Liberation through Education!
The purpose of the Black University is to provide Black HBCU students in North Carolina with the resources needed to understand the role of college students in this current movement for black lives. The summit will provide students with a historical understanding of the impact college students have had in social movements, one of the major organizations that will be greatly uplifted is the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC). The leadership of black youth from SNCC led to the formation of various forms of black resistance as well as development. Leaders such as Black Political Scientist Charles Hamilton contributed to the fight to protect black lives. In his speech “What is the role of HBCUs in the struggle for Human Rights” he so eloquently defined a Black University as an institution that pushes away from white middle-class standards, an institution that allow students to think critically the solve problems in poor black communities, and an institution that offers courses in Black and African Studies. He was instrumental in demolishing the Jim Crow laws that plagued the United States, particularly in the South.
Black University was birthed by the leadership of black youth from Historically Black Colleges-Universities dedicated to having an equitable, accessible, oppression-free world. In North Carolina we are in a critical time period as the state inflicts regressive violence on HBCUs with Senate Bill 873 (Lawmakers trying to Bankrupt Historically Black North Carolina schools) and arginalized communities with House Bill (Understanding HB2). Youth across the state have been mobilizing across various identities and perspectives. Black University as an organization has developed an anti-capitalism position with the understanding that capitalism is responsible for the oppression of black and brown people globally. This space is necessary to understand the complexities of the power structures that control funding for institutions, mass criminalization of black people and interconnecting systems that contribute to the exploitation of everyone. Self-actualization thrives when spaces are intentionally made safe and anti-oppressive language becomes transmissible.