Oakwood University’s Open Your Mind Lecture Series will continue on Monday, April 19, at 7:00 p.m., welcoming Nia Long, one of the country’s most talented actresses. The presentation will take place in Ashby Auditorium on the Oakwood University campus, located at 7000 Adventist Boulevard. After Long’s parents divorced when she was a toddler, her mother worked at various low-paying jobs—despite having two master's degrees—which resulted in financial straits for the mother and daughter. Long’s motivation to be successful was driven by her desire to help ease her mother's financial burden. Long received training from acting coach Betty Bridges (mother of former child star Todd Bridges), and has developed into a charismatic actress who possesses equal parts beauty and talent. Building a reputation as an actress of exceptional range, Long has delivered outstanding work on box office hits, independent features and television, making her film debut in Director John Singleton’s acclaimed Boyz ‘N the Hood. She has established herself as a strong presence in romantic dramas and comedies, carving out a niche in such films as Soul Food, Love Jones and The Best Man. She has also ventured into a number of other genres, as demonstrated by her roles in Stigmata, The Boiler Room and In Too Deep. Long has also expanded her range to directing.Long’s success has afforded her the opportunity to give back to the communities that have long appreciated her work. In tandem with her evolving career which spans genre and audience, she also serves her community. Most recently, Long was honored by the HerShe Group, a non-profit organization devoted to the development of young women in foster care, where Long serves as a member of the board. The group’s event was held in Long’s honor for making a difference in the lives of many young girls in the Los Angeles community.
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