Advice to Students

Be yourself. If you're a person of color be proud.(1) - Shaun Carter

Some of the BCM Family!

In general, narrators encouraged incoming students of color to be themselves and to be proud of who they are. For students coming to college for the first time, they advised them to try to find a major they’re passionate about, accentuating the importance of going to class and actively keep up with their studies. To help ease the transitionespecially for students coming from urban areas or regions vastly different from Lancaster Countynarrators overwhelmingly stressed using the resources available to them, such as the Office of Learning Services, Health Services, and Organization Outbreak. In return, they could use these resources to form an open line of communication between themselves and their peers, their advisors, and university faculty in order to build a network and support system. For Diamonic Holmes, getting involved helped to protect their rights and their interests as an individual that’s a part of an outgroup or a minority by ensuring that they were represented and that their voice was heard.

On a personal level, a majority of narrators emphasized the significance of keeping an open mind and learning to be patient and willing to understand opposing viewpoints. A handful of narrators acknowledged that the greatest challenge they faced in college became the struggle to remain themselves in an environment where they constituted the minority. This offered an opportunity for students of color to learn how to “navigate the path to success even as [an] outgroup” without sacrificing who they were.(2) In essence, to learn how to achieve their goals and compete alongside their white peers and colleagues.

Academics:

  • "First of all, like what you said earlier, don’t use your color, to an excuse for your grades.  I didn’t study. Really. You need to study."(3)  - Elizabeth Wright
Superfest Older

Build a Network:

  • "Get involved early, like join the NAACP, BSU, join any other org(anization) because like I said, these are the people that you're going to be around pretty much the rest . . . of your college career and you want to have the most resources as possible."(4) - Unnamed Narrator

  • "Get involved like because I said with an out group so you want to make sure you're protecting your rights and your own interests."(5) - Diamonic Holmes
  • "So, first I would say, um, for those students that do go through PSSI, keep that support network. Like, really, really keep it because at a point when you're here I feel like—especially a student of color and especially if you do come from an urban area—you don't have that support system in which you're supposed to. So, you're not used to it, so you might not want to reach out to a professor or someone to help you. A lot of times, from what I found talking to my friends who've gone through the same thing and come from those areas, it's like you kind of suffer in silence and you try and stay afloat the best you can on your own, but you always end up thinking. So, I would really say communication and asking for help; building that network so that you will be supported both academically with the faculty as well as in your personal circles cause’ that really does make a difference I feel like."(6) - Caseem Luck

Students During APSCUF Union Strike

Personal:

  • "Just try to maintain who you are as a person and eventually you’ll make friends."(7) - Ashley Pricher

  • "And just be proud of who you are."(8) - Sardis Melo
  • "Don't just take your first impression of someone and make it your last."(9) - Diavian Gunner

  • "I would give them advice to try not to stereotype so much when you first come here. I think when you do that it kind of puts you in a bubble and it puts you in a sets you away from new opportunities because when you start having those stereotypes it kind of stops you from taking on opportunities because you're like 'Oh, I don't know what they're thinking' or 'Oh they may all be racist' or something like that. So the best thing to do is to come I mean in college in general you should come in with an open mind especially if you're a person of color and you're coming to this type of institution."(10) - Evelyn Dais

  • "Don’t believe everything you see."(11) - Taylor Muse 
  • "Just to be open and give people chances, you know but not too many chances."(12) - Tyrone Gibson

  • "Be aware, be persistent and be very very vigilant. Millersville is a safe place, it’s not the safest but Millersville is indeed a safe place. Acknowledge your surroundings and acknowledge who you are talking to, know the kind of environment that you are in and make smart decisions."(13) - Terrence Pearson

Preparation for Real Life:

  • "Like Millersville has taught me like how to navigate the path to success as even as outgroup like without like selling out and someone you don't have to be."(14) - Diamonic Holmes

1. Shaun Carter, interview by Emily Young and Lauren Davis, May 8th, 2018, transcript, Millersville University Archives and Special Collections, Millersville, PA

2. Diamonic Holmes, interview by Carley Allen, May 8th, 2018, transcript, Millersville University Archives and Special Collections, Millersville, PA

3. Elizabeth Wright, interview by Michael Lynch and Eliana Pablon, December 6th, 2017, transcript, Millersville Un iversity Archives and Special Collections, Millersville, PA

4. Unnamed Narrator, interview by Riley Sharp, April 7th, 2018, transcript, Millersville University Archives and Special Collections, Millersville, PA

5. Holmes, interview

6. Caseem Luck, interview by Lauren Hart, December 6th, 2017, transcript, Millersville University Archives and Special Collections, Millersville, PA

7. Ashley Pricher, interview by Caitlin Moyerwhere, December 6th, 2017, transcript, Millersville University Archives and Special Collections, Millersville, PA

8. Sardis Melo, interview by Morgan Greathouse, May 4th, 2018, transcript, Millersville University Archives and Special Collections, Millersville, PA

9. Diavian Gunner, interview by Julia Pavlow, November 14, 2017, transcript, Millersville University Archives and Special Collections, Millersville, PA

10. Evelyn Dais, interview by Basil Wright, March 26th, 2018, transcript, Millersville University Archives and Special Collections, Millersville, PA

11. Taylor Muse, interview by Kial Maynard, April 5th, 2018, transcript, Millersville University Archives and Special Collections, Millersville, PA

12. Tyrone Gibson, interview by Meranda Pfamatter, May 2nd, 2018, transcript, Millersville University Archives and Special Collections, Millersville, PA

13. Terrence Pearson, interview by Basil Wright, May 1st, 2018, transcript, Millersville University Archives and Special Collections, Millersville, PA

14. Holmes, interview