Minority male initiative at GHC receives $20,000 award

The African-American Male Initiative (AAMI) program at Georgia Highlands College, known as GHAME, recently received a $20,000 award through the AAMI University System of Georgia (USG) Leadership Team to help support the program.

The award will help the organization to continue its mission by funding academic skills enrichment, student support services, adult and peer mentoring as well as leadership development.

“This funding has been instrumental in providing programming to the GHAME students, which has led to GHC having the highest retention and graduation rates in our sector for minority males the last four years in a row,” GHAME Coordinator Evan Snelling said.

Since its inception in 2008, the initiative has received state and national recognition, and members have gone on to successful and meaningful careers around the country. For example, the organization has helped members such as Eduardo Rico and Dominic Weems to build a foundation during their time as students and to succeed in their personal lives.

“The award will fund several critical elements of the GHAME Initiative, which include a professional development series, leadership training, a GHAME networking reception and Foundation Camp Counselor costs,” Project Director of Inclusion and Equity Jon Hershey said. “In addition, the award is a recognition of success that impacts how the college community thinks about the initiative and how student members think about themselves.”

“African-American men who have participated in GHAME have increased their success rates tremendously, but that is not the case for minority men who are not in the program,” Hershey said. “The numbers prove that AAMI is still a vital and necessary program.”