Assistant Professor of Hip Hop A.D. Carson from the McIntire School of Music at the University of Virginia will be the keynote speaker for the annual Black and Latinx Summit on Saturday, April 7.

Sponsored by Illinois State University’s Dean of Students Office and Diversity Advocacy, the conference is for current high school and college students who have an interest in examining the intersection of hip hop music and culture. This year’s theme is “Beats, Rhymes & Life.”

The summit is free but registration is required.

There will be a preconference social at 7 p.m. Friday, April 6, in the Prairie Room of the Bone Student Center. The social will include free activities such as a barber, massage therapists, comedy show, live DJ, and refreshments.

A.D. Carson speaking from a podium

A.D. Carson

Carson’s talk will take place at the Marriott Hotel and Conference Center, 201 Broadway Ave., Normal. The summit’s educational workshops will take place at the State Farm Hall of Business on the Illinois State campus.

The Black and Latinx Summit is a conference that focuses on issues targeting the Black and Latinx communities. Conference attendees will create an environment of camaraderie, discuss issues, and develop concrete steps for not only impacting their lives, but the lives of their communities.

Carson teaches at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville. He is a performance artist and educator whose work focuses on race, literature, history, and rhetorical performances. With a Ph.D. in rhetorics, communication, and information design from Clemson University, his work has been featured by Complex, The Chronicle of Higher EducationForbesThe Guardian, NPR’s All Things ConsideredTime, USA Today, and XXL among others. His most recent project includes “Sleepwalking, Vol. 1: A Mixtape,” which is an extension of his doctoral dissertation “Owning My Masters: The Rhetorics of Rhymes & Revolutions.”

Those who need special accommodations or more information, can contact Diversity Advocacy at (309) 438-8968 or email.