About "Aiming for the Stars"

Dallas County Community College District (DCCCD), Project Still I Rise, Inc., Senator Royce West’s Office and the University of Texas at Dallas , along with other community partners, planning the fifth annual African American Male Academic Bowl. This event targets participation from students within all Texas independent school districts.

Purpose of the Event

The event is intended to accomplish the following:

  • To promote Academic Achievement among African American males grades 4th-8th.
  • To encourage African American Male youth to continue to excel in their educational endeavors
  • To encourage team work, peer mentoring, peer accountability, peer learning and competitive academic completion among African American male youth grades 4-8th.
  • Increase male mentoring relationship with young African American males.
  • To counteract the negative images of African American male youth in all aspects of the media.
  • To increase out of school time learning for African American male underrepresented communities.

What is the African American Male Academic Bowl?


This is an academic tournament that invites teams of three youth and one team coach to engage in a single elimination tournament which will test them on a wide range of topics. There are two divisions: 4th – 5th grade & 6th- 8th grade. Each round is designed as a game that will quiz two teams within a designated time frame. A moderator will ask questions and it is up to a team member, from either team, to signal that he can give the correct answer. Judges will be on hand to acknowledge confirmation of the answers and the team that answers the most questions correctly before time has expired wins. The top two teams from both categories will meet in the championship round. The winners and their respective coaches from both categories will receive special awards separate from all of those who participate.

Honorary Chairs

Senator Royce West

Senator Royce West
Royce West, Senator,
Texas Senate
Royce West was first elected to the Texas Senate in November 1992. Since taking office he has represented the 23rd Senatorial District on behalf of the citizens of Dallas County in the Texas Legislature. During his tenure, Senator West has been named by Texas Monthly as one of the 25 most powerful people in Texas politics, been selected for the magazine’s biennial “Ten Best Legislators in Texas” list, and has twice been named as an “Honorable Mention.” Senator West has also received mention on the Associated Press’ “Movers and Shakers” list, and Texas Insider named Senator West to its 2009 “Best Legislators” list.

Dr. Richard C. Benson

Dr. Richard C. BensonDr. Richard C. Benson, President,The University of Texas @ Dallas

Dr. Richard C. Benson, the fifth president of The University of Texas at Dallas, earned a bachelor of science and engineering degree in aerospace and mechanical science from Princeton University, a master’s degree in mechanical engineering from the University of Virginia, and a doctorate in mechanical engineering from the University of California, Berkeley.

Prior to beginning his university career, he worked for the Xerox Corporation as a technical specialist and project manager from 1977 to 1980. He joined the University of Rochester in 1980 as an assistant professor of mechanical engineering and was named the top teacher in the College of Engineering and Applied Science in 1981. He progressed to associate professor in 1983 and full professor in 1989. He served as associate dean for graduate studies in the College of Engineering and Applied Science from 1989 to 1992 and as chair of the Department of Mechanical Engineering from 1992 to 1995.

Dr. Joe May

dr-joe-mayDr. Joe May, Chancellor, Dallas County Community College District

Dr. Joe May started his higher education career in 1978 as an adjunct faculty member at Cedar Valley College in the Dallas County Community College District. Those initial experiences were the foundation for his strong belief that the role of community colleges is the solution for the greatest challenges facing individuals, employers and communities.

Selected as the seventh chancellor of the Dallas County Community College District, Dr. Joe May assumed his duties at DCCCD in late February 2014. Throughout his career, May has expanded opportunities for students who want to pursue a bachelor's degree by starting at a community college. At the same time, he brings a strong commitment to improve the Dallas economy by helping to grow middle-class jobs. He is known both nationally and internationally as a result of his relentless advocacy for the role of community colleges in solving today's most challenging social issues.