MPS Black and Latino teens take steps toward college

October 27, 2022

The University of Wisconsin- Milwaukee (UWM) welcomed students in the Milwaukee Public School’s (MPS) Black and Latino Male Achievement program in October to provide support and inspiration toward positive career journeys. About 250 students from nine MPS schools arrived by bus at the UWM Student Union where they toured the campus, met with mentors, learned about college life, and considered career options.

Now in its sixth year, the MPS Black and Latino Male Achievement (BLMA) Department offers programming to help male high school students of color to be inspired, achieve, and plan their futures. Events throughout the school year, including mentor luncheons, connect teens with volunteers from professional communities who share their personal stories of struggle and success.

“The camaraderie built through our programs really makes a difference for these students,” said Paul Moga, BLMA Coordinator. “This event allows our young men to see themselves on campus with their peers. Experiences like this help them realize that college is a place for them and they will get the supports they need.”

MPS Black and Latino Male Achievement (BLMA) Department events over the past years have been rich and diverse, and boys have expressed appreciation for hearing how men have overcome obstacles and achieved success. Topics have included:

• Perspectives on authority and power, and appropriate and inappropriate use of both
• Discussions on the importance of cultural identity, self-esteem, and self-care for manhood
• The meaning of fatherhood and the responsibilities of parenting
• Employment and careers, and understanding how public school education is a starting point to an ongoing road to success. BLMA seeks mentors for this life-changing program. Interested mentors can contact BLMA at blma@milwaukee.k12.wi.us or 414- 475-8631.