As director of Black excellence and achievement, one of my goals is to increase the number of Black students on campus. Therefore, it is imperative that our university is present in Black community spaces; creates a mentorship program that engages students, faculty, staff and alumni; and gives the students a glimpse of the HBCU (Historically Black Colleges and Universities) experience in Orange County. In my role, I aim to create a sense of space through programming, events and partnerships.
Black Excellence and Achievement is aimed at creating intentional community spaces for Black students to be their authentic selves through programs and events. Some of these include bi-weekly Brothers Real Talks and Sister Circles; the inaugural Black Family Reunion during Homecoming weekend; Black Student Retreat; Friendsgiving; Higher Learning and Wakanda Forever movie screenings; and collaborations with the Black Student Union and the Black Staff and Faculty Forum. All programs and events provide Black students a space to be seen, valued, and develop a sense of belonging. Additionally, Black Excellence and Achievement manages the Black Resource Guide on Canvas which serves as a Black community communication hub, and the @chapmanblackexcellence Instagram page.
Black Excellence and Achievement is creating partnerships with local community colleges and their Black cultural identity centers to create a pipeline to bring students to campus. Additionally, we are working on partnerships with CSUF and UCI to create a coalition of Black Students in Orange County.
We are also working with the Office of Student Engagement to bring a Historically Black Fraternity and Sorority on campus, and I’m proud to report that we are currently in talks with Alpha Kappa Alpha Fraternity, Inc. and Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. These organizations would enhance our culture of Black Excellence on campus. Additionally, Black Excellence and Achievement is working with local community organizations such as 100 Black Women of Orange County to host admissions workshops and the OC Justice Initiative to be more visible within the community while informing students of the resources that are available within the community.