“Those with less opportunity are fighting for position, trying to find their place, but those with privilege are hitting triples, when they were already on third base.”
This succinct description of white privilege came from the video The Black Bruins by Sy Stokes, which went viral.
This excerpt from an article by Eric Hoover in the Chronicle of Higher Education, tells how the video changed UCLA:
Mr. Stokes was happy that after years of debate, the university had approved the diversity-course requirement in April. There were plans for a black resource center. Meetings between administrators and the Black Male Institute continued. Still, he wished he would see more black men in caps and gowns.
The university is working on that harder than ever, officials say. About a year ago, UCLA started a partnership with 20 nearby high schools that’s designed to increase the number of underrepresented students who apply to college. Youlonda Copeland-Morgan, associate vice chancellor for enrollment management, credits Mr. Stokes with sparking the conversations that led to the initiative. “What he and his peers did was to help us think more boldly and to be more aggressive,” she says. “They put an exclamation point on this problem.”
Despite his complaints about the university, Mr. Stokes feels a bond with it. He worked for Connecting Communities to UCLA, a program that brings students from underserved high schools to the campus. While running information sessions about applying to college and finding scholarships,he encouraged young black students to consider UCLA. It could change their lives, he told them. “Looking back at this school, I can’t hate it,” he says. “It transformed who I was, even though what transformed me was the chance to go against something.”