News and Events

Three CFS Members Selected to Support USF’s Anti-Racism Efforts

Congratulations to CFS’s Anna Abella, Monica Landers and Ruby Joseph who were selected as grant recipients as part of a USF effort to address racial issues and attitudes on a local, national and global scale. They will be working on two projects among the 23 selected by the USF Research Task Force on Understanding and Addressing Blackness and Anti-Black Racism that are exploring a wide range of issues in systemic inequality, economic and health disparities, Black history and contemporary challenges for funding. Their projects are:

A Strengths-Based Approach to Addressing Racial Challenges Impacting Black Students

PI: Ruby Joseph
Co-Pi's: Fenda Akiwumi; LaTosha Thomas
Project Coordinator: Renee Anderson
Researcher: Angela Vatalaro
Consultant: Richard Briscoe
Community Partner: Corporation to Develop Communities of Tampa, Inc.

This grant will investigate Black student enrollment, retention and graduation disparities in institutions of higher learning. The project will examine racial, educational and other challenges faced by two groups of Black students: USF Tampa juniors and seniors and 12th grade students in East Tampa who are planning to attend a four-year university in 2021-2022. The project aims to develop a comprehensive action plan of solutions that addresses specific disparities in enrollment, graduation and other issues identified in the focus groups.

Challenges to Engagement with Parent Education and Early Childhood Programming in a Historically Black Neighborhood

PIs: Elizabeth Hordge-Freeman, Anna Abella, Kyaien Conner, Monica Landers, and Ronee Wilson
Community Partner: Champions for Children

This study highlights programs developed at Layla's House, an initiative of Champions for Children, which provides early childhood and parenting resources to support economically disadvantaged families residing in the predominantly Black neighborhood of Sulphur Springs. The study will examine engagement among Black children and families and participation in virtual parent education and developmental playgroups with a focus on the extent to which the service structure minimizes or accentuates the impact of anti-Black racism.

Projects span eight USF colleges and all three campuses in Tampa, St. Petersburg and Sarasota-Manatee will be part of the year-long effort funded through $500,000 provided by the Office of the Provost and USF Research & Innovation.

For additional information, view the USF news article.