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“Minneapolis Public Schools has the widest achievement gap between Whites and Blacks in the United States. Minnesota also has one of the lowest successful graduation rates for Black men in college. SAAB/B2B presents an model that can change the numbers in favor of educating Black Men to Success! Education is a Civil Right – are you ready to move to the front of the bus?”
Fast Tube by Casper
by Donald W.R. Allen, II – Editor in Chief/IBNN NEWS and Black Politics in Minneapolis
Minneapolis, MN (IBNN NEWS/Education/February 6. 2012)…On Saturday, February 4, 2012 Dr. Tyrone Bledsoe was the keynote speaker at Minneapolis Community and Technical College for their Student African American Brotherhood/Brother2Brother Kick-Off program and dinner. Dr. Bledsoe is the founder of SAAB/B2B headquartered at the University of Toledo.
Student African American Brotherhood (SAAB) is a dynamic organization established specifically to assist our participants to excel academically, socially, culturally, professionally, and in the community. SAAB is primarily comprised of male students who strive for academic excellence and make a commitment to plan and implement programs that benefit their community at large. We encourage our participants to embrace leadership by being positive examples for each other through a strong commitment to academic achievement, brotherhood, and community service. We provide weekly study sessions, weekly developmental seminars for students of all ages, business meetings, social and religious activities, and work with various non-profit service agencies (i.e., Habitat for Humanity, Big Brothers and Big Sisters, Boys Club, etc.).
The Student African American Brotherhood (SAAB) focuses on increasing the number of African American and Latino men that graduate from college by creating a positive peer community based on a spirit of caring. SAAB operates through student run chapters with professional advising and mentorship to assist young men to excel academically, socially, culturally, spiritually and in the community.
Dr. Jesse Mason runs the Minneapolis SAAB Chapter at MCTC. It is the first of its kind in Minnesota.
Research shows that Black males are becoming extinct as it pertains to higher education. In the Minneapolis Public School system, reports show the widest “educational gap” or commonly called the Achievement Gap between White and Black students in the United States. This lack of educational mentoring make students of color, especially Black males unprepared for college and usually within the first semester drop out. MCTC has seen first hand the drop in enrollments (17% Fall 2011) and culture that needs to be changed. That’s SAAB/B2B’s mission – to change the culture to success.
Saturday night’s dinner was a historical event not only for the college, but also for Black Minnesotans. Finally, a “true model of success” has “again” been laid in front us graced with the “process” to successfully engage students of color from K-12 into college that has a proven track record. The community, public and college administrators, politicians and charitable foundations must support this initiative across Minnesota to shift the pendulum in Minnesota’s educational drought.