busy. Holding their Melanated Mindfulness Camp this month, along with a foreseeable WERQ dance fitness class to raise funds, will make a busy summer yet for Thompson and the Black Girl Magic family, and they would love for anyone interested to reach out and get involved.
“There are so many opportunities out there, but it’s hard to figure out how to get involved,” Thompson said. “If your family or you don’t have the capacity to really dig into it, or the funds to be able to provide it, it’s hard to get involved. I think the exposure that we do, plus some of the enrichment programming, is super important. It’s important to get a taste of what you’re going to experience in high school and college earlier, so it’s not a huge learning curve.”
To learn more about Black Girl Magic Educational Services Inc. and watch for upcoming events, visit their website here.