The Education and Enrichment Program (EEP) of West Angeles Church of God in Christ teamed up with the University of California (UC) and Assemblymember Sebastian Ridley-Thomas on April 24 to deliver a critical message to more than 60 South Los Angeles high school students.
The message was simple but profound – college is within your reach.
“Unfortunately, Black students are largely missing from California’s top public universities. They either do not qualify because of low academic achievement or they do not apply because they feel that college is not for them,” said West Angeles spokesperson.
“But, UC – the state’s most selective public university system – has taken notice. Yvette Gullatt, director of UC’s Office of Diversity and Engagement, is working to create diverse and inclusive campuses through outreach initiatives like Achieve UC.”
An important part of the effort is working with the directors of community-based nonprofits like Deacon John Wilson of West Angeles EEP to encourage and equip more students of color for college.
The event featured distinguished speakers including UC Irvine Student Affairs Vice Chancellor Dr. Thomas Parham and Umoja Community Transfer Director Karlos Carter, who worked to dispel common myths about college and educate the students in attendance on the available resources, scholarships, and services that will help them be accepted to college.
“This event was a step in the right direction to begin changing the statistics of low college enrollment among black youth. But, much greater collaborative effort among universities, community-based organizations, and politicians will be required to make a meaningful impact in Los Angeles’ inner city,” added the spokesperson. “The fight to help more black students to access higher education is just beginning.”