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Peter Boykin    

History Professor Specializing in African American & United States History

Peter Jeffrey Boykin was born on August 22, 1976 to the Honorable Ulysses W. Boykin III. and Mrs. Pamela T. Boykin. He matriculated at Gesu Elementary and graduated from Cass Technical High School in 1994 studying in the Performing Arts Curriculum. After high school, he continued the Boykin legacy by attending the prestigious HBCU, Hampton University, where he obtained a Bachelor of Arts Degree in History graduating in 1998. Then, after completing his undergraduate studies, he ventured to Washington, D.C. In 2001, a Master of Arts degree in Teaching with an emphasis in Secondary Education was attained from Howard University. In 2007, Boykin went back for a second master’s degree in Public Relations and completed it in 2009 at Michigan State University.

Professionally, Boykin has been committed to the field of education. He interned during his second year of graduate school (Howard University) at the U.S. Department of Education in Washington, D.C., where he worked in the Office of Elementary and Secondary Education doing research on pertinent education issues like Closing the Achievement Gap between African-American, Latino, and other students of color with their White counterparts. From 2001-2003, he taught social studies at Woodbridge High School in the Prince William County, Virginia School District. Since January 2004, he has been an instructor of history at Wayne County Community College District and teaches African American History, United States History, and World History courses. In terms of professional involvement, he is a financial member of the American Federation of Teachers Local 2000 and the Association for the Study of Life and African American History.

Aside from his instructional duties, Boykin is very active in his community. He is a member of Omega Psi Phi, Fraternity, Nu Omega Chapter and was a former member of the Detroit Omega Foundation Board of Directors, a nonprofit arm of the chapter that managed the fraternity’s nationally mandated programs on a local level, serving as the Board Secretary. As a member of the Detroit Hampton Alumni Association, Mr. Boykin served as Vice-President for the chapter and President. He currently serves on the Scholarship Committee for the Detroit Hampton Alumni and participates in college fairs along with his father.

Boykin is married to Mrs. Sheila Scott Boykin of Bronwood, Georgia.

Speech Topics

African American History of Detroit from Slavery to Freedom

Detroit is one of the most progressive cities for African Americans. What many people don't realize is that it had slavery in addition to being an Underground Railroad station. In the presentation, Boykin cover the presence of slaves in Detroit through the ending of slavery and up until the election of Coleman Young as the city's first African American mayor.

The Story of Johnson Chesnut Whittaker

Boykin's great-great-grandfather was Johnson Chesnut Whittaker, one of the 1st African American Cadets to matriculate at West Point. He was unjustly court-martialed after being brutally beaten by his white peers and then accused of faking the incident. Whitaker was eventually pardoned by President Chester Arthur. He later became a laywer and high school principal. In 1994, a made-for-TV movie entitled "Assault at West Point" was released along with a re-released book, "Court Martial" about the incident. The next year, Boykin's family and he received a posthumous commission from President Clinton granting Whittaker the rank of second lieutenant in the military.

Other Topics Include:

  • African American Jewish American Relationships going back to the Civil War
  • Reconstruction
  • Unsung Women Heroes of the Civil Rights Movement before the 1950's
  • African American History of Detroit

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