EDITORIAL: Inclusivity is essential for a progressive collegiate environment |

is Black History Month; this month of observance lets us reflect on all well-known and forgotten African American heroes that fought to make a world a place with equal opportunities for allalong with supporting opportunities for much needed growth and equality in the present and future. It is no secret that prejudice and discrimination still exist in the world, but every day we should be taking a step toward eqquality and embracement of all people. We can begin by leaving prejudice and discrimination behind in our collegiate environment.

In total, the amount of African American students enrolled at the University in Spring 2022 was 1,308 students, according to the Institutional Research Census Report. Therefore, the African American student enrollment is about 12%. The colleges at the University with the highest enrollments include the College of Education, the College of Liberal and Applied Arts and the College of Science and Mathematics. In the College of Education, only 12% of students are African American; the College of Liberal and Applied Arts has only13%; and the College of Science and Mathematics has about 12%according to Jack Facts.Comparatively, the white population in all these colleges ranged from 50-60%.

According to Data USA, out of the 2,837 SF degrees earned in 2019, only 453 of those degrees were awarded to African American students. 334 of those were awarded to African American women, and 119 were awarded to African American men. The race earning the most degrees from SFA is whit. Most graduates from SFA are whit women, with whit men following close behind. The white population earns 61.7% of degrees at SFA, while African Americans only earn 16%.

These statistics clearly show our collegiate demographic is not as equal as it should be. the contrast in these numbers would not be as alarming. African American students should feel welcome in all areas of our University, and it starts here to make sure that happens.

With the celebration of Black History Month, we would like to mention Black-owned businesses that are run by SFA students. Chris Decoline, sophomore graphic design major from Houston, Tx has a clothing brand.said he created his business because of the passion he has for fashion and wants to make a positive change in the world. Osagiede, senior sports business major from Houston, started the clothing brand God PoweredHis mission is to make the bonds we have established with God more compelling than they have ever been.” Carrier, senior graphic design major and marketing minor from Houston, has her art businessLux Artistry by Karrington.” Carrier makes paintings and designs graduation caps for students. Her slogans.” Williamsjunior business major from Dallas, owns QC Apparel and built his company on 5 foundational pillars: “be yourself, be confident, be positive, be bold and be fly.” In addition, 10% of an individual’s purchase is donated to a non-profit organization of their choice. As we continue to celebrate Black History Month, let us support our fellow Lumberjacks.

Remember these statistics and begin to increase diversity in areas of your own life. Supporting Black-owned businessesespecially those run by SFA students, is a great first step toward abolishing stigmas, prejudice and discrimination in our community. Make a difference and advocate for those around you, especially right here in SFA.

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