Six projects approved under the Anti-Black Racism Student Leadership Experience Grants program involve a range of approaches to dismantling barriers caused by racial oppression, says Marium Tolson-Murtty.
Strategic planning officer for anti-Black racism initiatives, she led the adjudication process, which awarded the $10,000 grants to support co-curricular activities through education, cultivation, and preservation of Black culture and history.
“I am proud of these excellent projects,” Tolson-Murtty says. “We had originally planned to approve just five, but the submissions were so good, we expanded the inaugural tranche of funding.”
The approved projects are:
“Black Leadership Excellence,” which will train Residence Assistance and education residence students on anti-Black racism efforts on campus, including workshops, unconscious bias training, and more. Student team lead Brittney Ketwaroo will work with sociology professor Natalie Delia Deckard and residence life co-ordinator Lynn Charron.
“Identifying Barriers and Creating Opportunities to Ensure Success of Black Studentss in the Faculty of Engineering,” aimed at recruiting Black students into engineering. Students Staecey-Merveille Ngabire and Aimée-Larissa Dushime will work with professors Rajesh Seth and Jennifer Jorhrendt.
“We Were Here: Recovering the Stories of Windsor's McDougall Street Corridor,” a research project to document the history of McDougall Street, home to Black families that are descendants of the Underground Railroad. Student team lead Willow Key will work with Heidi Jacobs and archivist Sarah Glassford of the Leddy Library, and Irene Moore Davis of the Essex County Black Historical Research Society.
“The Forgotten Ones: The Impact of COVID-19 on Black Families and Black Child Welfare Survivors Dealing with Child Protection,” coursework assignments to advance understanding of the implications of COVID-19 for Black child welfare survivors. Student team lead Josh Lamers will work with law professor Venkatesh Vasanthi.
“Coaching and Mentorship Programs for Black Female Athletes,” education and engagement to promote Black female athletes into coaching certification programs. Kinesiology professor Kevin Milne, track coach Marcia Milne, and Lancer Recreation co-ordinator Sandra Ondracka will work with student leads to be named.
“Understanding Barriers to Higher-Education at the University of Windsor Rooted in Racial Oppression, especially among Black Prospective Students,” recruitment and engagement of prospective Black students to the University of Windsor. Chris Busch, assistant vice-president of enrolment management, his team, and cross-campus collaborators will work with student leads to be named.
The grants are intended to foster student-led research and leadership skills, says Clinton Beckford, UWindsor vice-president for equity, diversity, and inclusion.
“These exciting projects will enhance the student experience and promote the training of highly creative and motivated students,” he says. “These valuable career-related transferable skills will provide future opportunities while cultivating awareness and advocacy for issues related to the experiences of Black people.”
More information on the progress of each of these projects will be forthcoming in the months ahead. Learn more about the Anti-Black Racism Student Leadership Experience Grants program.