Published September 19th, 2014 in Brotherhood

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The Brotherhood is a program designed for male student of color. Started in Spring 2014, we are serving our 3rd cohort of students. Below are the pillars that drives the program:



Through discussion and activities in and out of the classroom students get to know each other in depth. They realize that although they are different, they also have many similarities. It is these similar experiences that also allow them to have a unique understanding of each other’s experiences. It is the forming of brotherhood that allows them to push each other towards success, to “have each other’s backs”, and to believe in each other. The sharing of these experiences and the relationships they built with each other fosters a sentiment that this is just not another class, that this is a program that merits their effort. The support established among each other was like no other in that they are willing to make sacrifices for each other.

Critical Consciousness:

Learning to perceive social, political, and economic inequities in order to take action against them and change the status quo. It is their critical consciousness that allows them to perceive their academic struggles differently. They still recognize their individual responsibility in their academics, but they become more conscious of other factors including inequities that lead to their academic struggles. This awareness opens the possibility for students to chart a course to overcome those barriers. It is pivotal that students gain an understanding and critique of inequities, but also to become aware of the possibilities to transform and transcend these realities. From these discussions, students make connections of what change they can start being a part of now. They become motivated to take what they learn in the classroom to action in their community

Family and Education:

The Brotherhood emphasizes that families are a source of support students must access to be successful in education. Contrary to the message students receive about their families as barriers to their education, students’ families are a source of support in that they role model, provide financial support, and are a source of motivation for many students to pursue their education. The Brotherhood makes an explicit effort to incorporate students’ families into the curriculum and discussions. These discussions give students the opportunity to reflect on their family and to identify and discuss connections between their family and their education. These discussions set the stage for students to reflect on and revalue the contributions of their family in supporting their education. This counters the messages often received that school is a “waste of time” and instills a motivation that connects education to a bigger purpose.

Bigger purpose:

A key pillar to the program is that students are able to identify a purpose for their education. For many of the students, they first need to revalue the contributions of their family and understand the connection between their family and their education before they are able to identify the purpose for their education. For some of the students, it is developing a critical consciousness that lead them to identify a bigger purpose for their education. Being able to analyze social and educational inequities motivate students to identify their education as a means towards struggling for social and educational change for the prosperity of their communities.

Service Leadership:

At the core of the Brotherhood Program is service leadership. Service leadership provides students the opportunity to put into practice what they learn in the classroom to transform and transcend the realities of inequities in our communities. Service leadership develops students leadership skills, public speaking skills, expands their networks, and provides experience in areas that may be closely related to their major or career interests. Most importantly, service leadership allows students to see education as a tool for liberation and social justice as opposed to just needing an education to learn so that they can get a good job.

Academic Support

Through an organized study, students have support completing assignments and clarifying concepts from their classes.

Program Components

Cohort Model

Cohort model is designed to provide a constant support system from the first semester the student enrolls in the Brotherhood Program up to their educational goal completion. In the first semester in the program students enroll in COOP/Counseling( We need to decide this soon) course that builds the foundation for students in developing a brotherhood, increasing leadership skills, and learning to utilize education as a means for prosperity for our families and communities. Following the first semester in the program, students will continue to take one class per semester as a cohort.

Peer Mentoring

Second and third year Brotherhood students will serve as peer mentors to incoming first year Brotherhood students. This creates a leadership opportunity for second and third year Brotherhood students while providing a welcoming environment, college adjustment support, and information of critical resources on campus for first year Brotherhood students. The peer mentoring component also creates a sense of responsibility for each other that allows them to push each other towards success.

Leadership Development

Through instruction in the first semester course and through service learning opportunities facilitated by mentors students will gain leadership skills and have an opportunity to put into practice what they have learned in the classroom. Service learning opportunities will take form through the development of a student club that results in students identifying needs in their campus and off campus community that they will work in unity towards addressing.


The Brotherhood Program will monitor that each Brotherhood student has an educational plan and that the student is making progress. As part of the counseling component students will submit midterm progress reports so that extra support is provided if needed.


Jamar Mears –

Kwesi Wilson –

Charles Washington –

Vanson Nguyen –

Luis Escobar –



Category: Brotherhood