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African Ancestry, Educators, Identity Experts Launch DNA Education Project during Historic Black History Month; 7th Graders Score High on Ultimate Self Test
Date:2/3/2009

This Black History Month is like none other. To mark the observance, African Ancestry, Educators & Identity Experts launch Ancestry Education Project to promote science education, achievement motivation and positive psychological development among the nation's young people.

Washington, DC (PRWEB) February 3, 2009 -- African Ancestry, Inc., the DC-based company that pioneered DNA-driven ancestry tracing for people of African descent in the U.S, inspires students with the launch of its "Ancestry Education Project" during this monumental Black History Month. With DC Public School Walker Jones Education Campus as its first beneficiary, the pilot program employs interdisciplinary learning modules such as ancestry DNA tracing, life sciences and world geography and identity development -- in a classroom setting. Slated to expand to other markets later this year, the goal of Ancestry Education Project is to promote science education, achievement motivation and positive psychological development among the nation's young people.

"This Black History Month is like none other as this year we will all awaken on February 1 to an African-American president for the first time in history," said Gina Paige, president & co-founder of African Ancestry, Inc. "We are making it possible for African American students to take part in a deeper, more meaningful way that we hope will stimulate greatness every day of the year."

Headed by Principal Dr. Jeffrey Grant, Walker Jones educates students grades PK-8. In early January, seventh graders took part in the first of three components of the program by taking the ancestry-tracing test in the school's science lab. The activities continue throughout February where Life Sciences teacher Matrice Johnson and World History teacher Giovonne Scarboro will employ curricula on African geography, DNA and ancestry tracing. Ancestry Education Project culminates in a powerful celebration where African Ancestry assembles the students, their families, faculty and the community to unveil where in African each student's bloodline originated.

Dr. Grant -- an educator in DC public schools for more than 13 years -- also took part in the ancestry-testing day and will closely monitor the activities throughout the program. "This is one of the most inspirational, unique initiatives that I've seen for middle school students. I was overwhelmed by their excitement about ancestry tracing and the continent of Africa, and even more struck by their keen focus and interest on the science dimension of it all."

African Ancestry's Ancestry Education Project Reveal Celebration

  • February 25 (Time TBD)
  • Walker Jones Education Center, 1100 1st Street, NW, Washington, DC, 20001
  • Media are invited to attend, but must RSVP by February 15; Photo, video and interview opportunities available upon request
Education studies show that project-based science increases students' interest, learning and achievement motivation. Psychological research indicates that identity is one of the most important aspects of human development and knowing ancestral origins is an important aspect of a person's identity construction/development. "Engaging students in this interdisciplinary education project creates a unique opportunity for an authentic learning experience to promote their science interest, achievement motivation and identity," said Dr. Cynthia Winston, the project's educational psychologist and Principal Investigator of Howard University's Identity and Success Research Lab.

About African Ancestry:
Founded in 2003 on years of research, African Ancestry, Inc. is the ancestry tracing company that pioneered African lineage matching in the United States utilizing its proprietary DNA-database of more than 25,000 African DNA lineages to more accurately assess present-day country of origin for people of African descent. Since its inception, African Ancestry's lineage reveals have impacted the lives of more than 100,000 people in the U.S. from communities at large to global leaders such as Oprah Winfrey, Morgan Freeman, India.Arie, Chris Rock and Spike Lee. In late 2008, actor Isaiah Washington, became the first African American in the U.S. to gain African citizenship in Sierra Leone solely based on his DNA-established ancestry in the country.

African Ancestry has been featured across the globe in outlets such as CNN's Black in America series, 60 Minutes, Essence Magazine and as part of the ground-breaking PBS special "African American Lives 1 & 2" with Skip Gates. African Ancestry is African-American-owned and operated and headquartered in Washington, DC.

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Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/2009/02/prweb1950954.htm.


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