In 2015, students came together to address a campus wide issue; black male student engagement. In college governments, Student Association, and registered student organizations, there was zero to minimal presence of black men. The group worked together to develop a structure to become a group recognized today as the Black Male Leadership Initiative. Their purpose is to connect black men on campus and prepare them for campus leadership positions.
The Black Male Leadership Initiative (BMLI) was established to foster a sense of brotherhood within the Black male population at Rice by developing a sense of belonging, empowerment while developing critical experiential leadership skills. The BMLI supports its members by providing opportunities for fellowship, personal and intellectual growth and development, both on and off campus. BMLI seeks to enhance Rice’s community through leadership, mentorship, and service to others.
Leadership: We develop young black men that have the confidence, skills, and vision to meet and overcome 21st century challenges.
Service: We surround students with mentoring who epitomize strong self-image, self-esteem, and are intentional about supporting students in fulfilling the goals they have for themselves.
Mentorship: We engage students in community service initiatives that directly impact and influence the next generation of people be reinforcing the value of lifelong reciprocity.
1. Increase the retention of Black male students to a rate higher than campus rate of Black men.
2. Encourage participants to share valuable lessons learned with students, staff, faculty, and friends.
3. Foster a community where Black men feel welcome, included, and respected.