Top education executives cautioned against apathy when it comes to the livelihood of black institutions as the Trump administration takes the reins.
Michael Lomax, president and CEO of the United Negro College Fund, told attendees at the annual UNCF Mayor’s Masked Ball on Saturday, Jan. 28 held at the Hyatt Regency Washington on Capitol Hill in Northwest that it’s a “critical time in our country.”
“Us supporting education ensures that our young people can finish school and be able to give back,” Lomax said. “We are going to make the case to Congress and the president of the United States that investing in education is good for all Americans. We are going to be rigorous and make our case.
“Mayors matter, city councils matter, boards of education matter, local and federal governments matter,” he said.
Lomax said that education has and will always be the key for upward mobility and ending the cycle of poverty for many African-American students.
“We must as a nation be committed to the cause of ending the cycle,” he said. “We can change the trajectory for young people and make sure our nation remains the strongest democracy in the world.”
D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser said that she worked hard to accelerate the success of the city’s schools by investing in the programs and initiatives that are working.
“One of the first things I did as mayor was launch the Empowering Males of Color Initiative in D.C.,” she said. “Our goal is to prepare all students for success in college, careers and life, and this initiative addresses the specific needs of our boys and young men of color.”
The fundraiser also honored Jack and Jill of America Foundation and the National Museum of American History and Culture for their contributions to UNCF’s mission.
“This month, our nation’s highest office changed hands, but our work and mission carry on as they have for 73 years,” the organization said.