Hundreds of women from the Alpha Kappa Alpha (AKA) sorority were on hand at the Animal Kingdom Theme Park at Disney World on July 9. Members of the sorority were at Disney to kick off the 70th annual international Boule conference in Orlando. The convention was held from July 10-15, and more than 10,000 women were expected to attend. The soirée included Disney characters, live entertainment and plenty of refreshments.
The theme of the 2022 Boule was “the Magic of Excellence,” according to the Director of Inclusive Strategies for Walt Disney World, Michelle Stepney. Stepney said that Disney was honored to host the event and was also collaborating with the AKA sorority to create opportunities for HBCU students.
“There was mutual interest between the sorority and Disney to collaborate during their time in town for this city-wide convention that brought some 12k attendees to Orlando,” she said. “There is a lot of excitement for the Disney brand from the membership. It was particularly an honor to welcome the members of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority as they celebrated their conference theme, ‘the Magic of Excellence.’”
Disney also planned to establish educational and career resources throughout the conference to help undergraduate students attending HBCUs.
“In addition to hosting the private, after-hours welcome reception at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Theme Park, Disney was on-site at the convention with its Disney on the Yard initiative,” said Stepney.
“This workforce development effort provides educational and career resources for students at HBCUs and underrepresented students from other institutions. We are very interested in cultivating this relationship with the intention of establishing career connections for the undergraduate members of the sorority.”
The Alpha Kappa Alpha sorority currently has more than 300,000 members and was established in 1908. It was the first Greek-letter organization for Black women attending college. Famous names affiliated with the sorority include the late Maya Angelou, Jada Pinkett Smith, Alicia Keys, Coretta Scott King, Toni Morrison, Ella Fitzgerald and Rosa Parks.