Photos by JW McNay/The Collegian
MC Ready Freddie hypes up the crowd at the Hip-Hop Summit Feb. 27 on NE Campus. National motivation and performance group, Trill or Not Trill conducted the summit. Photos by JW McNay/The Collegian

By Hunter Krebel/reporter

A performance group explained how the foundations of hip-hop could be applied to leadership during the Hip-Hop Summit Feb. 27 on NE Campus.

The event of information and entertainment was conducted by the company Trill or Not Trill and aimed to show students how hip-hop went beyond just music.

“It’s not just about hip-hop,” Trill or Not Trill member Lenny Williams said. “Hip-hop is really the fun part of breaking down what’s most important, which is leadership. I’m hoping students understand our leadership styles so they can be present within their own opportunities in their workforce or their college or their organizations or their clubs they’re involved with.”

The summit began with Williams asking students for positive and negative words describing hip-hop. Students came up with positive words like “fun,” “storytelling,” “real,” “true” and “alive” and negative words including “misogyny,” “violence,” and “gangs.”

Williams then laid out what he called the three pillars of hip-hop: being magically creative, a voice for the voiceless and making something out of nothing.

“The great thing about hip-hop is that it’s a call to action,” he said to the students.

Students were also given a chance to get involved. Freddy B. Sanders, a NE student and part-time DJ, was invited up to perform a self-written rap. Other students were brought up later and pitted against each other in a dance-off.

The event concluded with a performance from the NE Movers Unlimited Dance Company, who performed to various hip-hop songs.

“I think it was great,” NE student Anna Knuckles said. “I learned a lot about life and how hip-hop is interactive with life and dreams.”

The summit provided a wake-up call, said NE student Zachary Mantakul.

“If you have opportunities, you have to seize it,” he said.

Sanders also voiced his approval after his performance.

“He [Williams] did a very good job at explaining the pros and cons to hip-hop and bringing your traditional hip-hop to what hip-hop stands for today,” Sanders said.