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The BLMA Manhood Development Academy elective, credit course is currently implemented in four MPS schools. A positive racial/ethnic identity is a factor for resilience for young men of color. Current literature (Neblett, Rivas-Drake, and Umaña-Taylor, 2012; Sellers et al., 2006) suggest that when students of color internalize a sense of pride about their racial/ethnic identity, they are:
- Going to feel more connected to school.
- More likely to experience positive mental health.
- More likely to have positive relationships in life.
- More likely to overcome stereotype threat.
- More likely to succeed academically.
The content of the course promotes positive racial/ethnic identity by using culturally relevant materials and text as well as incorporating twelve guiding principles for our young men to live by. We owe it to our young men to provide an environment where they can explore, validate, and affirm their identity.
We believe this course will foster leadership within our young men and help in improving the overall culture and climate of their schools.