On Sunday, April 4, the NCAA will hold its first Final Four Talks event, which will take place between the Men’s Basketball National Semifinal games and the National Championship game.
The invitation-only event will be interactive this year, but the plan is to keep it annually and in person in the future.
NCAA’s newest programme
Final Four Talks is the NCAA’s newest programme to incorporate and involve student-athletes, collegiate officials, stakeholders, civic leaders, and groups in creative and encouraging concepts aimed at broadening viewpoints and inspiring change through brief, influential conversations that will form their common future. The theme for this year is “A (Racially) Just Future.”
The speakers this year will discuss a wide variety of subjects, including the importance of athlete-led advocacy, discovering a modern history that varies from what one has been told, and the grit taken to address racism and oppression.
Talks, discussions and other activations
There will be a group discussion and other activations in addition to the brief talks, providing the ability for audience members to engage with speakers as well as one another to promote further thinking and action.
Dan Gavitt, NCAA senior vice president of basketball said: “We are excited to launch this initiative to continue conversations about overcoming inequality and racial injustice.
“We hope the dialogue and interaction between panellists and guests will allow participants to learn from the shortcomings of our past and identify how we can serve a role in creating a better future for all.”
Clifton Taulbert, author and NAACP Image Award recipient, Elizabeth Williams, WNBA Atlanta Dream forward and activist, and Martin Jarmond, UCLA director of athletics, are among the announced speakers. The complete list of speakers will be revealed later. For the most up-to-date detail, go to ncaa.com/finalfourtalks.
Neelay Bhatt, vice president of Indianapolis-based PROS Consulting and a TEDx speaker, curator, and co-organiser for TEDxIndianapolis and TEDxIndianapolisWomen, is coordinating this event for the NCAA.
Any costs involved with the event’s curation will be donated to four Indianapolis nonprofits, each of which is committed to a racially just future.
100 Black Men of Indianapolis, the Catch the Stars Foundation, Grassroots Projects, and the Indianapolis Immigrant Welcome Center are the groups involved.