Actress, Advocate Taraji P. Henson to Lead Speaker Series on Mental Health at N.C. A&T

By Tonya Dixon / 03/09/2020 Students

EAST GREENSBORO, N.C. (March 26, 2020) – It is important, now more than ever, to cultivate, encourage and educate about the importance of positive mental health on college campuses.

North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University is devoting the fall 2020 Chancellor’s Speaker Series, “Mind Over Matter,” to addressing mental health with award-winning actress, writer, producer, entrepreneur and mental health advocate, Taraji P. Henson. Alumnus, actor, host and philanthropist Terrence Jenkins, better known as Terrence J, will moderate the conversation. A date will be announced. 

“Mind Over Matter” will examine mental health from the perspective of young adults and how educators, peers and community members can provide support and guidance in the midst of a changing and complex modern world.

Topics will include the stigma of mental illness in the African American community, triggers and steps to maintaining a healthy mental state.  This conversation aligns with the 2019-2020 strategic priority of developing and implementing programs to enhance student wellness, including diverse recreational spaces.

Henson quickly rose to fame after her breakout performance in the critically acclaimed film “Hustle & Flow,” earning her a Screen Actors Guild nomination. She most recently starred as Cookie Lyon in Fox’s hit musical drama “Empire,” and has had recurring roles on “Person of Interest,” “Boston Legal” and “The Division.” In 2017, she portrayed NASA mathematician Katherine G. Johnson in the Academy Award-nominated film “Hidden Figures” and maintains an extensive roster of other television and movie credits including, “Proud Mary,” “Think Like a Man,” “No Good Deed,” “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button,” and more.

In 2018, Henson founded The Boris Lawrence Henson Foundation, a nonprofit organization named in honor of her father, who suffered with mental health challenges as a result of his tour of duty in the Vietnam War. The foundation seeks to change the perception of mental illness in the African-American community by encouraging professional assistance.

Three-time Emmy nominee, Terrence J, is one of Hollywood’s most sought-after hosts and entertainment professionals. From beginning his career as a host on BET’s “106 & Park,” to “Power Confidential” on STARZ, Terrence J’s career has not only covered the entertainment spectrum, but the philanthropic as well, especially in promotion and support of Historically Black Colleges and Universities, particularly his alma mater, N.C. A&T.

This event is free and open to the public. Students must present their valid Aggie One card to receive a ticket. A limited amount of tickets will be made available to the general public. All tickets will be available at a later date, prior to the event, through the University Ticket Office located in Brown Hall.

To request media credentials, visit the university’s website or email tsjones@ncat.edu.

Media Contact Information: tddixon1@ncat.edu

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