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Austin McCoy's blog

Rethinking Advocacy: Organizing and Racial Justice Work in Higher Education

Rethinking Advocacy: Organizing and Racial Justice Work in Higher Education

I am reminded of my first day of college when I think about Dr. Edward A. Bouchet’s experiences as the first African American person to earn a Ph.D. in the U.S., from Yale University, and the importance of advocacy when thinking about addressing racial disparities in enrollment and retention. I remember after my first day, one of my best friends (who was white) asked me, “Austin, how did it feel to be on a campus where you weren’t around your own, like in high school?” The question stunned me—partly because we did not always talk about race so explicitly, and partly because he recognized the few numbers of black students before I did.


The views expressed in this post are the author’s and do not necessarily reflect those of Rackham Graduate School or the University of Michigan.