Will launch website and podcast in support of its mission of greater racial equity in higher education
(San Diego, CA) The #EquityAvengers, a dynamic duo of community college presidents, will continue to expand their efforts for a more equal and racially-diverse higher education landscape in 2022, while launching their much-anticipated website and podcast in 2022.
The #EquityAvengers began formalizing their brand and vision following their awarding of a grant from the College Futures Foundation, a California non-profit that aims to increase the number of people of color completing a bachelor’s degree. Prior to receiving the grant, they conducted grassroots advocacy and information sharing at conferences and via social media. Their efforts laid the groundwork for a more formal organization that has been taking shape.
The #EquityAvengers are Compton College President Dr. Keith Curry and San Diego Mesa College President Dr. Pamela Luster. They have become well-known for their advocacy for greater racial equity in higher education, particularly in their support of underrepresented students and improving achievement gaps. They have presented information on the national and state level and hold their weekly Wednesday #EquityChat on Twitter.
“We are honored to receive this investment from the College Futures Foundation to support what we’ve been doing in California and nationally to raise awareness and make changes in support of racial equity,” said Dr. Keith Curry, president of Compton College and a founding #EquityAvenger.
The grant has enabled Curry and Luster to hire 25th Hour Communications, a higher education marketing and public relations firm; Integrated Academic Solutions LLC (IAS), a strategic planning firm; and project manager, Carmel Malixi, to help them formalize their brand and what they plan to accomplish. With these additional resources and support, the duo will expand their operations and launch the
#EquityAvengers Community, which will give people a way to keep up-to-date with the group, attend workshops with in-depth topics, and become #EquityAvengers themselves. Specifically, the #EquityAvengers will be launching their website and podcast this year.
Jennifer Aries, president of 25th Hour Communications, said the company is honored to be a part of the # EquityAvengers’ critical mission.
“We believe in the transformative power of community colleges and the work that Dr. Luster and Dr. Curry do to promote student success for underrepresented students,” Aries said. “25th Hour Communications has jumped at every chance to support the #EquityAvengers in their shared vision for a more equitable world for higher education. We’re excited to help them promote their message to a national audience.”
#EquityAvengers have accomplished much since joining forces, including the creation of a grassroots movement within California higher education and paving the way for regular conversation about diversity, equity and inclusion in academia.
IAS Founder Diane White described herself as “a passionate supporter of California community colleges” and said they “empower all students to achieve their dreams and live into their full potential.”
“The closing of opportunity gaps, which have blocked low-income students and students of color from completing their education and career goals, will require the structural and transformational changes that #EquityAvengers plans to help deliver through its strategic plan,” she said. “I am excited and honored to be part of the team that will bring # EquityAvengers’ vision into fruition, which will ultimately help lead to the elimination of long-standing access and outcomes gaps.”
Luster said she and Curry aim to bring in people to the racial equity conversation, particularly those that have not felt comfortable talking about these topics to come and join the conversation.
“We came together over an issue of racial inequity and this actually was the beginning of our friendship,” Luster said. “We quickly realized that we could extend this conversation about equity more broadly across our networks and beyond. This discourse must continue across all spheres, but as the #EquityAvengers we can do our part to further it within academia.”