The Chicago-area Oakton Community College has started an academy exclusively for black men in collaboration with the nearby Evanston Township High School.
The Emory Williams Academy for Black Men, which launches this fall, will provide a two-year academic program that culminates in an associate degree, assistance transferring to a four-year university, or other vocational opportunities.
The program will also offer financial aid, scholarships and “additional financial resources,” its website states. The Daily Northwestern reported it’s a “free degree program for Black, male-identifying locals.”
It will offer students academic pathways in fields such as computer science, marketing, engineering, accounting, law enforcement and criminal justice, business, and cannabis studies.
The academy’s values statement reads in part: “We advance equity by acknowledging the harm perpetrated against Black men by systemic racism in all levels of their education, and intentionally disrupting it here at the College.”
The program’s exclusion of non-Black male candidates does not run afoul of federal guidelines, according to the college.
“The development of the Emory Williams Academy does not violate any laws. Oakton Community College is an open-access institution to which all students are invited to apply, enroll and access services,” spokesman Steve Butera told The College Fix via email.