The SCC ASHÉ Center and Umoja program offer services to black students


Canva Image

The ASHÈ Center at SCC and the Umoja program held an event detailing the services available to black students on Feb. 9. The event also allowed for an open discussion in which attendees were able to speak on their experiences as black students.

The ASHÉ Center and Umoja program at Sacramento City College held the “Welcome Black Event: Amplify My Excellence” where they talked about the benefits of each program on Feb. 9.

Every Wednesday, the ASHÉ Center has workshops for students.

Student Personnel Specialist Lisa Hayden said the workshops would run through April and cover topics like financial literacy, nutrition, black self love and mental help.

ASHE stands for African American Student Healing and Empowerment and the emphasis of the ASHÉ Center is to provide a space for black college students.

Hayden said there are “culturally responsive” black therapists available for students to talk about school and life.

Mariana Mendez, who is known as Miss Mariana, was the keynote speaker. She’s a former Sacramento City College student who is active in her community and specializes in personal development and professional development.

Mendez reiterated “acknowledging the sacred,” which she explained as “acknowledging the sacred in you and the sacred all around us.”

Mendez also talked about the black community experiencing multiple pandemics. Along with COVID-19, Mariana said the community faces a battle with mental health.

“If we don’t check in mentally, physically and emotionally, it is very difficult to navigate to the end goal of where we truly want to be,” Mendez said.

Some attendees volunteered to describe some of the symptoms they’ve experienced due to their mental health.

“We are advocating for you to have safe spaces so that you know you can have your emotions and feelings validated and related to by people that look like and care about you,” Mendez said.

When asked what the next step to tackling mental health should be, Mendez said it’s time to “show up to glow up.” Mendez said this included being present in class and getting extra vocal.

“If somebody explains something to you one time and you don’t get it, make them work all the degrees that they went to school for and ask again,” Mendez said.

Mendez also suggested making a to-do list and holding yourself accountable to it and deadlines.

All Los Rios students can find more information about the ASHÉ center here.