The mission of the Brotherhood Initiative at the University of Washington Seattle is to empower undergraduate males of color to thrive on campus and graduate prepared for a lifetime of leadership, service, and success.
The BI is a collaborative partnership among the College of Education, Undergraduate Academic Affairs, Office of Minority Affairs and Diversity, Division of Student Life, Graduate School, and Office of Enrollment Management. Guided by a steering committee of staff, faculty, students, and volunteers, the three primary goals of the Brotherhood Initiative are to:
- Promote student growth, academic outcomes, and success by creating a community of scholars
- Improve the UW’s collective capacity to engage and support men of color
- Conduct interdisciplinary research to inform research and policy nationwide
Theory of Action
The Brotherhood Initiative theory of action centers on four developmental areas for students:
- Academic guidance and support
- Psychosocial and identity development
- Career development and professionalization
- Community engagement and leadership development
The layered circles around the students signify our emphasis on cross-campus collaboration to help students access a network of support systems. The outermost circle represents the BI’s use of an equity-based inquiry cycle, in which we continuously assess and co-design improvements with our campus partners and students.
Our overarching goal is to increase equitable outcomes for men of color, and we do this by focusing on both student support and institutional change.
Holistic Student Support
The BI focuses on connecting participants to the types of transformative educational experiences that enable them to discover their passions and pursue their dreams. Designed to serve as a cross-racial, cohort-based support system, the BI holistically promotes the academic, personal, and leadership development of underrepresented men of color at the UW.
Collective Impact for Institutional Change
A main goal of the BI is to be a catalyst for larger organizational change that reduces the graduation gap at the UW between underrepresented men of color and their peers. We are committed to working with practitioners to scale up what we learn from the Brotherhood Initiative to the larger institution, and to institutions beyond the UW.