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Firestorm at Bethune-Cookman Heats Up Over Commencement Speaker

Not a good idea to invite the devil…

Thinking it is about time for some “regime change” at the College President level.

DeVos Commencement Speech Draws Protests

Fifty thousand signatures on protest petitions. Calls on the president of the university to resign. People on Twitter saying they’re mailing back their degrees.

It’s probably not what the leadership of Bethune-Cookman University was expecting when they announced their speaker for today’s commencement ceremony. But Education Secretary Betsy DeVos seems to bring a unique level of controversy almost everywhere she goes. And that’s especially true when it comes to historically black colleges like Bethune-Cookman.

Earlier this year, DeVos called HBCUs “real pioneers when it comes to school choice,” a remark she was forced to walk back after protests; in fact, these colleges were founded as the only option for students, when other colleges were still legally segregated. Just this week, DeVos found herself clarifying comments by President Trump that seemed to suggest that a key form of funding for HBCUs might be unconstitutional.

In announcing the invitation last week, Bethune-Cookman’s president, Edison O. Jackson, said DeVos’ “mission to empower parents and students resonates with the history and legacy” of Mary McLeod Bethune, the college’s founder.

Trinice McNally holds both a bachelor’s and master’s degree from BCU. She said that herself and many other alumni “were outraged” both by the invitation and by the allusion to Bethune’s legacy. “It’s a complete insult. There is no comparison.”

BCU did not immediately respond to requests for comment from NPR. They have been active on social media, posting a picture of empty cardboard boxes on Twitter with the hashtag “#Deception?” presumably referring to the petition drive; and posting a video on Facebook Live.

On the same day that they announced DeVos, May 1, the university released a second announcement in response to the widespread blowback. This time, President Jackson invoked academic freedom. “I am of the belief that it does not benefit our students to suppress voices that we disagree with, or to limit students to only those perspectives that are broadly sanctioned by a specific community.

Protests of speakers, particularly conservative speakers, have raged lately on campuses from the University of California, Berkeley to Middlebury College in Vermont. They have sometimes turned violent, and sparked a heated debate about free speech and modes of dissent. DeVos, meanwhile, often encounters protesters and is the first education secretary to receive security protection from the U.S. Marshals Service.

Commencement speakers, though, are more commonly chosen for celebration and uplift than for provocative messages.

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HBCUs and Trump

Interesting interview. Not sure where, other than Leli Baskerville, Roland dug his panel up from. The woman on the right hand side of the table, who isn’t identified is a world class Auntie Tommette, lying about what President Obama did for HBCUs.

The facts…

Under the Obama Administration, 1 million more African-American and Latino students have enrolled in college. What’s more, black and Hispanic students earned more than 270,000 more undergraduate degrees in 2013-2014 than in 2008-2009. This Administration remains focused on continuing to increase the number of students who successfully complete college. To that end, the Department has worked to make new opportunities available to HBCUs.

Federal funding to HBCUs has grown each year since 2009. Through the Higher Education Act, HBCUs received a $17 million funding increase this year—the largest increase for the federal Strengthening HBCUs program in six years. And President Obama’s FY 2017 budget seeks to maintain and strengthen these opportunities for HBCUs to build their capacity. The FY 2017 budget proposes $85 million in mandatory funding to HBCUs, an increase of $5 million from FY 2016, plus an additional $244.7 million in discretionary funds for Title III.

The Administration has also fought for and won a historic commitment to fully fund Pell Grants and expand student aid for millions of low-income students. Pell Grant funding for HBCU students increased significantly between 2007 and 2014, growing from $523 million to $824 million. This year, President Obama announced a plan to make sure that Pell Grants are fully funded, including inflationary adjustments, and used strategically by students to reduce time and cost for receiving a terminal degree. The President’s 2017 budget also proposes a $30 million HBCU and Minority Serving Institution Innovation for Completion Fund, to help students from low-income backgrounds overcome challenges and persist through graduation day.

The other facts –

grad-rates-2014-hbcu

The brutal truth is, at least the bottom half of these schools either need to be shut down or no longer receive federal support and funding. I would cut everything except the top 10 or 20. Close the doors on the rest, absorb them into their respective State Junior College System…Or install a granite marker where they used to be. Investing money in the top 20 schools would likely make a difference – especially in not throwing away money at the bottom 30. Spellman, Howard, Hampton, Morehouse, and Fisk have the capability to become competitive with the very best schools in America.

Time to cut bait or fish.

 
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Posted by on February 28, 2017 in Black Conservatives, Daily Chump Disasters

 

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Barnes and Noble Founders Donate $1 million to Spellman

A magnanimous gift to Spelman College.

Barnes & Noble founder gives Spelman College $1 million gift

The founder and chairman of Barnes & Noble Inc. and his wife have given $1 million to Spelman College in Atlanta.

The college said it planned to use the gift from Leonard and Louise Riggio to fund a scholars program in his name, and to support its planned arts and innovation center.

Leonard Riggio, founder and chairman of Barnes & Noble Inc. (center).

Leonard Riggio, founder and chairman of Barnes & Noble Inc. (center).

“From the moment I was surrounded by its warm embrace, I was head over heels in love with Spelman College, and especially with the beautiful people who study and teach there,” Riggio said of his visit to the college. “The whole of the place seems to have been lifted from the depths of our spirits, to the full realization of our hopes and dreams for a better America. If Spelman is not the paradigm of a great college, I do not know what is. The gift to the scholarship program and to the arts and innovation center from Louise and me commemorates one of the best days I’ve ever had.”

Half of the Riggios’ gift will be used to underwrite six outstanding Spelman students who have demonstrated stellar academic achievement and who are actively engaged in community service, the university said in a statement. The remaining $500,000 will be designated for the design and construction of an arts and innovation center that will house Spelman’s arts programs and Innovation Lab, which encourage creative collaborations at the intersection of the arts, technology, science and other liberal arts disciplines. Program planning for the facility is underway, according to the December announcement.

“Leonard and Louise Riggio have been longstanding supporters of education and the arts,” said Spelman President Mary Schmidt Campbell. “We welcome them as new donors to Spelman and welcome, too, their enthusiasm and faith in the values and mission of the College. Their generous gift supports the academic success of a group of talented, socially engaged students and, at the same time, helps the College launch the planning of a new facility that will encourage campus wide collaborations and community engagement.”

 
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Posted by on January 13, 2017 in Black History, The Post-Racial Life

 

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HBCU to Buckdance for Trump

Never heard of this school or even seen it on a list of HBCUs, Looked it up and it ranked 72nd out of 77 HBCUs in the country, with an enrollment of 750 students. And has an overall “D+” rating from at least one site. And it isn’t even listed on the US News and World Report list of Colleges and Universities.

It does apparently have a band…

Image result for Talladega College

Regardless – I am sure the School President is going to catch hell for this decision.

The school is known by its collection of  Hale Woodruff murials…So it is kind od hard to justify that with providing any support whatsoever to the Chumph.

Related image

From the Hale Woodruff “Armistad” Series

Historically black college: Band will march at inauguration

The president of a historically black college in Alabama says its band will perform in President-elect Donald Trump’s inaugural parade, despite a barrage of criticism.

Talladega College President Billy Hawkins announced the decision Thursday. It comes after the Presidential Inaugural Committee had announced that the Alabama band had accepted its invitation to march in the Jan. 20 parade.

The announcement followed several days of intense debate on social media. Some people voiced strong opposition, while others said it would be a good opportunity to perform in the parade.

Talladega bills itself as Alabama’s oldest private, historically black liberal arts college.

The college was founded in 1867.

 
 

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The Continuing Role of HBCUs

HBCUs percentage of college graduates is dropping. However, HBCU graduates still make up about 50-60% of those students matriculating to graduate studies in the STEM Fields.

One of the major issues with HBCUs has been graduation percentage. On average only about 35%. Spelman, Howard, Hampton, Morehouse, and Fisk are the only HBCUs with graduation rates above 50%. Despite issues the top HBCUs are graduating people competitive with anyone from the non-HBCU Universities in their fields.

Black Colleges Might Be Struggling, but Their Alums Are Thriving

African Americans who graduated from majority-minority colleges feel more professionally and personally fulfilled than their peers who attended predominantly white schools.

Anyone who has spoken with alums of a historically black college or university (HBCU) can attest, they really love their schools. Whether it’s the swarms of current and former students who travel to attend homecomings year after year, the (mostly) friendly competition among schools, or just the ferociousness with which grads defend and promote their alma maters, there’s something about most HBCUs that inspires intense loyalty.

A new poll from Gallup and Purdue University might help explain why.

The “Quad” at Howard University

The report takes a look at the post-graduation outcomes of a broad sampling of American college graduates to determine how they measured their own well-being, defined as physical health, social relationships, finances, goal achievement, and community engagement. The researchers then categorized individuals as either thriving, struggling, or suffering in each area. The method is highly subjective, but there were some noticeable differences, especially when it came to black college graduates: Graduates of HBCUs ranked their well-being higher in all five areas than their black peers who attended predominantly white institutions. Additionally, HBCU alums were more likely to say that they’re engaged and fulfilled at work and ranked significantly higher in measures of financial success and fulfillment than black grads who went to other schools.

This achievement is notable for HBCUs given the struggles that black Americans continue to face when it comes to completing college and finding gainful employment afterward, compared to graduates of other ethnicities. Black students are less likely than other ethnicities to complete a bachelor’s degree within six years. They also have a higher unemployment rate after graduation. When compared to other races in the Gallup poll, black grads ranked lowest on every measure of well-being except for social relationships. Black women ranked the lowest in most measures of well-being.

Part of the reason may be the education that HBCU students received while enrolled: HBCU grads were substantially more likely to say that they had professors who cared about them and mentors who helped them pursue their goals. They also felt certain that their school prepared them well for post-grad life. These feelings may help help explain why alums of HBCUs are so much more likely (49 percent vs. 34 percent for black grads who didn’t attend HBCUs) to say that their university is the perfect place for someone similar to them, and why they have so much affinity for these institutions, despite the fact that many of these colleges and universities are struggling.

But the strength of HBCUs may also derive from another resource, one that lives off-campus, and that is a robust and engaged alumni network. The warm feelings that HBCU grads have about their schools may stem from deeper feelings of belonging and connection created at such schools, and that can help create a sense of kinship not only among classmates, but among all grads, which makes them more open to assisting and mentoring the students who come after them.

AKAs Step

As more black Americans attend colleges outside of the HBCU system, some wonder if such institutions have outlived their usefulness. Attendance at the country’s 107 HBCUs as a share of total black-student enrollment has dropped in recent years. In 2010 through 2011, these schools accounted for 16 percent of black college graduates, in 1976 to 1977, the share was more than double that. The schools have a lower-than-average graduation rate: about 35 percent for HBCUs compared to 59 percent nationally, though that’s in part because these schools are more likely to enroll low-income, first-generation students, a population that’s more likely to drop out before finishing.

There are other problems, too. Morris Brown, an HBCU in Atlanta is struggling to stage a comeback after losing its accreditation years ago. Howard University in D.C., which remains one of the most popular and well-known HBCUs has publicly struggled with financing and has been forced to cut staff and been subjected to credit downgrades in recent years. Fisk University in Nashville was placed on probation by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges  until the university overhauled its finances a few years ago. With all of their challenges, the survival of many of these schools—once the only places where black Americans could get a college education—is largely uncertain.

But for now, both alums and current students aren’t hesitant about supporting and promoting the value of these institutions. I conducted a much less robust, more informal survey, taking to social media to ask HBCU alums if they had good feelings about their college experience. The answers were largely similar to Gallup’s results: People were mostly positive, noting that the benefits of their education were as much personal as they were professional…Read the Rest Here

 
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Posted by on October 30, 2015 in The Post-Racial Life

 

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Sportsmanship? Not Anymore at Virginia State

This is one of those things that makes you go WTF!

This one is as bad as the Tonya Harding/Nancy Kerrigan disgrace, where Harding’s husband attempted to disable Kerrigan so she could not compete against Harding in the skating championships.

It may well have been that Harding was guilty of nothing more than exceptionally low standards in terms of the men she married…

So what is the Virginia State Football Players excuse who took on the opposing quarterback in a bathroom at the Championship Banquet… 5-1?

I hope these morons get to spend a few days behind bars to consider their transgressions…And their scholarships revoked as a warning to any  other athlete.

Rudy Johnson, WSSU Quarterback

CIAA championship canceled after Winston-Salem State QB is attacked

Winston-Salem State quarterback Rudy Johnson was expected to lead his team on the field Saturday as it attempts to win its third consecutive Central Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (CIAA) football championship. But after an alleged incident at a celebratory banquet Friday, Johnson won’t be able to play, and neither will anyone else.

The CIAA on Friday night canceled the game between Winston-Salem State and Virginia State in the wake of the incident, as well as the conference’s volleyball championships that also were to be held in Winston-Salem, N.C., this weekend. The move comes after Johnson was allegedly beaten by a group of Virginia State football players in a bathroom of a WSSU campus building during the CIAA football banquet.

The Winston-Salem Journal obtained an arrest warrant from Winston-Salem State campus police for Lamont Britt, a Virginia State sophomore running back, who was charged with misdemeanor assault inflicting serious injury. According to the Journal, Britt is being held in Forsyth County (N.C.) Jail with bond set at $7,500 and has a date in Forsyth District Court set for Dec. 9.

A voice message and email from USA TODAY Sports to campus police lieutenant and crime prevention officer Henry Gray were not returned.

The university’s associate athletics director for media relations, Kevin Manns, confirmed to USA TODAY Sports that Johnson had been treated and released from a nearby hospital. According to the arrest warrant, Johnson had been hit in the face and head and suffered a head laceration and swollen eye.

In announcing the cancellation, CIAA commissioner Jacquie Carpenter said in a statement, “Our singular focus is on the safety and security of the CIAA’s student-athletes and those who follow them. It is important that everyone involved in the CIAA embody our mission every day by acting as upstanding individuals on and off the field. We must work together to hold each other to higher standards of responsible judgment and conduct because we must demand that if we are to succeed.

“We did not make this decision lightly, as its impact is far and wide – affecting our student-athletes, alumni, fans, sponsors and more. But the CIAA has long had policies to encourage responsible behavior, and must consider what is necessary to assure days like today are not repeated, ever.”

Winston-Salem State Chancellor Donald Reaves said in a statement Friday night, “I am saddened to report that at today’s CIAA pre-championship game luncheon held at the Anderson Center of the WSSU campus that our starting quarterback, Rudy Johnson, was viciously beaten by one or more members of the Virginia State football team.

“There is no excuse for the behavior of the Virginia State players. One suspect has admitted to his role in the attack and has been arrest on criminal assault charges. The University Police Department is attempting to identify the other VSU players who were involved. Today’s event was supposed to be a celebration for both teams and for all the players who were being recognized for an outstanding season. The actions from the Virginia State players certainly changed the outcome for everyone.”

On its university web site, Virginia State released a statement reading, “Virginia State University is aware of an incident involving student athletes from Winston Salem State and Virginia State Universities. VSU officials are fully cooperating with the CIAA in their investigation, and as a result, will not be able to comment any further.”

Johnson, a junior from San Diego who transferred from Texas Southern earlier this year, has led his team to a 9-1 record and was named the CIAA’s first-team quarterback on Wednesday. Winston-Salem State has been ranked as a leading contender for the 2013 NCAA Division II football playoffs after reaching the championship game in 2012.

 

 

 
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Posted by on November 16, 2013 in Domestic terrorism

 

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FAMU Marching 100 Return

The Marching 100 returned yesterday to a Half Time show between FAMU and Mississippi Valley State. It’s reputation as one of the elite Marching Band units at the College level is sadly tarnished, and it’s reputation as an HBCU tradition is at it’s lowest point. Hopefully the new School President, Band Leader, and students can return the unit, and the traditions it represented before the scandal back to the heights the band once enjoyed.

FAMU band makes first appearance in nearly two years after hazing incident

Twenty-two months after Florida A&M University’s band was suspended in the wake of a hazing death of a drum major, it was back on the field Saturday, performing at the season-opener against Mississippi Valley State.

The Marching 100 was not allowed to perform after Robert Champion collapsed and died after a hazing ritual on a bus in November 2011. That suspension was lifted in June, after the resignation of the band’s longtime director and the university president.

The scandal resulted in charges of manslaughter and felony hazing being placed against 15 former band members. Seven have made plea deals, another has a deal but has not been sentenced and the other seven await trial, according to the Associated Press.

The parents of the hazing victim, who have filed wrongful death lawsuits against FAMU and the bus company, told the AP that they believed the return of the band was “too soon.”

“I don’t see anything that’s different to ensure the safety of those students,” Pam Champion said. “Everything that has been put in place is not something that was done voluntarily.”

Larry Robinson, the university’s interim president, announced the decision to strike up the band, saying it would be “a model of excellence for other bands across this nation. It will actually focus on its founding principles of character, academics, leadership, marching and service.”

On Saturday, the band was back on the field at Orlando’s Citrus Bowl.

 
 

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