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Graduate, Attend College!’
Is Message School Supplies, Backpacks Delivered Along With Advice

Members of the Black Male Fellows of the University of Central Oklahoma made a visit to Douglass High School the other day in an effort to “show by example” that graduation and attending college are important.

The UCO men wanted to encourage high school young “men” at Douglass High to make as part of their “horizons for the future” a goal of graduating from high school and going on to advance their careers by completing college, too.

“Statistically speaking, only 17 percent of Black young men graduate from high school,” Cameron Buckner, a UCO junior from Oklahoma City, said. Mr. Buckner is majoring in community and public health.

“What’s even more tragic is that, of that paltry 17 percent, just 20 to 25 percent of that those who graduate from high school actually attend college,” Mr. Buckner went on. The Black Male Fellows program at UCO “is working to “help students see themselves in a different light,” Rezahn Clayton, another Black Male Fellows member, said. Mr. Clayton is a senior international business administration major from Ft. Worth, Texas.

The “100 for 100 School Drive,” which brought the UCO students to the northeast Oklahoma City high school campus, resulted in one-on-one (or “man-to-‘man’ ”) sessions with the teenagers. “Of course, we understand that most inner-city kids face social and cultural issues outside school,” one additional member of the group, Antonio Harris, stated.

Mr. Harris is a sophomore from Lawton majoring in kinesiology and exercise science.

“But we wanted to bring relevant experiences to them—with ourselves as examples—that show that those obstacles can be overcome,” Jamal Pride, a Lawton senior majoring in criminal justice and forensic science, remarked.

“We want them to see that there’s a bigger world out there beyond Oklahoma City,” Brian Williams, also a UCO Black Male Fellows member, pointed out.

“We want them to dream beyond their current reality….We want them to dream big!”

Mr. Williams is majoring in kinesiology and exercise fitness, and is from Midwest City.

The UCO students dispensed 100 backpacks filled with school supplies and information on their Edmond-located school.

One-hundred Douglass High students (of all high school and middle school ages) were the recipients, and also received free haircuts dispensed by area barbers.