Posts Tagged ‘College and Universities’


Yes, for over 25 years I have been a backer for the Wisconsin Badgers. The first time that I visited or seen a Bucky football game live in Madison at the beloved Camp Randall Stadium was 1993. And yes there was a time that I witnessed the members of the UW Band at the then Milwaukee Holiday Parade (excuse me, The Milwaukee CHRISTMAS Parade) that were marching down the street near Wisconsin Avenue. And yes there was a time that NOBODY was feeling Wisconsin until that resurrection came in the 1990’s before the route to win 3 Rose Bowls, and seeing the legends like Darrell Bevell, Terrell Fletcher, Jamar Fletcher, Brooks Bollinger, Ron Dayne, Chris Chambers, Russell Wilson, Montee Ball, James White, and even soon to be legends like Jack Coan, Jonathan Taylor, Qunitez Cephus and many others that want to stamp their Badger name for life! And for basketball I’ve seen Michael Finley play as well as Frank Kaminsky ball for Bucky. Yes, they were great legends and upcoming players that rocked the house.

But what I am about to post is not about them nor it’s about sports. It’s not about Camp Randall, or the Fieldhouse, or the Kohl Center or any other building or center at the UW-Madison Campus. It’s about this:

Press play above.

What you just seen was a video that was talked about and was further examined. This was the finished product of the UW-Madison Homecoming Video titled, “Home is where WI are.” WI is representing the student body of Wisconsin that attend currently. But in the video, it’s all white folks. No blacks, no Hispanics, no Asians, not even biracial or mixed folks. None of the Native American Students. NONE! When the tone of this product was finished, there were some black students that were apart of the early drafting of the footage, but part of it was cut out. And yet this set off an early firestorm of protests that the black students as well as other students of color were not pleased. Mainly FROM THE BLACK STUDENTS! For quite a while, you may have seen this hashtag online: #TheRealUW. This was just an awareness of the campus’ side that many never get to see. The lack of representation of black students, and some dealt with harassment, racism, intimation while being on campus. And many according to the stories that the black students endured while they stayed for their 4 years. #TheRealUW since then had received very alarming news in regarding the black student population that the University had ignored for many years. Even doctoring photos for a magazine cover to make a face look even less of a color that the true color. Many of us seen this cover like this:

https://www.snopes.com/fact-check/photo-finish-2/

This was a booklet cover of the UW Admissions for Undergraduate students from the 2001 – 2002 Semester. And this booklet cover has sparked an outrage among the folks that wanted to capture a black student in the crowd. It was more like being photoshopped. And we know what that happens to be make it more like the real deal. However, this was a bad PR stunt that the University now regrets.

Why do I talk about this? Mainly even though that UW-Madison is a fun college, but it does have it’s issues concerning with race. Most recently, UW-Madison Senior Payton Wade (who also presented the footage on her Twitter Page above) also weighed in her thoughts and reactions to the atmosphere of the video:

Courtesy of WKOW:

https://wkow.com/news/2019/09/30/uw-madison-removes-homecoming-video-from-social-media-after-backlash/?utm_medium=social&fbclid=IwAR345dTQDXvvLL_A6_RMOg-uBbMOulEv_D7nhzjbo5JTPr99k4X-smjAS0g

In the response to the Homecoming Video being pulled, this is what the Homecoming Committee had to say:

As the student Homecoming Committee, our goal to is to create events that are fun, create pride in our university and are welcoming and inclusive of the entire UW-Madison student body.

To promote student Homecoming, we recently produced a video called “Home is where Wi Are”, and we invited various student groups to participate in the video. Unfortunately, not all the video images produced were included in the final product, including those of students from under represented populations.We regret omitting those images and we recognized that, by doing so, we unintentionally caused hurt to members of our campus community.We are sorry that our video failed to show the full breadth of the university experience and made members of our community feel excluded. We appreciate being made aware of the impact of the video. We apologize to those students who participated in the video but were not included in the final product, as well as to anyone who was upset by the video.We are committed to doing better and working harder to make campus a welcoming and inclusive community.

And in response to this it came to a footage of this:

When I looked at the footage of the black students all centered around the Wisconsin symbol as well as the other minority students, this message should be sent TO ALL if the Universities in the State that have this disdain of black students that are unrepresented. Not seen not recognized. You are probably thinking, “this is supposed to be UW- Madison, the heart of the UW School System and a Big Ten College”. A party school folks wearing “Sconnie”. Oh we know. But many of who study this thing about Madison being racist on Campus, in this context is nothing new. Many of you White UW Students and Alumni probably have said about, “oh I went to Madison and never had a issue of a black students or is all imaginary being racist on campus”. Many of you are SILENT! And uninformed. And having your hands tied. And allowing this to happen all the time. I saw the African-American UW-Madison Alumni Facebook Page and for the former students voiced their disapproval of the then pulled homecoming video. And yet many if them wished they would have attended an HBCU, (that’s the Historical Black Colleges and Universities like Morehouse, Spellman or Howard). But many of them got into Madison based on Scholarships, Grants, and etc. Even though many of them had gone that route of education, however the sting of racism and not being felt at home at Madison was a different plateau.

Of course when the current black students get out of Madison, even this will concern Payton Wade, racial discrimination will be an effective mantra upon graduation into the real world and yet, this will not be a cake walk. Nope! The real world does not give care about your stats, your Fraternities, Sororities, your past college work and many other things you have gone through. And it should be commended and appreciative no matter where you go. Even if you’re black!

I want to be clear that EVERY College and University needs to hear the minority students. I want to see ALL Universities be very clear and concise to the point when discussing the needs and concerns and establishing a “home” on the majority PWI campues. Yes, UW-Madison is a PWI. My Alma Mater, UW-Stout is a PWI. And not only that, I’ve said this once and I’ll say it again, since UW-Madison has a African-American Alumni Association, why doesn’t all the campuses have these? Black Student Unions we know. But what about the Black Alumni Chapters that the Black Alums of these schools can have to reach to the current black student population? And vice versa? This is the problem. Now it seems that many will look at this and say “oh, its racist!” You don’t hear that on the Hispanic or Asian Groups stuff. Even they are Alumni. Of course, It’s Wisconsin. The population of black folks in the state are around the 6% – 8% while many of the folks whom are white are more that 80%. That is a fact. If Wisconsin would have had a black population more than 8% it would be a different story and many things would have been not been bad than good. That’s my take on this. But many have to ask, why does a school like this have a problem with the diversity side of minority students. Keep in mind! Quintez Cephus was expelled for one year out of UW all because of this sex scandal angle with some 18-19 year old white students that was later false! He won his case, got back into the school and got back on the team this year! Let that sink in! Oh please let that SINK IN! This is the same case that many black student athletes face most often. And usually the turnout does not look good. However on some points, it does turnout in a positive way to move forward.

So yes, listen to the minority students of color. Yep, On Wisconsin!


Almost forgot to do this, but this is for the Class of 2018. By now, you just completed your degrees, walked with your classes, heard the commencement speeches, and many of you totally admit that this was the last time you saw each other. This part is sad. But you have to stay in touch with your Alumni to keep up. For all of that, this is your blog letter.

Dear Class of 2018:

It’s me, Stephen. And you know who I am. First to the class of 2018, I say congratuations! You made it! Welcome to the club of the Alumni! Or for some of you, the Real World! I know the feeling of walking that stage and being admired of my educational accomplishments. But I have heard that you all had a tremendous year based on sports, academics and yes, getting to this point in your lives that will be remembered as long as you live.

Even though that this moment in your lives in your educational history is very sufficient, don’t be alarmed but many of you are probably influencing the next class or the next member in your families that is willing to go to that next level to be the best in your efforts. I’ve mentioned this before with a different class, but the reality is you established something that will be very influential. No matter if its your High School Diploma, Colleges Degrees of Associates, Bachelor’s, Masters, or Doctors, somebody is watching you and saying that “I’m going to do this!” My thing is: GO FOR IT! Do the thing that will get you famous with the pictures on the walls and comeback in 20 years to get another generation of graduates to hype them up for the next level.

But I want to take a moment to reflect on your Graduation Ceremonies. Many of you had great ceremonies in which you weren’t dancing. Some of you did. And some of you almost got yanked off the stage. Some of you High School Valedictorians that graduated wanted to say your speeches that included some concerns about Sexual Acts of Harassment and other acts of concerns you wanted to say, was cancelled by the administrations of pulling your microphones away. This crap of what you experienced was nothing of fear! The administrations of your schools were full of BS. They didn’t care. All they cared was like again: let’s talk about the good things, pomp and circumstance, speeches, congrats, walk on the stage, tilt your tassel and go home.

WAIT A SECOND! I written about this before years ago about top seniors in High School almost got yanked off the stage for the concerns about the violence, sexual harassment, and many other FEARS that many will talk about after leaving school. My thing is, you should be concerned! This happens almost EVERYDAY in the real world! You read about it online, read it in the papers, the news, and yes you hear it from other folks whom have their problems in the families in school! But alas: it’s graduation season. I need to tell these so-called Superintendents, Educators, Secretaries, Principals, Vice Principals, Dignitaries, and yes so-called supporters who favored the yanking of speeches: YOU ARE SO STUPID! You’re all about the one-sided affairs. But not about concerns! When I heard about the students making their speeches about the violence in Florida this year and many others across the country: where were you administration? Were you listening to the students?! If you were NOT LISTENING to the kids and those whom were Seniors, there is something wrong with you! This is our future! This is our next leaders to might be better than us in which they will be in control of the ship. And oh, you stripped their right to speak about the concerns. You all need to WAKE THE F//**+ UP! Yeah I said it! Many of you are worried about your wallets instead of your instincts! I thought the schools are a part of the community. When the community of Children and Youth are concerned about the world of Donald Trump insults, and the violence of innocent people being harassed, bullied or even traumatized about their classmates’ experience, WE THE SO-CALLED GROWN FOLKS need to LISTEN! They are our future! They are not just on Facebook or playing Fortnite! And as far as the University Commencements are concern. When the graduates in Florida were dancing around after hearing the names called, one of the folks put their hands on the graduates (black ones) and try to get them off the stage! REALLY?! I get it. Its a day full of joy. And yes the University had apologized to the graduates for the act. Lucky some of the HBCU’s (the Black Colleges) didn’t see that as a distraction or a problem!

Class of 2018: DON’T LET NOBODY STEAL YOUR JOY! If I had to come to a graduation and speak to most of you, I’m letting those words be the anchor. Not just for graduations or commencement services but everyday! You’re going to put up with folks whom don’t care about your academics, your sports, your family background, your heritage, your gender, your issues of whatever, religion, history, and etc. THEY WON’T CARE. It might seemed racist, sexist, shaming, in all. They will. Although they might acknowledge them, but many will not care about it! But I say this, be proud that you made it. Let the haters hate, sulk and suffer!

If they hate that you got a masters or a bachleors from a crappy school that they couldn’t pass, SORE LOSERS! Same thing with the High Schools. They couldn’t cut the mustard then. That’s why they complain. That’s why they go on the blogs (not this one) Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and others piss and moan about guys like you making it. And here is a shocker, some of them could be your former classmates, and I dare say: your church, your other friends, and even this might hurt, your kinfolk family members. It’s a well known fact of hate!

2018: Always continue to be the best in all what you do! Be real in all what you do! And don’t let NOBODY or anything stand your way towards that goaline. You have made it this far. Keep going to that next level! Oh, one more thing: since many of you got your degrees, and got all that grad money and I’ve mentioned this before. Get involved with your school’s Alumni Associations. Get involved with them. Attend a board meeting, receive newsletters, email blasts, view social media posts about your class or school. Tour the school for an open house, attend a homecoming game. Just to clarify that Homecoming is really for the Alumni! And for those whom are way younger than 41: I was told to do this at 18, and I’m telling you here: Go to your reunions. And also, donate back to your schools that gave you love in the first place! Now a days if you have not heard, Alumni Groups or Alumni in general now wants to give back to their schools. The schools want to reach out to the Alumni. GET INVOLVED!

Younger alums: I know that many of you will be busy with family and college. But the Alumni Committees needs to hear from you about what you want to see in your alum orgs. My advice, get to know your Alumni Committee. Get to know at least one member. Visit the schools, get the info that is current! Buy a T-shirt, form your own Alumni groups and events/reunions, and have the elder alumni to talk to you about why you should be a future Alumni Board Member. And like I said in many Graduation Blogs years ago, you might be on the stage in the future giving a keynote address to a future class that might be looking at you as an example while getting an Alumni of the Year Award. Which would echo your work in the community.

2018: You made it this far. Congrats to all of you. Like I said on the night of my father’s wake: Stay in the fight!

Sincerely,

Stephen