ILBCF Announces 2017 Legislative Research Fellows
by Larry Luster, Illinois Legislative Black Caucus Foundation Executive Director, @ilbcfoundation
The Illinois Legislative Black Caucus Foundation is proud to announce its inaugural class of legislative research fellows. Fellows were selected from a large pool of talented applicants that were, after much deliberation, narrowed down to four recipients. Applicants were tasked with developing a legislative proposal that aimed to positively impact the Black community. Fellows are responsible for drafting memos, developing fact sheets, executing communication strategies, preparing presentations, legislative analysis and impact analysis. Our fellows will be providing the Council on Urban Affairs information to help ILBC members make informed decisions that helps that black community, while developing the next group of leaders through work experience.
Below are a list of our fellows:
Presently, Crystal is a high school counselor at the Urban Prep Charter Academy for Young Men, in Chicago Illinois. She is a 2nd year PhD student of Community Psychology at National Louis University with a dissertation entitled “Survivors Guilt vs. the ‘Sell Out’: Social Barriers to College Persistence for African American First Generation College Students”, which explores the self sabotaging behaviors of this student population. Crystal holds a BA in Television Production and Directing from Columbia College Chicago; an MA in Counseling and an MEd in Educational Leadership from Lewis University, and Post Graduate Certification from the National Institute for Urban School Leaders at Harvard University. Through a grant from the Pollination Project, in December 2016, Crystal started First2Finish, a non-profit college access program targeting first generation students and making investments for college readiness beginning in the first grade. First2Finish will enroll its “First Class” of participants in Fall 2018.
Subria A. Whitaker
Subria A. Whitaker is from Chicago’s South Side and her family currently resides in the Morgan Park Neighborhood. An alumna of Morgan Park High School, Subria graduated from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign with a Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Arts and Sciences with Distinction in Communication in May, 2016. She is currently pursuing a Master’s Degree in Sport Administration from Northwestern University’s School of Professional Studies. Last summer, Subria was selected by the Delta Research and Educational Foundation to participate in the Congressional Black Caucus Emerging Leaders Program where she served as the 2016 Stephanie Tubbs Jones Intern in the Office of United States Congresswoman Marcia L. Fudge. She’d previously served as an Undergraduate Intern in the Office of the Attorney General for the District of Columbia.
Malayzja D. Anderson
Malayzja D. Anderson is currently pursuing a Master’s Degree in World History from the University of Illinois at Springfield. Her current research interests include student activism, 20th century social movements and Middle Eastern history. As a Graduate Assistant in UIS’s Diversity Center, Malayzja develops student programing aimed at retaining minority students and facilitates micro-aggression reduction workshops. Malayzja is currently the Treasurer for the UIS Rotaract Club, Vice President of Graduate Assistants in their union and a mentor for the Necessary Steps Mentor Program at UIS. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in African American Studies and another in History from Chicago State University. In 2014 Malayzja served as a Public Policy Intern in Senator Kimberly A. Lightford’s district office.
Ndjuoh MehChu, a native of Jersey City, New Jersey, is a third-year J.D. Candidate at the University of Chicago Law School. At the Law School, he is an active member of the Mandel Legal Aid Clinic’s Criminal and Juvenile Justice Project and previously served as a clinical student in the Law School’s Civil Rights and Police Accountability Project. Ndjuoh has extensive experience in issues at the intersection of social justice and human rights. He has held positions at the ACLU of Illinois and the Legal Assistance Foundation of Chicago. Ndjuoh previously served as an International Human Rights research fellow at the University of Lucerne School of Law in Lucerne, Switzerland and again at the University of Milan, Cattolica in Milan, Italy. Prior to Law School, Ndjuoh worked as a Special Education and Math teacher in the South Bronx. Ndjuoh is also a graduate of Rutgers University, New Brunswick with degrees in Economics and Africana Studies.