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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 Trivia Tuesdays Question/Answer/Winners for Tuesday, October 27

Who said: “The colour of the skin is in no way connected with strength of the mind or intellectual powers.”

Benjamin Banneker

Winners for Tuesday, October 27
Kanijah Brickhouse
Khady Diop
Ar’Monii Price

“Swipe or No Swipe: Trivia Tuesdays" 

At this point in the semester many of you are either low on or completely out of meal swipes. With this in mind, OAAA is providing our students a new and fun way to win a gift card. We introduce to you “Swipe or No Swipe: Trivia Tuesdays.” Make sure to pay attention to your emails because on Tuesdays we will be sending out trivia questions. Good luck and have fun! 


The Office of African-American Affairs (OAAA) is on FACEBOOK!
LIKE US to keep up-to-date with events and more info about OAAA!




Fall 2021 Academic Calendar

November 24 - November 28:      Thanksgiving recess

December 7:                                  Courses end

December 8:                                  Reading Day

December 9 - December 17:       Examinations (Go to Exam Schedule)

December 12 - December 15:     Reading Days

December 17:                              Fall degrees conferred (no ceremony)

Quote of the Week

 “Death is not the greatest loss in life. The greatest loss is what dies inside while still alive. Never surrender.” – Tupac Shakur

Shannon Britt

Spotlight on Student Achievements

Shannon Britt

Shannon is a fourth year from Caroline County, Virginia which is outside of Richmond. She is a Sociology major and American Sign Language minor in the College of Arts and Sciences. Shannon is a member of  OneWay Intervarsity, Black Voices, Madison House (non-profit volunteer organization on grounds), the OAAA Peer Advisor Program - a peer advisor and co-chair of the selections committee, and a UVA employee - a student research intern for the President’s Commission on the University in the Age of Segregation. Shannon’s future plans includes furthering her education after graduating from UVA in pursuit of a master’s degree in mental health counseling.  She would also like to explore careers in the legal field while keeping law school in mind.

Quote's Corner

Tupac Amaru Shakur (born Lesane Parish Crooks) (June 16, 1971 – September 13, 1996), better known by his stage name 2Pac and, later, by his alias Makaveli, was an American rapper and actor. He is widely considered one of the most influential rappers of all time. Much of Shakur's music has been noted for addressing contemporary social issues that plagued inner cities, and he is considered a symbol of activism against inequality. Shakur was born in Manhattan, New York City, but relocated to Baltimore, Maryland in 1984 and then the San Francisco Bay Area in 1988. He moved to Los Angeles in 1993 to further pursue his music career. By the time he released his debut album 2Pacalypse Now in 1991, he had become a central figure in West Coast hip hop, introducing social issues to the genre at a time when gangsta rap was dominant in the mainstream.  Shakur achieved further critical and commercial success with his follow-up albums Strictly 4 My N.I.G.G.A.Z... (1993) and Me Against the World (1995). His double-disc album All Eyez on Me (1996), abandoning introspective lyrics for volatile gangsta rap, was certified Diamond by the RIAA. On September 7, 1996, Shakur was shot four times by an unknown assailant in a drive-by shooting in Las Vegas, Nevada; he died six days later and the gunman was never captured. Shakur's friend-turned-rival, the Notorious B.I.G., was at first considered a suspect due to the pair's public feud, but was also murdered in another drive-by shooting six months later in March 1997 while visiting Los Angeles, California.  Shakur is one of the best-selling music artists of all time, having sold over 75 million records worldwide. In 2002, he was inducted into the Hip-Hop Hall of Fame. In 2017, he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in his first year of eligibility. Rolling Stone named Shakur in its list of the 100 Greatest Artists of All Time. Outside of music, Shakur had success as an actor, with his starring roles as Bishop in Juice (1992), Lucky in Poetic Justice (1993), Ezekiel in Gridlock'd (1997), and Jake in Gang Related (1997), all of which garnered praise from critics.

Opportunites with Deadlines

Special Opportunity for 4th Years

Application Deadline:  Friday, November 5, 2021

J-Term Course for 12 students - a two-week series of conversations in Washington, D.C. with national leaders about President Biden’s First Year in office. More info and link to application. All housing and meal costs will be provided.  Students will be responsible for their own travel to and from DC, though financial support could be available for students with need. The course will consist of two or three conversations per day.  Each student will be responsible for leading at least one of these conversations, and also participating in all of the conversations.  Each conversation will require preparatory reading materials about the office-holder, the relevant government institution, the issues at hand, and the particular challenges of managing a presidential first year.  The officials will be offered the option of having these conversations either as off-the-record or as recorded for either podcast or video-re-broadcast.  

Associate Community Organizer

Positions begins: Monday, January 10, Monday, May 9, and Monday, August 8, 2022

Starting salary $40,500/year + benefits. Positions open in: Florida: Fort Lauderdale, Fort Myers, Jacksonville, Manatee County, Miami, Sarasota, St. Petersburg, Tampa; Kansas: Lawrence, Wyandotte County, Johnson County; Kentucky: Lexington; South Carolina: Charleston, Columbia; Virginia: Charlottesville, Richmond; Lead Community Organizer / Executive Director positions begin Fall 2021 in: Florida: Brevard County, Sarasota; Kansas: Wyandotte County. DART organizations are diverse coalitions that include communities of color, low-to-moderate-income communities and immigrant communities. We strongly encourage people from these backgrounds, as well as fluent Spanish speakers and DACA recipients, to apply. To apply or learn more about DART, visit or find us on Instagram and Facebook @theDARTcenter. Still have questions? Contact Moe or (602) 510-4658.

Ridley Scholarship Fund Awards Available to Non-Ridley Students Available

Ridley scholarships that extend beyond current scholars:

Ravenell “Ricky” Keller III Memorial Fund

Deadline for Spring 2022: Monday, November 15, 2021

The Ravenell (Ricky) Keller III Scholarship Award was established to perpetuate the memory of Ravenell “Ricky” Keller. Ricky was a 1985 Honors graduate of the College, where he was a member of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc., the IMP Society of Leaders, the University Guide Service and the Board of Trustees for the Class of 1985. Upon his passing, it became known that he was also a member of the Seven Society. Ricky participated in the First Years Seminars program and received the First Year Academic Achievement Award, the Afro-American Scholars Award, the Fraternity Leadership Achievement Award, and the John Kenneth Crispell Memorial Award. He participated in the Study Abroad Program, which afforded him the opportunity to study at the London School of Economics. The Keller Scholarship is available to all African-American UVA students who qualify. Students are eligible to receive a one-time grant to supplement a study abroad experience during a semester, summer or J-term.

National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS)

Students have the opportunity to embark on a fully funded wilderness expedition, and leadership training through the NOLS Gateway partnership. Since its founding in 1965, the National Outdoor Leadership School has aimed to provide the environment and training necessary to help participants discover their full leadership potential. Through the NOLS Gateway partnership, the organization has had the opportunity to collaborate with organizations across the country to award full-tuition scholarships to exceptional youth who would otherwise not have access to NOLS expeditions. Each summer, up to 150 youth from up to 50 official partner organizations expand their leadership and wilderness skills at one of NOLS' seven domestic operating locations. Thousands of Gateway Partner Program graduates are now leading others in industries from conservation to software development.

Ridley-Sabato Capitol Hill Internship Stipend (Not Yet Awarded)

At least one student will be provided with a $5000 stipend as they pursue experiential learning in the fields of politics, government, and public service. The intent of this stipends is to relieve some of the financial burden associated with the acceptance of a political or governmental internship, and as such, recipients may use it to cover housing, transportation, food and business clothing expenses associated with said internships.

Richmond Ridley Clarence Cain Endowed Fund

The Ridley Club of Richmond, Virginia sponsors a full tuition-and-fees award for an exceptional African-American student from the Richmond, Virginia area. This scholarship has been the result of the collective efforts of Richmond area alumni and businesses, and will provide four years of financial support for one of the Richmond area’s best scholars. Richmond area alumni continue to raise funds toward this geographic scholarship – the first of its kind for the Ridley Fund – and encourage others to support this effort.

Michael Russell Engineering Scholarship

In 2007, School of Engineering and Applied Science alum Michael Russell of Atlanta, GA established a scholarship fund for African-Americans pursuing a degree in the School of Engineering and Applied Science at UVA. They are expected to possess the leadership and scholarship qualities that typify all Ridley Scholars.


The Gregory Ledford Endowed Fund

In 2007, McIntire School of Commerce graduate Gregory Ledford established the Gregory Ledford Endowed Scholarship to benefit a rising third year African-American Commerce School student. This scholarship provides full tuition-and-fees for two years for an African-American student who has been admitted to the School of Commerce. Preference is given for students concentrating in Finance. The chosen scholar must have a high grade point average and must demonstrate involvement in University, community or other individual extracurricular pursuits.

The Sylvia V. Terry Scholarship

Named for legendary OAAA Dean Sylvia Terry, the Terry Scholarship recognizes the scholastic and community achievements of Black or African-American students at UVA. The scholarship provides two years of full tuition-and-fees support for the recipient. Ideal applicants are rising Third Year students with strong grades, leadership activities, and community service. Because of Dean Terry’s pivotal role in creating the Peer Advisor Program, preference is given to academically strong candidates with significant experience as mentors. 

The Dr. Derek E. Brown Scholarship 

The Dr. Derek E. Brown Scholarship was created to remember Dr. Brown’s dream of helping African-American male students seeking admission to medical or dental school.  This award is designed to help qualified male students defray the high cost of applying to medical or dental school. Ridley is currently in the process of restructuring this award to benefit recent UVA graduates.

The Paige Pre-Medical Fund

This scholarship is designed to help pre-med students defray the high cost of applying to medical school. The applicant must be a fourth-year African American student at the University of Virginia who has taken all pre-medical requirements and the MCAT. Applicants must be planning to enter medical school immediately after graduating. One winner will receive a $1,500 scholarship (non-renewable), which they may use to pay for medical school application fees and interview expenses.

Annetta Thompson Fund

Family and friends honored the life of the first full-time administrator for the Walter N. Ridley Scholarship Fund by establishing this fund in 1999. The Annetta Thompson Scholarship is awarded to a deserving 4th-year Ridley scholar who exemplifies Annetta Thompson’s commitment to education. Annetta Thompson received her bachelor’s degree in education from UVA in 1973. She valued the role of education and the importance of creating opportunities for young people pursuing an education. Annetta’s hard work and diligence during her tenure as the fund administrator contributed to the tremendous growth and success of the Ridley Fund.

This Week in Black History

Did you know? On this day in history, Antigua and Barbuda gained its independence, with Vere Bird as the first Prime Minister. In the 1970s, Antigua developed an independence movement wanting complete independence for the islands from Great Britain. In 1978, Antigua officially had announced it wanted its independence. The state obtained Commonwealth membership and joined the Organization of Eastern Caribbean States.

Did you know?   On this day in history, Shirley Chisholm became the first African American woman elected to Congress. Chisholm born in Brooklyn received her undergraduate degree from Brooklyn College and a master’s degree in elementary education from Columbia University. From 1946 – 1953, she worked as a nursery schoolteacher and then as the director of two-day cares. From 1959 – 1964 she served as an educational consultant for New York City’s division of care and would then be elected to the New York state legislature. In 1972, in a symbolic undertaking she campaigned for the Democratic presidential nomination. She once told the New York Times “I am the People’s Politician.”  Chisholm passed away on January 1, 2005, in Ormond Beach at the age of 80. She wanted her legacy to be remembered with this statement… “I want history to remember me not just as the first black woman elected to Congress, not as the first black woman to have made a bid for the presidency of the United States, but as a black woman who lived in the 20th century and dared to be herself.”

OAAA Announcements & Services

OAAA/GradSTAR Lunch Series: Tuesdays @ DuBois
Every 2nd & 4th Tuesday – 12:00 pm-2:00 pm - W.E.B. DuBois Conference Rm #2 Dawson’s Row
Join Dean Antoinette Thomas for lunch and conversation. Space is limited. You must RSVP to reserve your spot.

Black Fridays
Every Friday - 1:30 pm - W.E.B. DuBois Conference Rm #2 Dawson’s Row
Come & join us for food & fellowship!


OAAA Tutoring for Fall 2021 Contact: Dean Thomas for more information
OAAA tutors meeting dates & times via In-Person & Zoom

OAAA Calculus & Statistics Tutoring with Travis Elliott
Tuesdays – 1:00 pm-3:30 pm – (in person) W.E.B. DuBois Conference Room #2 Dawson’s Row
Thursdays – 2:00 pm-4:30 pm – Zoom Room Passcode: 082999

OAAA Chemistry Tutoring with Yvette Gamor
Thursdays - 5:00 pm-7:00 pm – (in person) W.E.B. DuBois Conference Room #2 Dawson’s Row
Email for Zoom appointments if needed.

OAAA Biology & Chemistry Tutoring with Kamryn Crowder
Tuesdays – 11:00 am-1:00 pm – (in person) W.E.B. DuBois Conference Room #2 Dawson’s Row
Email for Zoom appointments if needed

OAAA Organic Chemistry Tutoring with Heran Tadesse
Mondays – 12:00 pm-2:00 pm – (in person) W.E.B. DuBois Conference Room #2 Dawson’s Row
Email for Zoom appointments if needed



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

Virtual Meditation on the Lawn 2021 Fall
Monday November 1 -- 7:45 am-8:00 am (ET) -- Register
The Virtual Meditation on the Lawn will be led by Leslie Hubbard, the Contemplative Sciences Center’s Program Director for Student Engagement and Contemplative Instruction. Join us on most Mondays, Learn more! Contact Name: Kimberly Vo

M.Ed. Higher Education Informational Session
Wednesday, November 3 – 1:00 pm-2:00 pm – Registration link
Join us for an information session regarding the M.Ed program in Higher Education. Contact Name: Alicia Cowan-Brown

What does Good and Great mean to you? UVA students participate in a Focus Group
Wednesday, November 3 – 6:00 pm - Newcomb 182, Friday, November 5 – 1:00 pm - Newcomb 182, Wednesday, November 10 – 6:00 pm - Newcomb 182, Friday, November 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm - Newcomb 182

The UVA Vice Provost Office for Academic Outreach and the UVA Career Center invites students to participate in a unique opportunity to share their experiences of how UVA’s goal of being both a “great and good” institution is impacting their college experience and translating into their future careers. Interested students will attend an in-person 1.5 hour focus group meeting where they will share and discuss their experiences. All participants will receive a $15 gift card for their time. For More Information. Contact Name: Matthew Slaats

A Sojourner’s Truth: Choosing Freedom and Courage in a Divided World: An evening with Natasha Sistrunk Robinson
Thursday, November 4 – 6:00 pm-7:00 pm – Dome Room of the Rotunda

A free public lecture open to all.  Seating is first come, first served. Natasha Sistrunk Robinson is an international speaker, mentoring coach, and thought-leader with more than 20 years of leadership experience in the military, federal government, church, seminary, and nonprofit sectors. She is the author of A Sojourner’s Truth and Mentor for Life, numerous articles, videos and blog posts. She is the President of T3 Leadership Solutions. Inc. and the Visionary Founder and Chairperson of the 501(c)(3) nonprofit, Leadership LINKS, Inc. and host of A Sojourner’s Truth podcast.   Natasha is a doctoral student at North Park Theological Seminary, a graduate of Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary Charlotte (cum laude, M.A. Leadership) and the U.S. Naval Academy. Natasha has served with the Marine Corps and Department of Homeland Security. For More Information. Contact Name: Alice Opiyo


Experiencing the Memorial to Enslaved Laborers at UVA
Friday, November 5 –11:00 am

Join Natasha, as descendant of the enslaved community Carolyn Mitchell Dillard, guides her through the MEL and engages in an impromptu conversation around the power of generational trauma and the hope of healing.
Free and open to all.  Meet at the Memorial   URL for more information: Contact Name: Alice Opiyo

VCU BSDP Virtual Open House
Tuesday, November 9 – 4:00 pm-6:00 pm (EST) -- Register Here

The Biomedical Sciences Doctoral Portal (BSDP) at Virginia Commonwealth University is hosting a virtual open house and we would like to invite you to join us. The BSDP oversees admissions for and recruits students into six Ph.D. programs within the School of Medicine. During the open house, Dr. Roxann Roberson-Nay, Assistant Dean for Graduate Recruitment and Admissions, will introduce the BSDP; the six Program Directors will provide information about their programs; you will have the opportunity to engage with students from each of the six programs in separate breakout rooms; and there will be plenty of time for questions.

School of Education and Human Development Virtual Open House
Thursday, November 11 or Wednesday, December 1 – 7:00 pm-8:00 pm – To Register

We invite students interested in becoming school counselors to apply to our M.Ed. program. UVA’s counseling program was one of the first accredited programs in the nation with a long history of producing social justice-oriented professionals who have become local, regional, and national leaders in the field of counseling. We offer a two-year, full-time cohort program in Charlottesville, VA. Click here for more information about our program and/or register to attend a virtual open house! Master's Program in Counselor Education, School Counseling Concentration.  (Zoom link will be emailed to registrants prior to event)

Mindfulness Meetups
Mondays (Now - Dec 6) – 7:00-8:00 pm & Fridays (Now – Dec 3) -- 10:00 am-11:00 am

We welcome all UVA undergraduate and graduate students to join one of our Mindfulness Meetup groups co-hosted by CSC and CAPS. Groups meet for one hour each week to learn about and practice mindfulness in a safe and supportive space. Currently, groups meet on Mondays and Fridays. New dates and times available based on student input. Learn more and register


Breath and Body Work for Brothers
Mondays – 7:00 pm-8:00 pm (EST) -- Register
On Zoom or in-person in McLeod Room 2010 Instructor: Carringon Kernodle Learn more Contact: Kimberly Vo

One-On-One Office Hours Sign-Up
Tuesdays – 9:00 am-11:30 am EST & Wednesdays – 1:00 pm-3:30 pm EST with Ryan Sherman, Academic Coordinator / Tuesdays & Wednesdays 9 AM - 12 PM EST with Jessica Livingston, Direction of Student Affairs
Meet with us to discuss our majors and get specific questions answered about transfer credits, academic requirements, recommended courses and more

Peer Financial Counseling Available!
Tuesday-Thursday – 1:00 pm-5:00 pm – Georges Student Center Room 245

Peer Financial Counseling offers all UVA students one-on-one help from trained peer counselors on a variety of topics including budgeting, student loans, personal credit, basic investing, and more. Our counselors understand the stresses that come with being a college student and want to help you better manage those factors while in school. Write to us at to schedule an appointment! For More Information! Contact Name: Dustin Ciraco


Undergraduate Research and Creative Inquiry Series
Every 1st and 3rd Wednesday – 4:00 pm – Clemons Library Room 204
We will have a workshop to support undergraduate research and creative inquiry. Every first Wednesday is a session entitled, ‘Getting Started in research and creative inquiry.’ Schedule: (full schedule to be posted by September)

Santosha for Sisters
Wednesdays – 7:00 pm-8:00pm (ET) -- Register
On Zoom or in-person in McLeod Room 2010 Instructor: Carringon Kernodle  Learn more  Contact Name: Kimberly Vo

Yoga Book Club: Bhagavad Gita
Most Fridays through the fall -- 9:00 am-10:00 am (ET)

Join the Contemplative Sciences Center’s (CSC) all-level discussion of the Bhagavad Gita, an ancient Indian text covering the underlying philosophy of classical yoga practices. No prior experience with the text is required. You may drop in on any session. Discussions, led by CSC’s John Bultman. Free and open to the public. Learn more and register Contact Name: Kimberly Vo


Connect with the School of Education and Human Development (EHD) – Zoom and In Person Opportunities!
EHD offers majors that lead to careers in teaching, public health, speech pathology and audiology, research, education policy and more. Connect with us by signing up for our mailing list or attend one of the upcoming events.

Walking Tour Sign Up
Open to current students, prospective students and families – get a tour of our buildings and meet with one of our EHD Student Ambassadors! Sign Up Here!


UVA Mutual Aid Free Store
Donate Today!
UVA Mutual Aid has created a radical community of care at UVA since it’s inception in March of 2020. As we implement our broader goals for Mutual Aid at UVA, the next step in our journey is to create a free store with resources. The free store will include clothes, healthcare products and more for all university students and workers. Follow us for updates and to join us in galvanizing change towards an equitable UVA. Please donate and share today! For more information. Contact Name: Sarandon Elliott