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Advocacy

Black Student Achievement is dedicated to providing a safe and welcoming environment for students of color. Black Student Achievement can advocate for students individually to resolve an issue or help them to develop the skills needed to advocate for themselves. Black Student Achievement can work with groups to help them develop an advocacy approach. From societal issues of social justice to campus involvement and inclusion, Black Student Achievement is committed to supporting the student voice. Black Student Achievement encourages all students to seek services when needed.

Advocacy is the act of supporting a particular cause for a specific desired outcome. There are many different types of advocacy. The types of advocacy relevant to Black Student Achievement include independent (issue based advocacy), self-advocacy and group advocacy. Independent or issue based advocacy involves a one to one short term partnership between a professional and a person dealing with a specific issue with which they need assistance. Once the issue is resolved, the advocacy relationship usually ends until it is needed again. Self-advocacy is often seen as the ideal form of advocacy. It involves individuals speaking out for themselves to express their own needs and represent their own interests. Group advocacy is when people come together to represent shared interests or goals, such as developing or changing services, and offer each other support and skill development.

There are five steps students can take to effectively advocate for themselves and others:

  1. Determine the issue.
  2. Identify allies.
  3. Identify potential opponents and resistance factors.
  4. Determine how to involve all parties
  5. Develop a plan for a specific desired outcome.

For more information or assistance with advocacy skills, visit Black Student Achievement in Student Center East, Suite 300, call at 404-413-1530 or email.