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Group examining black concerns in higher ed will meet Dec. 5 inside Holmes Student Center

December 2, 2011
NIU Black Choir

NIU Black Choir

Members of the Illinois Committee on Black Concerns in Higher Education (ICBCHE), in collaboration with the Office of Precollegiate Programs and the NIU Black Faculty Association, will hold a town hall meeting Monday, Dec. 5, at NIU.

The group will develop strategies for assuring black access and equity in Illinois education.

Two years ago, the Illinois Board of Higher Education issued its Public Agenda for College and Career Success, a document that is to guide higher education policy for the next several years.

Among other things, it points out that black and Latino students now make up nearly half of the students in elementary and high school who will (or, rather, should) eventually matriculate to colleges and universities.

Yet the number of minority students, and specifically black students, on college campuses is not increasing at a commensurate rate. In many cases, the numbers are decreasing.

Similarly, IBHE reports indicate that the number of black faculty and staff on Illinois college and university campuses in on the decline as well.

Felicia R. Bohanon

Felicia R. Bohanon

Since 1982, ICBCHE has been a champion and an outspoken advocate for the increased presence and prominence of black students, faculty and staff on college and university campuses across Illinois.

Recognizing that real change in education, and specifically in educational access, happens at all points in the educational pipeline cannot and will not happen if they concentrate their efforts strictly on college campuses, ICBCHE has brought together higher education professionals, students, representatives from K-12 and the community.

To date, ICBCHE has held meetings across the state at Prairie State College, the Chicago Urban League and Southern Illinois University-Carbondale. Its fourth meeting at NIU is scheduled from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the Clara Sperling Sky Room.

Strategies developed at the NIU town hall meeting, along with those from the previous meetings will used in the development of an Education Agenda for Blacks in Illinois, which will be presented at ICBCHE’s annual conference in Springfield in March 2012.

For more information concerning the meeting, contact Felicia R.Bohanon, ICBCHE 2012 Conference chair, at [email protected] or (815) 753-6953.