Darrius Demps and Aminah Harris presented at the Association of Florida Colleges Regional Meeting Thursday, Nov. 12 as the Student Development Commission’s Exemplary Practice Award recipients. The presentation, titled “The Black Male Recruitment Conference,” is a recruitment initiative of My Brother’s Keeper’s (MBK).
In keeping with SF’s mission to enrich our communities through excellence in innovative programs, the Black Male Recruitment Conference (BMRC) is a half-day program that provides black male students and their parents with an exclusive opportunity to access important information about higher education, SF programs and services available to our students throughout the community, and the motivation to persist academically. BMRC hosts students in grades 7-11 from Alachua and Bradford counties with the belief that there is no better time than now to encourage students and parents to become engaged in college. It is our goal to inspire participants to work now, with the end in mind, by providing information that will aid them from grade school to college. BMRC is designed to increase black male student exposure to college, and SF, by presenting options early and collaborating goal plans. BMRC seeks to proactively retain as many black males in both secondary education and post-secondary education as possible.
SF has hosted the Black Male Recruitment Conference for three years with an average of 150 participants, about 40 percent being parents, which is key as we understand their role in preparation and student success. It is important to ensure parents and students are in a position where they are knowledgeable about their education and college expectations, and in a place to advocate for themselves. The conference also focuses on inspiring participants to build tools for success, focusing on motivation to pursue and persist and utilizes community member influence as an additional resource through the sharing of their stories and enlightenment of black history.