Book Documents the Struggles and Triumphs of UVA's Pioneering Black Students

Posted: June 16, 2017, 12:00am

Dr. Maurice Apprey, dean of UVA’s Office of African-American Affairs since 2006, procured a grant from the Jefferson Trust and worked with alumna Shelli M. Poe, now an assistant professor of religious studies at Millsaps College, to edit the volume as part of a larger project on the achievements of black students at UVA. The book’s core includes first-person narratives from seven graduates who attended the schools of Law, Medicine, Engineering and Education, plus an interview with two local black women whose families provided a home away from home for many of these early students. Framing the personal stories are a preface by Apprey; a foreword from UVA President Teresa A. Sullivan; an introduction by English professor Deborah McDowell, who directs the Carter G. Woodson Institute of African-American and African Studies; and a historical overview of African-Americans at the University since its founding by library research archivist Ervin L. Jordan Jr. (READ MORE)

Source: UVA Today (Anne E. Bromley)

Class of 2017: Sisterhood Sees These First-Generation Students to Graduation

Posted: May 17, 2017, 12:00am

Shontell and Tonyette White, 22 and 26 respectively, will walk the Lawn Sunday as part of the Class of 2017. (Photo by Dan Addison, University Communications)Four years – and little else – separate these two sisters. This Sunday, Tonyette White will pass the baton to her younger sister, Shontell, when they both walk the Lawn as graduates of the University of Virginia. The elder sister is earning a Master of Education degree in counselor education from the Curry School of Education. Shontell will enter that program in August; for now, she is earning a B.A. in sociology from the College of Arts & Sciences and a B.S. in education, youth and social innovation from the Curry School. (READ MORE)

Source: UVA Today (Jane Kelly)

This A Capella Group Fuses English and Hindi Music, with Amazing Results

Posted: May 10, 2017, 12:00am

A capella group EktaalThe University of Virginia community loves a capella music. From the classiness of the Virginia Gentlemen to the robe-wearing Hullabahoos, all-vocal musical groups abound on Grounds and make student life more interesting with their own unique flair. Even in this diverse community, one group stands out from the rest. Founded in 1999, Ektaal is the University's only South Asian-American fusion a cappella group. (READ MORE)

Source: UVA Today (Abigail Lague)

Class of 2017: Daughter of Undocumented Immigrants Made UVA a Better Place

Posted: May 9, 2017, 12:00am

Erika Hernandez portraitKnowing what it’s like to be an outsider has always informed Erika Fernandez’s navigation. As the daughter of undocumented immigrants from Bolivia. As an out-of-stater, even in a place where she’d spent nearly her entire life. But nestling within the close orbit of her family – and having a nose-to-the-grindstone mentality, like her parents – has always kept her on course, she said, leading the now-24-year-old to success beyond even her own lofty ambitions. (READ MORE)

Source: UVA Today (Christine Phelan Kueter) In May, she will graduate from the University of Virginia School of Nursing and head for a job at the prestigious Mayo C


Class of 2017: Uskavitch Improved Student Experience for Black Men at UVA

Posted: May 5, 2017, 12:00am

Students playing in the snow – that’s what sold Nashville native Jacob Uskavitch on coming to the University of Virginia (and not his parents, who are both UVA alumni). A March snowstorm four years ago coincided with his visit for Days on the Lawn, an open house for prospective Wahoos offered admission. He saw students enjoying themselves outside as they trudged to and from classes, which were not cancelled, he said. Over the years, Uskavitch has excelled as an active, successful student, from serving as chair of the Black Presidents Council, a coalition of African-American student leaders, to mentoring young students at Clark Elementary School. He explored a variety of activities, especially those that emphasize a sense of belonging and paths to success for black male students on Grounds. (READ MORE)

Source: UVA Today (Anne E. Bromley)