Bottom line…the Community College of Baltimore County focuses on the improving the success rate of their male students and some renewed funding has given the program new life!
The Male Student Success Initiative (MSSI) is a network of support for students who attend the Community College of Baltimore County. The initiative consists of men of color, with approximately 90% of those being African American men from the Baltimore Metropolitan area.
The primary objectives of the initiative include, but are not limited to, providing dedicated mentorship, helping men to prepare for and obtain internships, and assisting with building brotherhood and community for students. All of these principles are closely correlated with successful graduation and effective transfer.
Part of the uniqueness of MSSI is that students are organized into micro-brotherhoods which are focused on their respective majors or programs of study. For example, cohorts are curated by gentlemen who wish to pursue careers in business, healthcare, and engineering. Based on interests, these aspiring men work in distinct cohorts which are led by a dedicated mentor. Additionally, these cohorts work together to create and organize MSSI sponsored events which make a positive difference in the world we live in.
One of these events was sponsored by STEMulating Minds (SM). SM invited Dean Oscar Barton, Jr. (Morgan State University’s School of Engineering) to speak to their cohort, and he did so by offering an MSSI bridge to Morgan with financial support, and assistance with helping student enrolment into the School of Engineering.
The SM cohort has received more than $12,000.00 in grants that will allow students to join NSBE (National Society for Black Engineers) with the purpose of building and launching rockets. YES, launch rockets! Providing students with experiential learning opportunities and launching rockets is one of the examples that give our men opportunities that they would not encounter outside of MSSI.
MSSI also has an Advisory Board. One of the primary components of the Board is to assist students with internship opportunities. Students have been able to garner internships with Stanley, Black and Decker and with various charter schools. To secure these interns, students must have a certain GPA, number of credits completed, and attend an information session.
To continuously engage young men, speakers and other events are geared around student registration and orientation. Additionally, opportunities are provided for male students to attend statewide and national conferences with overnight stays. Within this realm, students gain experience in professional development settings – skills that will last a lifetime.
To maintain engagement with the high school community, MSSI is working with the Baltimore County and Baltimore City School Systems, as well as other entities like CollegeBound Foundation, to orient male high school male students of color to the features and promises of MSSI.
MSSI is working tirelessly to support and to promote exceptional opportunities for men of color at the Community College of Baltimore County. They do this with a wide approach to engagement, quality and accomplishment. If your company or organization offers internship opportunities, we encourage you to consider CCBC’s Male Student Success Initiatives. To learn more about this amazing program: https://www.ccbcmd.edu/Campus-Life-and-Activities/Male-Student-Success.aspx.