Saturday Open Thread

Hope that you are enjoying this weekend with family and friends.

Thought that I’d spread some positive news today.

Masterman students form ‘Tribe’ to reach success
By Jenice Armstrong
Updated: April 26, 2017 — 2:56 PM EDT

Masterman students (from left) Gary Willliams, Maurice Scott, Rayshawn Johnson, and Rashaan Brooks Jr. celebrate their upcoming graduation and acceptance into top colleges. The friends call themselves “the Tribe.”

Germantown’s Rayshawn Johnson was accepted to eight of the country’s best colleges, including Yale and Brown Universities and the University of Pennsylvania.

That makes for a great story, right?

But wait, there’s more. His three closest friends scored their fair share of college acceptances, too.

But that’s not the whole story, either.

What’s special about their tale is how these boys went about making their college dreams come true. They formed a group called the Tribe, named after the iconic Queens hip-hop group A Tribe Called Quest. But instead of being all about beats, rhymes, and life, their focus is on studying, supporting each other, and besting the proverbial odds. Members include Rayshawn, Maurice Scott, Gary Williams, and Rashaan Brooks Jr., all Masterman seniors, three of them starters on the basketball team.

Given all the research surrounding black male achievement that has revealed that even with equal resources, African American boys still often lag behind their peers, I was curious to learn more about the so-called Tribe. So I invited members to the newsroom. They showed up impressively early and dressed in blazers and tan pants, neckties and dress shoes, an ensemble they’d decided on the night before.

“We all want to succeed together,” said Gary, who is headed to the University of Pittsburgh to major in mechanical engineering. “I don’t want to be the one that’s not keeping up with the other three.”

The boys, who hail from Olney, Somerton, and West Mount Airy as well as Germantown, got to know each other when they were in seventh grade at the academically rigorous Julia R. Masterman Middle Laboratory and Demonstration School in Spring Garden.

Later, when they had successfully moved to the high school, they looked around and noticed that many of their friends had left for other schools. That’s when the Tribe really became a way for the boys — all African American — to connect, deal with the intense competition, and cope with issues, racial or otherwise, when they popped up.

“It was through those times that I could text the group chat at night and be like, ‘Yo, this happened today,'” recalled Rayshawn, who plans to study finance and political science at Yale. “Masterman was challenging, but having these guys with me and to go through it together was a really good crutch.”

Kimyatta Scott, Maurice’s mother, considers the Tribe members her other sons, and said they had been good for Maurice, who is one of 10 Pennsylvania students named a Nordenberg Leadership Scholar, which means he gets his tuition paid for eight terms, a chance to study abroad, and three paid summer internships.

“I always tell Maurice, you have to be careful who you associate yourself with,” she told me. “If something goes down, they don’t want to hear, ‘I’m an A-plus student.’ If they know you’re with the bad, you’re going down with them.”

She’s got that right. You hear all the time how so and so was a good boy until he got caught up with the wrong crowd. It can happen either way.

“I have a friend who may be doing life in prison … for murder,” said Rashaan Brooks Jr., who will study physical therapy at Pitt. “I also have a friend who was murdered two weeks ago.

“That could be me. They were my close friends,” he added. “So I had to distance myself slowly to get to this point, and then I found Masterman and found these guys. Then, after that, it was easy for me.”

Update from a Previous Story. The Wade Quadruplets of Ohio have decided to attend college together:

And, this will make those allergies act up…

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29 Responses to Saturday Open Thread

  1. rikyrah says:

    Never mind the hack of the French candidates…

    Anyone else read about this man’s personal life?

    It would qualify for a Lifetime movie…yet, the French are like..

    ” eh”


  2. rikyrah says:

    Say it over again people. Spread the word: Never forget. And, this should be the way to pound Trumpcare:

    The GOP stole your health care so they could give a trillion dollars to the richest people in our country.

  3. rikyrah says:

    marisa kabas
    I compiled a list of the house members who voted YES on AHCA and whether or not they have upcoming town halls:

  4. rikyrah says:

    At an event in Beijing on Saturday, Nicole Kushner, the sister of White House senior advisor Jared Kushner, made a hard sell to wealthy Chinese investors to pour funds into the family’s new real estate development in New Jersey, according to The Washington Post.
    But Nicole Kushner offered the ballroom full of well-heeled Beijing residents more than just returns on investment: Invest with us, she told them, and you could get a highly desirable type of visa to the United States.
    “Invest $500,000 and immigrate to the United States,” a brochure for the event reportedly declared.

  5. rikyrah says:

    We all need ‘self-care’. Part of my self-care is entertainment.

    I have been looking forward to this show ever since they dropped the first trailer a few months ago.

    MAY 29TH, FOLKS!

    New Promo: ‘Still Star-Crossed’ (Debuts May 29)

    When ABC announced its mid-season 2017 premieres earlier this year
    (January), to the surprise and disappointment of many, the
    much-anticipated post-“Romeo & Juliet” TV series from Shonda Rhimes’
    Shondaland, titled “Still Star-Crossed,” which stars British actress
    Lashana Lynch, wasn’t included on the schedule. It was expected to
    premiere this current season, but it appeared that the network would
    push it back even further with a premiere date announcement to
    eventually be made.

    Speaking at the TCA (Television Critics Association) in January, ABC
    entertainment president Channing Dungey had this to say about the
    ambitious period drama: “It has taken us a little longer than we thought
    it would’ve taken us… I’ve seen the first three episodes, and the
    fourth one is coming my way soon. It has all of the great hallmarks of a
    Shondaland project, but it also is very epic in terms of its scope and
    scale, and we did not want to rush it into a place where we felt like it
    wasn’t ready.”

    And as for when she thought it would eventually premiere, Dungey
    said: “We are talking about summer; there is also a possibility that it
    becomes something for fall… It’s a bit TBD .”

    Fans can relax now as ABC announced its summer 2017 schedule earlier this month, with a number of new scripted, reality competition, and game shows included in the lineup. And one of the scripted series is of course “Still Star-Crossed,” which will premiere on Monday, May 29, airing from 10:01-11:00 p.m. Now you know. Mark your calendars.

  6. rikyrah says:


    Profile in Courage Award – Live Stream

    On May 7th, former President Barack Obama will accept the 2017 Profile in Courage Award at the Centennial May Dinner. Join us by watching the ceremony on live stream, beginning at 8:30pm with a special performance by James Taylor.

  7. Liza says:

    So how long until GoFundMe is our nation's leading health care provider?— Lon Harris (@Lons) May 4, 2017


    • Liza says:

      So, the shooter served two tours in Iraq and has PTSD. This is the excuse. Sorry, doesn’t work for me, Mr. and Mrs. Oliver.

      Perhaps he shouldn’t have been a police officer. Maybe he needed to be in another line of work where his flashbacks were not an issue.

    • Liza says:

      Yep. And then they said, “Let’s make it into a massive tax cut for the wealthy”. Then they laughed their Neanderthal asses off and drank beer with the buffoon in the Oval Office.

  8. My deepest condolences to #JordanEdwards family. I’m so so sorry. Praying for God’s mercy to help ease your pain.

  9. Liza says:

    Having hard time believing Edward Crawford shot himself especially given how other Ferguson activists were found shot to death in their cars— Matthew A. Cherry (@MatthewACherry) May 5, 2017


  10. rikyrah says:

    Morning Everyone😐😐😐

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