Bowie State University is on a mission to increase the representation of Black male teachers in Maryland classrooms. According to the Journal of Blacks in Higher Education, the HBCU is launching a center that will focus on empowering and supporting Black male teachers and students.
The new addition to the campus—which will be dubbed the Center for Research and Mentoring of Black Male Students and Teachers—is being funded through a grant provided by the University System of Maryland. The center will provide resources for Black men who are educators within Maryland’s school system. There will be forums, trips, and mentoring programs for participants. For its inaugural year, the center seeks to recruit up to 50 locally-based students to join the program. The center’s leadership team aims to engage teachers who will focus on STEM education.
The initiative is being led by associate professor Julius Davis. “It feels great to know that the University System of Maryland thought that it was worth the investment to create a center for research and mentoring of Black male students and teachers at a historically Black university,” Dr. Davis said in a statement, according to the news outlet. “I’m excited to start working with the young men. I do research, but I really want to impact what’s going on in the community, where the work matters most. I hope that it will create a national reputation for Bowie State to be a center for excellence for looking at black male students and black male teachers.”
News about the creation of the center comes at a time where teachers of color are underrepresented. According to Teach for America, only 2 percent of teachers in American public schools are Black men.