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Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Conspiracy Theory or Truth? One Reason Why UF's Black Recruitment Efforts are Not Made a Priority


I've been following Jeff Schweers' Gainesville Sun series on declining Black enrollment at UF. I wrote my initial blog post about it here. The post included how attending UF changed my life forever and 3 things we can do TODAY to help maintain a strong legacy of Black and Afro-Latino achievement and excellence at UF and throughout the Gator Nation.

Additionally, I have been speaking with a few former student leaders and ABA members about their perspective on the situation and how alumni might support increased recruitment and retention efforts.

A friend mentioned that one possible reason for the somewhat lack of interest in stepping up recruitment efforts might be because Black alumni are presumed to not give back financially, in a large way, thus less of a priority. This had been a topic of discussion several years ago while this friend was attending UF's Levin College of Law.

Coincidentally, on March 7, Jeff published another article about Gale V. King's $1M donation UF's College of Journalism and Communications. The fund is expected to generate about $35,000 to $40,000 a year that will go directly to scholarships and programs, according to Diane McFarlin, dean of the journalism school.

Gale V. King is the executive vice president and chief administrative officer for Nationwide Mutual Insurance in Columbus, Ohio, grew up in Gainesville and went on to great corporate success.

Does Gale's donation negate the conspiracy theory (or truth) that Black alumni do not give back in a large way, thus are less of a priority? How could we use this narrative to reiterate to the new administration how important, and mutually beneficial, Black student recruitment efforts are to the Gator Nation?

READ THE FIRST POST IN THIS SERIES: URGENT: Get involved w/ your University of Florida - Alumni Association NOW - Here's why.

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