Since 1997, Quay has done over 1,200 presentations to more than 500,000 students around the country. He has also spoken at conferences, youth groups, diversity training seminars, and a variety of other events. He is willing to address almost any audience, and can cater the presentation to what is requested.
Colleges are an ideal setting for the speaker once referred to as a “philosopher in blue jeans.” Quay’s distinct brand of communication keeps college audiences completely engrossed as he offers more than just the usual polarizing rhetoric of division and channels them toward thoughtful reflection.
Quay offers a unique perspective on racism, prejudice, and hatred in society. His insight stems not only from a formal education (B.A. in English, Bloomsburg University, PA), but also from worldwide travel to all 50 states, 27 countries, and 5 continents. His specific interactions with blue-collar America during his fifteen years of labor in the areas of landscaping, construction, and farming also contribute to to the unique perspective he brings.
This blend of knowledge and experience helps him connect with every member of the audience as he challenges these young men and women to examine their lives.
Quay Hanna is unlike any other high school speaker you have had over the years.
Despite his simple appearance, Quay brings a profound message of respect to the student population. Through the personal change he has made concerning his previously racist views, he encourages students to examine their own views and to challenge their own prejudices.
Students are immediately drawn to him before he ever says a word as his t-shirt, blue jeans, and tattoos imply that this assembly will be something out of the ordinary. After this initial connection, the students are even more pleased to learn that this is a presenter who speaks their language and understands their world. Quay’s unique blend of charisma, honesty, and humor keeps students engaged from the first to the last word that comes out of his mouth.
Quay Hanna has experienced a lot when it comes to both sides of the bullying issue.
As a middle school “dork,” Quay was picked on because of his looks, his personality, and his socioeconomic status. His daily struggle of going to school knowing he would be harassed is one with which current students will relate to.
In high school, Quay’s athleticism helped him flip the script and get in with the popular crowd. A great athlete, Quay became the one who harassed and belittled his fellow students. Referred to as “the meanest student in school” by a former classmate, Quay took out his previous frustrations on the weak and vulnerable in the student body.
Quay uses these experiences to offer perspective for both students getting bullied and those who do the bullying. His programs have proven effective in offering coping techniques to the harassed, but also in causing the bullies to think about the consequences of their actions. His funny, yet challenging, presentation will leave your middle school students thinking about the words they say and the things they do.
Quay uses the knowledge he has gained over the years as a student relations specialist to offer insight into the lives of those who become involved in hatred, prejudice, and violence. Working in this capacity in more than a dozen schools, Quay has had the opportunity to interact and counsel with members of every ethnic group and every school subculture, ultimately helping districts respond to serious tensions.
There are often concrete reasons why students choose to hate, and Quay’s insight offers teachers and administrators the opportunity for early intervention. He also speaks more broadly on why we don’t get along as humans and what steps we can take to bring peace to our schools, workforce, and community, including practical applications to help them work with their students – and each other – as the year progresses.
Quay has something to offer at almost every type of conference, event, and gathering. Not only can he cater a presentation to any particular audience or topic, but he also offers workshops that address issues on a more intricate level.
His primary keynote addresses the issue of understanding and respect in society. He tells his own story of change in these areas, and how he has used the mistakes of his past to encourage today’s youth to make better choices and decisions. His focus is on true tolerance, which means that people can disagree – even consider each other wrong – yet offer kindness and respect in their dissenting views.
Quay can also examine other topics of interest for breakout sessions. His expertise on human relations offers every audience the opportunity to find practical and applicable information to begin transformation of their communities.