The School of Education held a two-day intensive recruitment and professional development event for students from historically black institutions, in a program designed to assist the students in pursuing further educational opportunities.
The “EduConnections” event was organized by Patricia Harris, director of recruitment for the School of Education.
“This program is designed to create affirming spaces for minority students and continue and strengthen relationships with HBCUs, minority serving institutions, and academic programs across the state that promote access to higher education and diversity on college campuses,” Harris said.
Nine students currently enrolled at historically black colleges and one high school student took part in the program. Advisors, including two from the service organization Profound Gentlemen, also took part in the program.
Participants met with School of Education faculty and engaged in sessions at Carolina’s Writing Center and the University Career Services offices which offered a “Building Your Brand” seminar.
Fouad Abd-El-Khalick, dean of the School of Education, said the School would continue and expand the “EduConnections” events.
“Our School is committed to attracting and educating educational professionals from minority and underrepresented populations,” he said. “The underrepresentation of minority educators in our institutions of public education is very troubling and continues to be rather large. Concerted and wide-ranging efforts to address this gap are much needed, and EduConnections is one of these efforts. This launching event has been very promising.”
Harris said that among her goals for the program were to expose participants to possible careers in education.
“We hoped to engage with students from underrepresented groups and help cultivate and realize their interest in becoming educators,” Harris said. “We need to work harder to encourage minority students, and particularly men of color, to enter education careers so that the educator workforce in our schools reflects the full diversity of the student population.”