The Black Educational Achievement Movement (BEAM) operates as a
“Sankofa Village” model. Where a collective of Black educational service
providers and Black professionals in both the public and private sectors are committed to reaching back to help our youth, by challenging the insistent disregard of the hopes, dreams and achievements of Black students in the public and private classrooms. Hence, BEAM unites an intergenerational cross section of culturally-proficient community-based organizations that have bridged their years of expertise to elevate and acknowledge youth of African descent who are in pursuit of middle school, high school and post-secondary educational attainment that will prepare them for the globe marketplace.
BEAM Village began as a small pilot program at Portland Community College - Cascade Campus called The Passage to Higher Education (2010-14). A network of 10 to 15 Black academic advisers, educators, and students came together to use informal mentoring and supplemental learning programming to increase school retention and graduation rates of African American/Black students on the PCC campus.
Four years later, the network realized that providing co-curricular services would be insufficient without major changes in classroom practices and system-wide policies related to school and community relations. Hence, the network joined community members and planned the first Black Student Success Summit (BSSS) in March 2014.