By Bobby McDonald, contributing columnist
Over the past year, as millions of Americans saw the harsh treatment that continues to plague communities of color, as well as the resulting social unrest that followed, I knew I had to help. As president of The Orange County Black Chamber of Commerce and a proud Titan alum, I was able to partner with my alma mater to address some of these issues from both a campus and a community perspective.
As always, I am thankful for President Fram Virjee’s willingness to not only support the chamber but to engage in meaningful discussions and drive efforts on behalf of diversity, equity, and inclusion.
Likewise, I was honored to be able to work with Bobbie Porter, assistant vice president for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion and faculty members such as Dawn Pearson who oversees the Center for Research on Educational Access and Leadership at the university. Working with our CSUF partners, the Black Chamber was able to survey businesses, educational institutions, churches, and other organizations to create a comprehensive Racial Equity and Inclusion Framework for Orange County.
Our hope is that by gathering this information we can help to heal the divisions in our beloved Orange County community and support members of the Black community in attaining their goals.
As I expected from my Titan family, a vast array of CSUF alumni and veterans also helped with this project along with Lucy Dunn, president and CEO of the Orange County Business Council and The Diverse Business Leaders Coalition.
What I, as president of The Black Chamber, appreciate is that Cal State Fullerton is always at the forefront of community needs and serves as a significant contributor to our region.
In fact, the university has many intentional programs to address the needs of Black students. These include the Male Success Initiative, the African American Scholarship Program, the African American Resource Center, the Institute for Black Intellectual Innovation and many others. They not only provide support and assistance in helping students of color graduate but help them achieve future social mobility.
In honor of Black History Month, I’d like to salute the efforts of Cal State Fullerton on behalf of Black students and our Black community in Orange County.
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