Young Black college students inspire younger generation with new ULS program


BATON ROUGE, La (BRPROUD) Young Black men are inspiring their communities and schools with the Reginald F. Lewis Scholars Program.

University of Louisiana School Systems created the service program to increase the higher education experience for Black male students by providing educational programs and mentoring younger school children.

“As these young scholars were introduced to the @ulsystem community, their faces reflected a sense of pride, a sense of promise I won’t soon forget,” University of Louisiana Systems President Dr. Jim Henderson tweeted. “They have diverse backgrounds and interests, but share the purpose-driven mindset of the program’s namesake. Man, I love this work.”

The program hopes to uplift and encourage the younger generation for the upcoming school year, and boost morale overall.

The program officially began with a retreat on Wednesday, August 25. The students had lunch at the state Capitol and talked with the Legislative Black Caucus Chair Rep. Ted James and other members including Sen. Ed Price, Rep. Rodney Lyons, and Rep. Kyle Green.

The scholars visited Claiborne Elementary School where they read and interacted with students about college ambitions and achieving goals. 

The young men were also able to try on tailored suits at Jos A Bank.

The scholars are just beginning their three year journey. The final part of the retreat was introducing themselves in front of the  Board of Supervisors for the University of Louisiana System.

At the Board meeting, students learned that their meal plans will be covered for the year through generous support from food service partners Sodexo, Aramark and Chartwells. They also have tuition paid in full plus a meal plan scholarship.

“This is an incredible group who have already shown a significant amount of leadership, grit and personality,” Program Coordinator Claire Norris said. “Scholars: the message is clear. You have a strong support system that stands ready to walk with you through this journey.” 

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