Monthly Archives: October 2015

University of Missouri Announces Required Diversity Training After Racist Incidents

After two racial incidents on campus, the university's chancellor called for an end to hate and announced mandatory training for faculty, staff, and all incoming students.

Oregon State University Libraries Partners With a Library at a Nigerian University

The "sister" libraries will participate in staff exchanges and research projects. Members of the staff of the libraries will participate in virtual seminars and academic meetings and the two libraries will exchange reference and other library materials.

Ohio University Scholar Elected President of Journalism That Matters

Michelle Ferrier is associate dean for innovation, research/creative activity, and graduate studies at the Scripps College of Communication at Ohio University in Athens. She holds a Ph.D. from the University of Central Florida.

In Memoriam: Blanche Macdonald Francis, 1925-2015

A former instructor of modern dance at two universities, Blanche Macdonald Francis was the "First Lady" of Xavier University in New Orleans for more than 45 years.

Is Bias Responsible for the Racial Disparity in Pedestrian Deaths?

A study by researchers at the University of Arizona and Portland State University found that African Americans on average had to wait 32 percent longer than Whites before drivers would yield to them in crosswalks.

Marlon James Wins the 2015 Man Booker Prize

Marlon James, an associate professor of English at Macalester College in St. Paul, Minnesota, won the 2015 Man Booker Prize, which recognizes what the judges believe is the best novel written in the English language in the previous year.

University Study Finds U.S. Urban Schools Aren’t Measuring Up

The University of Washington study found that there has been little or no academic progress in these largely minority urban schools. In 30 of the 50 cities, less than 15 percent of the students in the urban public schools took either the ACT or SAT college entrance examination.

Leadership Change at Jackson State University

James C. Renick, provost at Jackson State University in Mississippi, resigned abruptly without explanation. He was replaced by Evelyn J. Leggette who was promoted to fill the vacancy.

A “Black-Sounding” Name Makes Whites Assume a Larger, More Dangerous Person

A new study by researchers at UCLA finds that Whites assume that any person with a Black-sounding name is similar in characteristics to a person with a White-sounding name who they were told has a criminal record.

Students Wear Blackface at UCLA Party

The Sigma Phi Epsilon fraternity and the Alpha Phi sorority at the University of California, Los Angeles held a "Kanye Western" party. Some White students wore baggy pants and used blackface.

A Haunting Photographic Essay on Morris Brown College

The University of Georgia Press has published a striking new book chronicling the troubles of historically Black Morris Brown College in Atlanta.

Five Black Scholars Taking on New Assignments in Higher Education

The scholars in new teaching roles ate Carolyn Barnes at Duke University, Tondra-Loder-Jackson at the University of Alabama Birmingham, H. Shellae Versey at Wesleyan University, Kisha Lashley at the University of Virginia, and Vanessa Tyson at Scripps College.

New Accelerated Degree Program in Speech-Language Pathology at Howard University

Students will need at least a 3.5 grade point average in order to apply to the program. Students can complete both preprofessional undergraduate and a master's degree in speech-language pathology in five years.

Three African American Educators Receive Notable Honors

The honorees are Thomas Calhoun of Jackson State University, Conella Coulter Brown, one of the first Black students at the University of Missouri-Kansas City, and James Franklin Densler of the Morehouse School of Medicine.

The HBCU Challenge Looks to Collect Books for Prison Libraries

Grambling State University in Louisiana, has issued the HBCU Challenge to other historically Black college and universities to conduct book drives for prisons in their states.

New Administrative Positions in Higher Education for Five African Americans

The appointees are Stevie L. Lawrence II at Fort Valley State University, Francene Gilmer at Kentucky State University, Joslyn DiPasalegne at Claflin University, Paulette Patterson Dilworth at the University of Alabama Birmingham, and Cindy R. Love at St. Augustine's University.

Savannah State University Partners in a Dual-Degree Program in Forensic Genetics

Students who complete the five-year program will receive a bachelor's degree in forensic science from Savannah State University and a master's degree in forensic genetics from the University of North Texas.

The Nation’s Colleges and Universities With the Most Diverse Student Bodies

The Rutgers University campus in Newark, New Jersey, was deemed to have the most diverse student body in the country among large national universities. Blacks make up 18 percent of the enrollments at the Newark campus.

Task Force Considers Changing Name of the Stadium at the University of Maryland

Student groups have called on the university to strip the name of H.C. Byrd from the on-campus stadium. The students say that Byrd, who was president of the university from 1935 to 1954, "barred Blacks from participating in sports and enrolling into the University until 1951."

Higher Education Grants of Interest to African Americans

Here is this week’s news of grants to historically Black colleges and universities or for programs of particular interest to African Americans in higher education.

Recent Books That May Be of Interest to African American Scholars

The Journal of Blacks in Higher Education regularly publishes a list of new books that may be of interest to our readers. Here are the latest selections.

Ithaca College Aims to Increase the Diversity of Its Faculty

The new guidelines will include training for search committee chairs on tactics to make their searches more inclusive. Candidates from minority groups will be included in semi-finalist and finalist pools for open positions.

George Mason University Partners With an African Nonprofit Organization

The School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution at George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia, has signed an agreement with 72 Africa, a nonprofit organization dedicated to establishing sustainable peace environments throughout Africa.

Two Flagship State Universities Report Progress on Student Diversity

Blacks are 5.3 percent of the first-year class at the University of Texas at Austin, up from 4.2 percent a year ago. At the University of Colorado at Boulder, the number of African American undergraduates students is up 8 percent from a year ago.

Two Black Scholars Named Co-Editors of New Book Series on Africana Religions

Edward Curtis is a professor of religious studies at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis. Sylvester A. Johnson is an associate professor of African American studies and religious studies at Northwestern University.

Toni Morrison Awarded the UCLA Medal

Toni Morrison, professor emerita at Princeton University, was awarded the Pulitzer Prize in 1988. In 1993, she was the first African American woman to win a Nobel Prize. On October 5, she received the UCLA Medal for "distinguished academic and professional achievement."

Interim President Says Fisk University Still Faces “Tremendous Challenges”

Despite a $30 million cash infusion from an agreement sharing its art collection, Fisk University still faces a challenging financial outlook, according to it new interim president Frank L. Sims.

New Leadership for African American Studies at the University of Maryland

Oscar Barbarin holds the Wilson H. Elkins Professorship and is the new chair of the department of African American studies. Judge Alexander Williams Jr. was appointed director of the Center for Education, Justice, and Ethics.

New Online Fundraising Site Aims to Raise $105 Million for HBCUs

Former basketball superstar Tracy McGrady provided $105,000 in seed money to develop the software and a website that allows real-time donations and pledges from 150 million smartphone users in the United States.

Honors and Awards for Four African American Scholars

The honorees are Harold Franklin, the first Black student at Auburn University, the late Ella Lee Kelley of Southern University, Patrick Hawkins of the College of Nursing at Michigan State University, and Keith Whitfield of Duke University.

Alabama A&M University Refinances Its Debt

A new package deal with the U.S. Department of Education will refinance $65 million in debt, saving the university $400,000 annually. Also the university will receive a new $30 million loan for capital projects on campus.

Online Articles That May Be of Interest to JBHE Readers

From time to time, The Journal of Blacks in Higher Education will provide links to online articles that may be of interest to our readers. Here are this week’s selections.

Study Finds That Schools in the United States Serve to Widen Inequality

Lead author Professor William Schmidt of Michigan State University says that "the belief that schools are the great equalizer, helping students overcome the inequalities of poverty is a myth."

The United Negro College Fund Receives a $50 Million Pledge From the Lilly Endowment

The grant is the second largest gift received by the UNCF since its founding in 1944. The money will be used to fund career development programs at UNCF member institutions.

How Broadband Internet Access Fueled a Rise in Hate Crimes

Researchers at the University of Minnesota and New York University found that in counties where broadband Internet access became readily available in the early years of the century, the number of hate crimes increased by an average of 20 percent.

The New Director of African and African American Studies at the University of Arkansas

Pearl Dowe is an associate professor of political science in the J. William Fulbright College of Arts and Sciences at the university. She has been affiliated with the Black studies program since 2008.

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