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OAAA E-Weekly Newsletter

The Office of African-American Affairs  Newsletter Highlighting Events and Opportunities for OAAA Students

"Young, Gifted & Black:

40 Years of Preparing Students for the Quest"

Special Announcement

OAAA PAA NOVA/DC/MD Chapter 2020 Scholarships
Application Deadline Extended: October 31, 2020

The UVA OAAA PAA NOVA/DC/MD Chapter is pleased to announce that the application period for its 2020 scholarships is now live. Unlike previous years, the scholarships are now available to all students (1st-years are eligible this year in addition to 2nd - 4th-year students). Please review the respective application and submit your response by October 31, 2020. Apply Now or for more information contact: Mark Kieffer


In order to reduce the risk of exceeding the max capacity, the Office has created an email for you to send print requests. Click here to get more details about printing.

Also, to maintain social distancing and safety guidelines while still supporting you, OAAA will only be able to host a very limited number of persons by appointment only. Students will be able to reserve study space for 60 minutes each day.  Click here to get more details and to make a reservation for study space.

Since we are all returning to Grounds, you may call our main number (434-924-7923), If you cannot reach us via phone please contact Mr. Smith ( or Ms. Comfort ( to assist you.

Let us continue to work together, staying focused and hopeful along the way and in ways that would enable us to do our best work in the midst of crises. We look forward to working with you this semester.


The Office of African-American Affairs



The University is closely monitoring key metrics and has developed a COVID-19 dashboard that will be shared and will track key metrics like the rate of infections and our operational readiness to respond to the virus. We stand ready to alter our operations and plans based on these metrics. We are grateful to all members of our community for their diligence in following the guidelines outlined below. A printable copy of the UVA COVID-19 Prevention, Detection, and Response Plan is available.




Plan Your Vote!
Mark your calendars. Everything you need to know about mail-in and early in-person voting, including the first day you can cast your ballot in the 2020 election. Click here.



FALL 2020

Tuesday, October 13
Last Day to Drop a Class

Tuesday, October 20
Last Day to Withdraw from a Class (via SIS)

Will remain in session
No Fall Break                                     

Family Weekend will be
cancelled for 2020


Monday, November 4 - Friday, December 13
Apply for May 2021 Graduation

Friday, November 13 
Last Day to Withdraw from the University and Return for Spring 2021

Tuesday, November 24   
Courses end
(No in-person instruction or assessments after November 24)

Wednesday, December 2 - Friday, December 11   
Examinations (administered on-line only)         

Monday, December 14 
Undergraduate Enrollment for Spring 2021

To Be Determined
Fall degrees conferred

Quote of the Week

"The only way you really see change is by helping to create it."  Lena Waithe

Rawan Osman

Spotlight on Student Achievements

Rawan Osman is a Third-Year Jefferson Scholar in the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences from Salisbury, MD. She is majoring in Electrical Engineering. Her current and past involvements at UVA include the Muslim Institute for Leadership and Empowerment, the UVA-Guatemala Initiative, Housing and Residence Life, Office of African-American Affairs Peer Advising, SEAS Bridge Program, and the TEDxUVA Speaker Series. Rawan aspires to work at the intersection of clean energy, environmental justice, and community development.

Quote's Corner

Lena Waithe was born on May 17, 1984. She is an actress, producer, and screenwriter who made history in 2017 by becoming the first Black woman to win an Emmy Award for Outstanding Writing for a Comedy Series. Lena Waithe was born in Chicago, Illinois, and raised on the city’s South Side. From an early age, Waithe knew she wanted to write for television, a dream supported by her single mother and grandmother. Waithe graduated from Evanston Township High School, and earned a degree in cinema and television arts from Columbia College Chicago.Named by “Variety” as one of its “10 Comedians to Watch” in 2014, Waithe had already begun to build her credentials as a writer on the Nickelodeon show, “How to Rock,” and as a producer of the film, “Dear White People.” She also wrote and appeared in the YouTube series “Twenties,” wrote and directed the short film “Save Me,” and wrote the “Hello Cupid” web series and the viral video, “Shit Black Girls Say.” Waithe’s big break came after she was cast in the Netflix series “Master of None,” which premiered in 2015. Her role of Denise was originally written as a straight, white woman, but the show’s creators changed the character to be more like Waithe. “I know how many women I see out in the world who are very much like myself. We exist. To me, the visibility of it was what was going to be so important and so exciting,” Waithe said. In 2017, Waithe and Aziz Ansari won the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Writing for a Comedy Series for the episode “Thanksgiving,” making Waithe the first Black woman to capture the award. The episode for which she won was partly based on her experiences coming out to her mother. During her acceptance speech, she thanked voters for “embracing a little Indian boy from South Carolina [Ansari] and a little queer Black girl from the South Side of Chicago.” That same year, “Out” magazine named Waithe the Out100: Artist of the Year, and “The Advocate” selected her as a finalist for its Person of the Year. On January 7, 2018, Waithe’s drama series, “The Chi,” premiered on Showtime. The series is based on Waithe’s experiences growing up on the South Side of Chicago.

Opportunites with Deadlines

The UVA Parents Fund has launched the Student Enrichment Fund, which provides grants to current undergraduate students who lack the resources to participate in professional development and academic enrichment experiences, such as studying abroad, taking J-Term classes, or pursuing internships. Read more about it here

This Week in Black History

 Did you know that?  Lewis Howard Latimer was an inventor and draftsman best known for his contributions to the patenting of the light bulb and the telephone. Lewis Latimer was born in Chelsea, Massachusetts, on September 4, 1848. Latimer was born to enslaved parents, George and Rebecca Latimer, in Virginia. George and Rebecca both had fled slavery before Lewis’s birth, but were recaptured and tried in Boston. Luckily, they were defended by Frederick Douglass and William Lloyd Garrison, both of whom were abolitionists. After the passing of the Dred Scott decision, George had left his family to the north for fear of a return to slavery. Lewis Latimer continued to help his mother at a young age and even enlisted into the navy at a young age in order to better assist his family. After an honorable discharge, Latimer picked up a job at a law firm. Latimer educated himself on mechanical drawings and soon found himself as a draftsman, or a person who draws details plans, after his talent was recognized. Here began Latimer’s career as an inventor as he made a number of inventions such as an improved bathroom railroad car and an early air conditioning unit. Latimer’s skills were so respected that he soon found himself working with Alexander Graham Bell on the telephone as well as Thomas Edison on the light bulb. Latimer was instrumental in the creation of the telephone through his design drawings that Bell was unable to do himself. Furthermore, Latimer was even more instrumental in the creation of the incandescent lightbulb. Latimer partnered with Edison in the creation of the light bulb, but it was Latimer who invented the first early designs for it that Edison would then build upon. In 1873, Lewis Latimer married Mary Wilson and had two daughters with her. Latimer died in 1928 in New York.

OAAA Announcements & Services

OAAA Virtual Office Hours

Monday with Dean Bassett
9:00 am – 10:30 am

Zoom Meeting - Passcode: 104941

Tuesday with Dean Bassett
11:30 am – 1:00 pm

Zoom Meeting - Passcode: 864290

Wednesday with Dean Thomas
11:30 am – 1:00 pm

Zoom Meeting - Passcode: 692599

Thursday with Dean Mason
11:30 – 1:00 pm

Zoom Meeting - Passcode: 605279

Friday with Mason/Thomas (Alternating)
9:30 am – 11:00 am

Zoom Meeting - Passcode: 474974


OAAA Tutoring for Fall 2020 –

OAAA Organic Chemistry Tutoring with Sarah Weisflog
Every Monday - 6:30 pm – 8:30 pm –  Zoom Room

OAAA Chemistry Tutoring with Yvette Gamor
Every Tuesday – 5:00 pm–7:00 pm – Zoom Room

OAAA Biology Tutoring with Jermaine Austin
Every Thursday – 3:00 pm–5:00 pm – Zoom Room

OAAA Calculus I and Statistics Tutoring with Travis Elliott 
Every Monday - 12:00 pm – 2:30 pm – Zoom Room

Every Thursday - 2:30 pm – 5:00 pm – Zoom Room

Contact: Dean Thomas for more information


Contact: Dean Mason for more information on:

  • Black College Women (BCW) Book Club
  • Black Male Initiative (BMI)
  • Black President’s Council (BPC)
  • Black College Women (BCW) - In the Company of my Sister

Upcoming Events

*ONLINE* Beinecke Scholarship Information Session
Monday, October 19 - 4:00 pm-5:00 pm - Zoom

The Beinecke Scholarship provides funding for master's and doctoral degrees in the arts, humanities, and social sciences, neuroscience excluded. Come even if you are not sure about graduate school at this time. Apply as a third year. Register here 

*ONLINE* Intro to Office and Q&A
26 October
- 4:00 pm-5:00 pm - Zoom

Haven't heard of the Office of Citizen Scholar Development? Don't know what fellowships are? Come listen to a brief introduction of the office followed by a time for Q&A. This session is helpful for students and alumni who have yet to interact with the Office of Citizen Scholar Development. Register here

*ONLINE* Yenching Academy Information Session
Monday, November 2 - 4:00 pm-5:00 pm - Zoom

The Yenching Academy of Peking University is a fully-funded residential program offering an array of interdisciplinary courses as part of a one-year master’s program in China Studies. Students from all fields are encouraged to apply and take advantage of one of six academic concentrations. Register here

*ONLINE* Boren Awards Information Session
Monday, November 9 - 4:00 pm-5:00 pm - Zoom

Interested in studying abroad? Learning a language crucial to US national security? Come learn about the Boren Awards, which fund the study of less commonly taught languages in world regions critical to U.S. interests, and underrepresented in study abroad, including Africa, Asia, Central and Eastern Europe, Eurasia, Latin America, and the Middle East. Come learn about the opportunity and the internal process for applying. Register here 

*ONLINE* Davis Projects for Peace Information Session
Monday, November 16 - 4:00 pm-5:00 pm - Zoom

The purpose of the Davis Projects for Peace is to spark initiatives for building prospects for peace in the world. Each year, the University of Virginia nominates one project and an alternate for the $10,000 prizes to actually complete the project. Come explore how your vision for peace could be funded by Davis. Register here:

The Office of Citizen Scholar Development
*ONLINE* Intro to Office and Q&A
Monday, November 23
- 4:00 pm-5:00 pm - Zoom

Haven't heard of the Office of Citizen Scholar Development? Don't know what fellowships are? Come listen to a brief introduction of the office followed by a time for Q&A. This session is helpful for students and alumni who have yet to interact with the Office of Citizen Scholar Development. Register here

*ONLINE* UK Fellows Information Session
Monday, November 30
- 4:00 pm-5:00 pm - Zoom

The United Kingdom Fellows Program allows graduating University of Virginia students the opportunity to teach and live abroad in a boarding school in the UK for the year following graduation. Come learn about the different schools with which we have a relationship and how to apply. Students in all fields welcome! Register here

Around the Charlottesville Area Community
Charlottesville Community Cares – Emergency Funding for Households
Apply Mondays thru Fridays between 9:00 am-5:00 pm by calling (434) 234-4490

If you are having economic hardship due to the COVID-19 virus, and live in the City of Charlottesville or Albemarle, Buckingham, Fluvanna, Greene, Louisa, Nelson, or Orange Counties, call today. Multiple languages are available. Thanks to the Charlottesville Area Community Foundation, Cville Community Cares, United Way of Greater Charlottesville, City of Charlottesville, and the County of Albemarle for sponsoring this effort to support our community!

Filing for Unemployment [Video] – Virginia Employment Commission
Visit for help to file in the Commonwealth of Virginia.

“In My Humble Opinion”– 101.3 Jamz -- Charlottesville’s Own Talk/Radio
Every Sunday 12 noon – 3:00 pm

Hosted by Charles Lewis, Max, and Razor, along with special guests. Listen online at, or download the free TuneIn app for iPhone and Android to get the latest local news in Charlottesville’s Black community.