Corrigan Speaks at Bayview Church


by Angela Bacca, staff writer

FEBRUARY 19, 2007 11:17 PM

SF State President Robert Corrigan spoke Sunday morning to the congregation at the Providence Baptist Church in San Francisco’s Bayview District.

His appearance was part of the California State University’s “Super Sunday” program to encourage lower income African-American high school students to apply to one of the 23 CSU campuses.

“[Your Parents] and grandparents could only clean toilets of these schools and now you have the responsibility to earn a degree from them,” Reverend Calvin Jones Jr. said, addressing individual members of the congregation.

Rev. Jones welcomed Corrigan to speak at both the 8 a.m. and 10:45 a.m. services at Providence Baptist.

This is the second annual “Super Sunday” event. CSU representatives were in African-American communities all over the state including Oakland, Richmond, and Los Angeles. Featured in the talks were the availability of financial aid and the steps necessary to get a typical high school student the requirements necessary to be accepted at a CSU.

“Eighty percent of African-Americans have a high school diploma, only 17 percent [aged] 25 or older have a college degree,” said Corrigan. “That is a shame.”

The president’s visit comes on the heels of a bolstered interest in the Bayview community and efforts made by the city to make it safer, cleaner, and more productive for the younger generations of children growing up there.

“We want to get them away from the street corner and let them know they can achieve… we will be with you at San Francisco State,” Corrigan said, beaming.

Reverend Jones embraced Corrigan and praised the message that he had delivered.

“Education is a means of triumphing over [obstacles],” he said.

After his speech, Corrigan left immediately for another San Francisco church. When asked about his experience at Providence, Corrigan said “It feels great, its terrific to see young people interested.”

“Last year we saw a 12 percent increase in [African-American] applicants,” Corrigan said.

San Francisco State students and members of an ASI run campus group called “Project Connect” were present to answer any questions and pass out information after the service.

“When students are here and see other students like us its encouraging,” said Sabrina Aranda, 23, a psychology major. Aranda, along with other students present at the service are enrolled in a class through the Ethnic Studies Department to do outreach projects around the city, including visiting local schools and events such as “Super Sunday”.

“I think it is interesting, I am surprised,” said Renee Boyd, a member of the congregation at Providence for the last four years.”It’s just something I have never seen before.”

Information about future “Super Sunday” events or other events sponsored by Project Connect can be obtained by calling the College of Ethnic Studies at (415) 338-1694.

» E-mail Angela Bacca @ abacca@sfsu.edu

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