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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

Reduction of University services during upcoming breaks. We recognize a small number of students will need to remain in on-Grounds housing or in the area over the extended break due to unusual circumstances. Many services will be curtailed after the Thanksgiving Break, with a further reduction in services occurring after exams end on Dec. 11. Some offices, such as Student Health and Wellness, will remain available to students whether they are here or at home, but they will observe the Thanksgiving Break as well as the University's Winter Break from Dec. 19-Jan. 3.


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.

If you have any questions please call our main number (434-924-7923), If you cannot reach us via phone please contact Mr. Smith ( or Ms. Comfort ( to assist you.



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.


Nov. 30-Dec. 1: Reading Days
Dec. 2-11: Exams
Dec. 6 and 9: Reading Days
December (various dates): Spring course registration
Dec. 12, noon: First-year residence halls close
Dec. 12: Winter Break begins for students
Dec. 19-Jan. 3: University academic offices closed
Jan. 4-15: January Term (virtual)
Jan. 14: Spring 2021 term notification of charges
Jan. 16-31: Winter Break continues for students
Late January (various dates TBD): First-year residence
halls reopen
Feb. 1: Spring courses begin
Feb. 12: Spring 2021 term charges due 
Feb. 17: No classes
March 9 and 29: No classes
March 15: Decision about graduation observances
April 15: No classes
May 6: Spring courses end
May 7-15: Exams
May 9 and 12: Reading Days
May 21-23: Class of 2021 Finals Weekend (tentative)
May 28-30: Class of 2020 Finals Weekend (tentative)

Quote of the Week

“We know how important it is that we elect real servant leaders, leaders like Joe Biden and Kamala Harris—people of honor and integrity, who hold justice close to their hearts and believe that the lives of my four Black children matter. In the words of womanist poet Audre Lorde, “Your silence will not protect you.” – Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms, Atlanta, GA

Quote's Corner


Keisha Lance Bottoms is the 60th Mayor of Atlanta. A daughter of Atlanta, Mayor Bottoms is committed to realizing her vision of One Atlanta – an affordable, resilient and equitable Atlanta – which stands as a model city for both commerce and compassion.

A lifelong public servant, Mayor Bottoms is the only Mayor in Atlanta’s history to have served in all three branches of government, serving as a judge and City Councilmember before being sworn in as Mayor.

Leading with a progressive agenda focused on equity and affordable housing, Mayor Bottoms serves as Chair of the Community Development and Housing Committee and the Census Task Force for the United States Conference of Mayors.

Georgia Trend magazine named Mayor Bottoms the 2020 Georgian of the Year. Among Mayor Bottoms’ notable accomplishments to date include the establishment of the City’s first fully-staffed Office of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion, the appointments of a LGBTQ Affairs Coordinator and a Human Trafficking Fellow, the citywide elimination of cash bail bond, the closure of the Atlanta City Detention Center to ICE detainees, and the rollout of the most far-reaching financial transparency platform in the City’s history – Atlanta’s Open Checkbook.

Under Mayor Bottoms’ leadership, the City of Atlanta led the historically successful staging of Super Bowl LIII, which included unprecedented community benefits – a $2.4 million renovation of John F. Kennedy Park on Atlanta’s Westside, more than 20,000 trees planted throughout the community and the seamless coordination of 40 federal, state and local public safety agencies.

A product of Atlanta Public Schools, Mayor Bottoms graduated from Frederick Douglass High School and received her undergraduate degree from Florida A&M University. She earned her Juris Doctorate from Georgia State University College of Law.

An active member of the community, Mayor Bottoms is a member of the State Bar of Georgia, Jack and Jill of America, The Links, Incorporated, and Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Incorporated. She has also served on the board of Families First and shares her personal story of adoption and advocates on behalf of adoption and foster care.

Mayor Bottoms is the daughter of Sylvia Robinson and R&B icon Major Lance. She resides in historic Southwest Atlanta with her husband, Derek W. Bottoms, their four children- Lance, Langston, Lennox and Lincoln, and their family dog, Logan.

Opportunites with Deadlines

The Cooke Undergraduate Transfer Scholarship is a highly selective scholarship for the nation’s top community college students seeking to complete their bachelor’s degrees at four-year colleges or universities. Each Cooke Scholar has access to generous financial support for two to three years, college planning support, ongoing advising, and the opportunity to connect with the thriving community of fellow scholars.

Each award is intended to cover a significant share of the student’s educational expenses – including tuition, living expenses, books and required fees – for the final two to three years necessary to achieve a bachelor’s degree. Awards vary by individual, based on the cost of tuition as well as other grants or scholarships they may receive. This highly competitive scholarship includes:

Up to $40,000 per year to attend a four-year accredited undergraduate school.
Ability to pursue any area of study.
Personal advising about selecting a college and navigating financial aid.
Multifaceted advising about how to transition to a four-year college and maximize the student experience.

The application closes on January 6, 2021 at 11:59 pm in your local time zone.

More information:


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?  Mary Jane McLeod Bethune (born Mary Jane McLeod; July 10, 1875 – May 18, 1955 was an American educator, stateswoman, philanthropist, humanitarian, womanist and civil rights activist. Bethune founded the National Council for Negro Women in 1935. The National Council of Negro Women (NCNW) is a non-profit organization with the mission to advance the opportunities and the quality of life for African American women, their families, and communities. Mary McLeod Bethune wanted to encourage the participation of Negro Women in civic, political, economic and educational activities and institutions. The organization was considered as a cleaning house for the dissemination of activities concerning women but wanted to work alongside a group who supported civil rights rather than go to actual protests. Women on the council fought more towards political and economic successes of black women to uplift them in society. NCNW fulfills this mission through research, advocacy, national and community-based services and programs in the United States and Africa. NCNW serves as a super organization which acts as a cohesive umbrella for the other African American groups that already existed. With its 28 national affiliate organizations and its more than 200 community-based sections, NCNW has an outreach to nearly four million women, all contributing to the peaceful solutions to the problems of human welfare and rights. The national headquarters that act as a central source for program planning, is based in Washington, D.C., on Pennsylvania Avenue, located between the White House and the U.S. Capitol. NCNW also has two field offices.

She also was appointed as a national adviser to president Franklin D. Roosevelt, whom she worked with to create the Federal Council on Negro Affairs, also known as the Black Cabinet. She is well known for starting a private school for African-American students in Daytona Beach, Florida; it later continued to develop as Bethune-Cookman University. Bethune was the sole African American woman officially a part of the US delegation that created the United Nations charter, and she held a leadership position for the Women's Army Auxiliary Corps. For her lifetime of activism, she was deemed "acknowledged First Lady of Negro America" by Ebony magazine in July 1949 and was known by the Black Press as the "Female Booker T. Washington". She was known as "The First Lady of The Struggle" because of her commitment to gain better lives for African Americans.

On May 18, 1955, Bethune died of a heart attack. Her death was followed by editorial tributes in African-American newspapers across the United States. The Oklahoma City Black Dispatch stated she was, "Exhibit No. 1 for all who have faith in America and the democratic process." The Atlanta Daily World said her life was, "One of the most dramatic careers ever enacted at any time upon the stage of human activity." And the Pittsburgh Courier wrote, "In any race or nation she would have been an outstanding personality and made a noteworthy contribution because her chief attribute was her indomitable soul."

The mainstream press praised her as well. Christian Century suggested, "the story of her life should be taught to every school child for generations to come." The New York Times noted she was, "one of the most potent factors in the growth of interracial goodwill in America." The Washington Post said: "So great were her dynamism and force that it was almost impossible to resist her ... Not only her own people, but all America has been enriched and ennobled by her courageous, ebullient spirit." Her hometown newspaper, the Daytona Beach Evening News printed, "To some, she seemed unreal, something that could not be. ... What right had she to greatness? ... The lesson of Mrs. Bethune's life is that genius knows no racial barriers."

The Dorothy I. Height Building, headquarters of the National Council of Negro Women, located at 633 Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington, D.C.

OAAA Announcements & Services

OAAA Announcements & Services – Fall 2020

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

Any questions please contact our office 434-924-7923


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* 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

 “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.

Around the Charlottesville Area Community -Seasonal Fun - Holidays 

December 2, Wednesday
The Paramount Theater.
Will Ferrell stars as the ultimate fish out of water, Buddy, who as a baby crawls into Santa's toy bag and is whisked off to the North Pole, where he is raised as an elf. The Paramount Theater.  3 & 7pm.  $5 youth (ages 12 and under), $8 adult.  All ages welcome.  Email: For details, please click this link.  For more info call: 434-979-1333. 

December 3, Thursday
BRHBA, Craig Builders & Sherwin Williams Paints.
Enjoy BRHBA's first virtual Holiday Party & Raffle. Donate to Toy Lift Charlottesville, and you will be eligible to win some awesome prizes. Online - Blue Ridge Home Builders Association.  6pm.  For details, please click this link. 

December 3, Thursday
Enjoy a luminous soundscape played by the audience on mobile devices & bluetooth speakers as participants walk through the streets of Charlottesville's downtown. IX Art Park.  7-8pm.  For details, please click this link. 

December 4, Friday
The Paramount Theater.
Christmas Vacation follows Clark Griswold (Chevy Chase), a well-meaning man who can never seem to catch a break. As the Griswold's prepare for a family Christmas celebration, Clarks continual bad luck is worsened by his obnoxious family guests, but he manages to keep going knowing that his Christmas bonus is due soon. The Paramount Theater.  3 & 8pm.  For details, please click this link.

December 4-5, Friday & Saturday
Piedmont Virginia Community College.
PVCC's annual Let There Be Light celebrates the approach of winter solstice and the longest night of the year with light-based art installations and performances created by a selection of some of the most imaginative local and regional artists. Due to COVID-19, Let There Be Light will not be held on the PVCC campus this year. Art installations and performances will be in multiple locations throughout Charlottesville for two nights instead on the usual "one night only." 6-9pm.  $Free.  All ages welcome.  Email: For details, please click this link.  For more info call: 434-961-5362. 

December 5, Saturday
Barracks Road Shopping Center.
The Christmas Market will feature a center-wide outdoor sidewalk sale with holiday promotions from various merchants. The day will also feature a Christmas tree sale and food drive to benefit Loaves & Fishes Food Pantry and live music. Barracks Road Shopping Center.  For details, please click this link.

December 8, Tuesday
Virginia Discovery Museum.
Deck the halls with handmade holiday decorations, or spread some cheer with a special gift for family and friends. Craft a jolly pine cone gnome, create a colorful paint-poured ornament, build a sparkling snowperson sensory bottle, and construct a snow-free "snowball" launcher perfect for some seasonal STEM exploration and warm indoor play. Online - Virginia Discovery Museum.  3-4pm.  Reservations are required.  For details, please click this link.


December 17-20, Thursday-Sunday
Live Arts.
A totally original and completely zany twist on A Christmas Carol. The 2020 holiday play has replaced MARAT/SADE and the holiday special for December programming at Live Arts. Live Arts.  $20/household.  For details, please click this link.  For more info call: 434-977-4177. 

December 13-15, December 20-22, December 26-31
Wintergreen Resort.
This holiday season join the stars of The Sound of Music as they reunite for an intimate cabaret of epic proportions as Brian Clowdus presents: A Very Von Trapp Family Christmas. Get to know the actors and their own stories as the curtain is pulled back on the sold-out mega hit in this heartwarming tribute to all our favorite things that truly make this the most wonderful time of the year. Wintergreen Resort.  Varies.  $50 and up.  Reservations are required.  For details, please click this link.  For more info call: 434-325-2200.