African-American Male Initiative Program
Over the years, AAMI has proven to be effective in increasing RPG rates for African-American males. African-American males are enrolling at higher rates, and more of them are being retained beyond the first and second years of college. Data show students are able to progress and be retained if they are receiving the right support, utilizing available resources, and feel more connected to campus by being involved. AAMI provides the support needed while encouraging students to get involved on campus.
We believe all students can be successful at UWG. With hard work, discipline, dedication, and determination, these students can be successful in and outside of the classroom. Our goal is that 100% of all students, particularly, African-American males, graduate within 4-6 years.
The mission of the African-American Male Initiative at the University of West Georgia is to significantly increase retention, progression, and graduation (RPG) rates of African-American males attending the University of West Georgia.
HISTORY WITH A PURPOSE
In 2000, the University System of Georgia (USG) verified that USG institutions enrolled a low percentage of African-American males in comparison to the percentage of African-American males in the population. For example, within the USG, African-American females out-numbered African-American males two to one (28,000 to 14,000) even though the percentage of African-American males and females in the population was about the same. A similar situation exists in almost every University System in the country.
In response, the USG developed an initiative aimed at identifying barriers to the participation of African-American males in University System of Georgia colleges and universities. The end result was the African-American Male Initiative (AAMI). The initiative focuses on the retention, progression, and graduation (RPG) of African-American males at USG institutions.
The University of West Georgia (UWG) has been associated with the University System of Georgia African-American Male Initiative (AAMI) since 2002. Enrollments for new African-American male freshmen have increased significantly during the past several years. However, retaining and graduating African-American males continues to be an important issue for UWG and other USG institutions; which causes us to continue making this initiative an important priority. Data from AAMI Academic Transition Programs (AAMI-FYP's), which are also known as learning communities, demonstrate the effectiveness of AAMI. Therefore, UWG's commitment to AAMI and its effectiveness remains strong. Our goal is to increase RPG rates for African-American males and all students matriculating here. With hard work and dedication, we believe all students deciding to COME WEST can graduate!
AAMI First-Year Program
The AAMI First-Year Program or AAMI Learning Community (AAMI-LC) helps African-American male students adjust academically and socially to college life.
Students are enmeshed in an environment of mutual support designed to foster academic success. During fall and spring semesters of their freshman year, students enroll in and attend common core courses together, including XIDS 2002. Merging educational and social activities allows students to make friends easily, establish study partners, and develop positive connections with faculty, which increases chances of success. The AAMI-LC increases opportunities for students to get involved on and off-campus (e.g., student organizations, community service, and more).
Students' academic progress is monitored. Attempts are made to address issues impacting student success whether it is academic, vocational, or personal/social as soon as they become known. In addition, AAMI-LC students receive individualized mentoring through the AAMI Peer Mentoring Program.
AAMI First-Year Program participants are selected prior to classes beginning for the FALL term. Students must enroll in the fall because the duration of the program is one full year (August - April). To enroll, students must meet the following criteria:
- Potential participants are identified and personally invited after students meet all requirements to be officially admitted to the University.
- Complete and return an interest form.
- Complete interview process. It is highly recommended that parent(s) and/or guardian(s) participate in the interview with their student(s).
- Must enroll in XIDS 2002 and take required courses of the AAMI-LC.
- Expected to meet expectations of program and be committed to program goals.
While helpful in determining interest, it is important to understand that selecting "African-American Male Initiative" (AAMI-LC) as one of your top three choices for your first-year program when completing registration for Freshmen Orientation, completing this information on the online registration form for Orientation does not guarantee participation. Participation is determined by the AAMI Program.
Students and parents interested in learning more about the AAMI and the first-year program are welcome to call (678) 839-5400 or send an email message by clicking on "Ask AAMI" under "Request Information".
The AAMI Alumni Council was established in 2019, with Cesquinn Curtis (class of 2005), Brandon Scott (class of 2005), and Wilmani Humphries (class of 2015) as its founding members. Along with the AAMI Coordinator, the Alumni Council meets semiannually to discuss the status of the AAMI program, as well as plan events in support of AAMI strategic objectives. UWG alumni who participated in AAMI and are interested in joining the Alumni Council should contact the AAMI Coordinator (firstname.lastname@example.org).