The Truth is Powerful
Letters: Access to higher education is key to improving equality
June 19 marks the 157th anniversary of Juneteenth, a celebration of the abolishment of slavery. On that day in 1865, Union troops arrived in Galveston, Texas, proclaiming the good news to enslaved African Americans that they were free. Although the Emancipation Proclamation had officially ended slavery in Texas and other Southern states in 1863, enforcement depended on Union troops.
While Juneteenth has been celebrated in Black communities for more than 150 years, it was not officially recognized as a federal holiday until 2021. I am pleased to see many companies — including Western Governors University, where I work — recognize Juneteenth as a holiday for employees and place emphasis throughout the year on advancing equity.
Juneteenth is very important to me as a Black man who has devoted his career to higher education. It reminds me that more needs to be done to erase the inequalities that result from decades of discrimination and unfair treatment.
Many barriers still hold people of color back, often leading to socioeconomic inequalities in every phase of life. This is evident not only in former slave states but also in Chicago. Because of my current work and prior positions with City Colleges of Chicago, I firmly believe […]