Wikimedia Commons

Wikimedia Commons

Can you imagine how lit it would be to live in the equivalent of a campus African American or multicultural center as a college student? Well Cal State LA students don’t have to imagine as the school just opened the Halisi Scholars Black Living-Learning Community, a new on-campus dorm housing students interested in issues that specifically affect Blacks.

Unsurprisingly, there’s a wait list to get in the space where 24 students will reside. And equally unsurprising is the fact that the school has drawn criticism over what some, like the Washington Post, have deemed “segregated housing.” Cal State L.A. spokesman Robert Lopez isn’t having it, pointing out that the university has several themed living communities (first-year, honors, gender-neutral) and Halisi is no different. “This community is open to all students,” he told the LA Times. “This living-learning community focuses on academic excellence and learning experiences that are inclusive and non-discriminatory.”

Cal State’s website describes the living community as a place “designed to enhance the residential experience for students who are a part of or interested in issues of concern to the black community living on campus by offering the opportunity to connect with faculty and peers, and engage in programs that focus on academic success, cultural awareness, and civic engagement.”

The Black Living-Learning Community came about as a result of demands made by CSLA’s Black Student Union in response to charges of various “racist attacks” on campus. Other demands include a “$30 million dollar scholarship endowment to aid black students, three new black faculty counselors, a new anti-discrimination policy and cultural competency course for faculty and students.”

It’s nice to see Cal State kept their promise and moved quickly on this new living community. What’s your take on the new campus housing?


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