For our last week of responses, we’re thinking beyond the short stories.
We’re not where we were last year this time when all classes were remote and the pandemic was even more prevalent, but we’re still not back to pre-COVID so-called normality.
Over the last couple of years, researchers and commentators have noted the toll that the pandemic has had on African Americans and other people of color in terms of health, in the workforce, in neighborhoods and homes, and in schools.
As we emerge from and continue to deal with a pandemic, what do you now think is one of the most important challenges to consider and discuss at SIUE concerning black students like you? Briefly explain in two or three sentences.Examples:
• “The biggest challenge is putting figuring out how to put black students in touch with each other. The pandemic diminished crucial peer-to-peer networks, which were crucial for overall educational and social development. Addressing those kinds of issues will be vital if we expect black students to thrive here at the university and moving forward.” --J. D.
• Motivation. Over the last two years, so many black students like me loss motivation to do well and excel. If we expect to get to a better place, we’ll certainly have to figure out how to inspire folks to become more excited about educational and professional pursuits.” –M. S.
• The pandemic made it even clearer how vulnerable African Americans were in a world with systemic racial injustice. We should use all we learned about disproportionate health factors as well as the protests concerning social justice to address really address racist barriers at university.” P. F.