Umoja, meaning Unity in Swhaili, is a student initiated and student run retention program dedicated to keeping African/Black identified students here at UC Santa Cruz.
Our goal is to have them graduate with having felt a sense of support and encouragement from other students, faculty and their community.
We aim to address the needs of our community in hopes to hold accountable any and all programs/centers that fail to support our community by making sure that we receive what we deserve for a socially and academically balanced life here at UCSC.
We also aim to help unite and engage our community on different levels of being in college so that they feel the need to keep themselves and our community present at UCSC. Because without unity there is no community.
Meet the 2018-2019 Umoja Coordinator:
Hello! My name is Emmanuella Tetteh (she/her/hers) and I am the 2018-2019 Lead Intern for Umoja. A little bit about me, I’m a 2nd year human biology major at UCSC. My family is from Accra, Ghana and I am the first generation born American in my family.
My role as an intern is to organize events and produce programming geared towards the retention of ABC-Identified student on campus. As an intern I hope to be able to maintain an environment that empowers and uplifts my community so that they can have a brave space on campus. A brave space is important to any community, but especially those which are geared towards social justice. These spaces are centered around respect, the ownership of intention and impacts, and controversy with civility among other things. Navigating through institutions of higher education which have historically disadvantaged student of color means that extra work and effort must be done in order to ensure the success of ABC-Identified Students on campus.
“One of the most important keys to maintaining and even enhancing our health and sense of well-being in this time of great challenge to black people is the strengthening of our sense of family and community while deepening our bonds of trust. For black people, family-care, and community-care, like self-care are radical acts.”
- Communnity Healing Network & The Association of Black Pyschologists, Inc.**