Monthly Archives: March 2021

Baylor University Issues a Report on Its Founders’ Ties to Slavery and the Confederacy

First and foremost, the report stated that the institution will continue to be known as Baylor University and the statue of namesake Judge R.E.B. Baylor will maintain in its current location on Founders Mall, despite the fact that he enslaved people.

Higher Education Grants or Gifts of Interest to African Americans

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

In Memoriam: Robert Daniel Flanigan Jr., 1949-2021

This past December, Danny Flanigan celebrated his fiftieth year on the staff at Spelman College. At the time of hi death, he was executive vice-president, treasurer, and chief investment officer.

The First Black Editor-in-Chief of the Law Review at Georgia State University

Jeannine Holmes is a 2008 graduate of the University of Virginia, where she majored in English. After studying design in New York City, She moved to Atlanta in 2016 to work in the healthcare field. Later she enrolled in law school part-time at Georgia State University.

UCLA Analysis Finds Another Racial Health Disparity During the COVID-19 Pandemic

The study found that during the pandemic, African Americans may have had worse access than Whites to outpatient care and thus were less likely to avoid hospitalizations for non-COVID-19–related conditions. This increased African Americans' risk of hospital-acquired infections, the researchers say.

David C. Wilson Named Leader of the School of Public Policy at the University of California, Berkeley

Dr. Wilson currently serves as senior associate dean in the College of Arts and Sciences and is a professor of political science and psychological and brain sciences at the University of Delaware. He will become dean of the Richard and Rhoda Goldman School of Public Policy at the University of California, Berkeley on July 1.

Black Women Who “Hunker Down” in High Violence Areas Have Altered Genes in Immune Cells

The chronic stress of living in neighborhoods with high rates of violence and poverty alters gene activity in immune cells, according to a new study of low-income single Black mothers on the South Side of Chicago conducted by researchers at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, the University of Kentucky and the University of California, Los Angeles.

Patricia Ramsey Appointed President of Medgar Evers College in Brooklyn, New York

Dr. Ramsey, whose appointment is effective May 1, will be the first woman to serve as the president of Medgar Evers College. A biologist by training, she comes to CUNY from the Thurgood Marshall College Fund. Earlier, she was provost and vice president for academic affairs at Lincoln University in Pennsylvania.

Scholars Assemble a Massive New Database on Enslaved People

Scholars affiliated with the Hutchins Center for African & African American Research at Harvard University, the College of Arts and Humanities at the University of Maryland, the MATRIX Center for Digital Humanities & Social Sciences at Michigan State University, and other institutions have established a new open-source database called Enslaved: Peoples of the Historical Slave Trade.

The First African American Dean of the Business School at the University of Portland in Oregon

Michael DeVaughn has served on the faculty at the Opus College of Business at the University of St. Thomas in Minneapolis, Minnesota, since 2008. Earlier, he taught at the University of Minnesota. His scholarship has centered on organizational learning and entrepreneurship, as well as the delivery of business education.

In Memoriam: Lee Vernon Stiff, 1949-2021

In 1983, Dr. Stiff joined the faculty of mathematics and science education at North Carolina State University. He rose through the ranks to become a full professor of mathematics education. At the time of his retirement in 2020, Dr. Stiff was the associate dean for faculty and academic affairs in the College of Education at the university.

Five Black Scholars Who Are Taking on New Assignments

The five Black scholars in new roles are Lauren Haynes at Duke University in North Carolina, Christopher Wayne Robinson at Pennsylvania State University-Greater Allegheny, Melanie McReynolds at Pennsylvania State University, Fitzroy B. Beckford at the University of Vermont, and Naïma Moustaïd-Moussa at Texas Tech University.

Prairie View A&M University in Texas Creates the Toni Morrison Writing Program

The new Writing Program - supported by a $3 million donation from philanthropist and novelist MacKenzie Scott - will include a Toni Morrison Writer-in-Residence. Appointed annually, a different writer each year will have a one-year visiting appointment at Prairie View, where that individual will offer a seminar in writing.

New Administrative Posts in Higher Education for Four African Americans

Taking on new administrative duties are Robyn S. Hadley at the University of Virginia, Shaun Lewis at Dillard University in New Orleans, Debbi Howard at Tennessee State University in Nashville, and Shajuana L. Dennard at Talladega College in Alabama.

Leaders Propose a New “Strategic Direction” for Historically Black Bennett College

Leaders at Bennett College, a historically Black liberal arts education institution for women in Greensboro, North Carolina, have issued a blueprint for a new strategic direction for the college that emphasizes a holistic approach to support Bennett’s student body, focusing on physical, emotional, social, economic, and spiritual well-being.

Nicole Ausmer to Receive the Outstanding Achievement in Diversity Award

The award is presented by the National Association of Campus Activities to individuals that positively contribute to the development of programs and services promoting cultural diversity, understanding, and awareness. Dr. Ausmer is director of Student Activities and Leadership Development at the University of Cincinnati.

A New Women’s Business Center Established on the Campus of Virginia Union University

The center will serve as a resource to provide business counseling, training, technical assistance and networking for entrepreneurs in the Richmond market. The program is made possible by a grant-funded through the Small Business Administration.

Four African Americans Who Have Been Hired to Diversity Posts at Colleges and Universities

Taking on new roles as diversity officers are Pierre Morton at Franklin Pierce University in Rindge, New Hampshire, Harris Akinloye at Pepperdine University in Malibu, California, Keesha Burke-Henderson at Randolph College in Lynchburg, Virginia, Mary J. Wardell-Ghirarduzzi at the University of the Pacific in Stockton, California, and Constance Porter at Rice University in Houston.

In Memoriam: Barbara A. Newsome, 1946-2021

Dr. Newsome joined the faculty at Mississippi Valley State University in 2001 as an assistant professor in the social work department. During her tenure, Dr. Newsome served as the interim chair of the department, internship field coordinator and the director of the master of social work degree program.

Online Articles That May Be of Interest to JBHE Readers

Each week, JBHE will provide links to online articles that may be of interest to our readers. Here are this week’s selections.

Recent Books 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. The books included are on a wide variety of subjects and present many different points of view.

Africana Studies Becomes an Academic Department at Bowdoin College in Brunswick, Maine

The African studies program at Bowdoin College in Brunswick, Maine, was established more than a half century ago. Now for the first time, it will be an academic department at the college.

Higher Education Grants or Gifts of Interest to African Americans

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

The First Black President of Bentley University in Waltham, Massachusetts

Since 2019, Dr. Chrite has served as president of Bethune-Cookman University, a historically Black educational institution in Daytona Beach, Florida. Before taking on that position, he was dean of the Daniels College of Business at the University of Denver. 

Universities Use Software That Assigns Race as a High Impact Predictor of Student Success or Failure

The study, from the nonprofit newsroom The Markup, found that more than 500 universities across the country use risk algorithms to evaluate their students. The analysis found "large disparities in how the software treats students of different races, and the disparity is particularly stark for Black students, who were deemed high risk at as much as quadruple the rate of their White peers."

Maryland Legislature Approves a $577 Million Settlement of a Long-Running HBCU Lawsuit

The current legislation, passed by overwhelming majorities in both houses of the legislature, calls for payment of $577 million over a 10-year period beginning in 2023. Funds will be used for scholarships, faculty recruitment and development, and to develop new academic programs.

Who is Doing a Better Job at Social Distancing, Blacks or Whites?

The Center for Economic and Social Research at the University of Southern California has released a new report on how Americans are dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic. The report breaks down several survey responses by racial and ethnic group. Results show that Black Americans take social distancing far more seriously than White Americans.

Cynthia Anthony Appointed President of Lawson State Community College in Alabama

Dr. Anthony has been serving as interim president at the college since September 2020. Prior to her appointment as interim president, Dr. Anthony was interim vice chancellor for student success for the Alabama Community College System.

Yale University Study Looks to End Racial Bias in Emergency Room Treatment

A new study led by Isaac Agboola, a third-year emergency room resident at Yale New Haven Medical Center, examines how bias influences emergency department treatment, particularly decisions over which patients must be restrained and/or sedated.

John McKnight Selected as the Next Dean of Haverford College in Pennsylvania

Since 2016, Dr. McKnight has been the dean of institutional equity and inclusion at Connecticut College. Prior to joining the staff of Connecticut College, he worked at Lafayette College in Easton, Pennsylvania, as dean of intercultural development. Earlier, he served as director of multicultural affairs and a coordinator of residence life at Lehigh University in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania.

Three African Americans Scholars Appointed to New Faculty Positions

Andre Marshall will join the faculty at the School of Engineering at George Mason University. James Haywood Rolling Jr. was appointed co-director of Lender Center for Social Justice at Syracuse University and Chryl Laird has been named the Marvin H. Green Jr. Assistant Professor of Government at Bowdoin College in Brunswick, Maine.

Howard University Looks to Expand Opportunities in Investment Banking for African Americans

Howard University recently announced that it has received a $10 million gift from HPS Investment Partners and The Kapnick Foundation. The gift will be used to create the HPS Center for Financial Excellence at the School of Business. The center will focus on helping students better prepare for careers in private investment and investment banking.

University of Arkansas’ Jeffrey Allen Murdock Wins the 2021 Grammy Music Educator Award

The prestigious Grammy Music Educator Award recognizes current educators who have made a significant and lasting contribution to the field of music education and who demonstrate a commitment to the broader cause of maintaining music education in the schools.

Goldman Sachs to Partner With HBCUs With the Aim to Help One Million Black Women

Goldman Sachs is partnering with Hope Enterprise Corporation, mayors, and HBCUs – organizations with significant ties to the communities in which they operate – across the American South to distribute and lend capital to Black women.

Five African Americans Who Were Named to New Administrative Posts at Colleges and Universities

Taking on new administrative posts are Willie Jude II at the University of Wisconsin-Parkside, Laraine Davis at Maryville University, Parice Bowser at the University of Arkansas, Lowell K. Davis at the University of North Carolina at Wilmington, and Solomon Tention at Dallas College.

A Long Overdue Honor for the Fisk Jubilee Singers

The Fisk Jubilee Singers were established in 1871 and have traveled the world raising money for the historically Black university, But until now the group had never won a Grammy Award. But this year they won Best Roots Gospel Album for "Celebrating Fisk! (The 150th Anniversary Album)."

Latest News