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Bloc Conference Experience

Dominique Spooner

I recently had the honor of attending a conference at the University of Pennsylvania, called the BLOC Conference. The idea of the conference is for young black adults to network, and gain more experiences. With everything happening today, there has been an increase in young black entrepreneurs, and if we can keep increasing that, minority groups would be more successful.

During the conference, we had multiple speakers, where most of them spoke about how computer science jobs were starting to cultivate. Another main topic of discussion was racism and discriminations. There was a social racial “lynching” on campus, which really had people, use social media outlets to “lynch” black students at the university, by posting a list. Because of all of this, the black community came together to lift everyone’s spirits by having an open mic night. We encourage each other to tell poetry to really express how we feel.


Later in the conference, we had panel discussions where young entrepreneurs. The discussion led to networking. When networking you should have a networking team, to help you further yourself, it should include the following

  • A group of individuals you can be beneficial to

  • Targets and goals

  • Thought leadership roles

  • Mentors

  • Ask people general questions about themselves - so you broaden your horizon

Makayla Peterson

The BLOC Conference was an amazing experience that I felt honored to have been able to attend. It was a great sight to see so many young aspiring African Americans with dreams, goals, and ambition in one place. The feeling of knowing that we all wanted to see one another succeed was truly magical. There was also a common goal among everyone of trying to uplift our community and to develop ways for us to prosper and breakthrough societal barriers. This was especially important to us due to the results of the presidential election. Many of the panelists explained how it is important for us to have our voices be heard and for us to continue to meet at events like this one and connect with others who have similar goals and aspirations.

I took part in the art workshop since I am a dance major at Temple University. Although none of the panelists were dancers, I thoroughly enjoyed and was enlightened by what they had to say. Their view of the arts, in general, opened my mind to new ways of thinking. Some people saw it as a form of expression, a way to connect with others, a form of networking, and a means of communication. At the conference, I was also able to reconnect with one of my best friends from middle school. I was so happy that we crossed paths and now we are able to stay in touch. Overall the BLOC conference was an event that was a great experience and something that I would love to continue to attend.