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West Florissant, Mo. Explodes in Protest of Police Shooting, More Than 30 Arrests

West Florissant, Mo. Explodes in Protest of Police Shooting, More Than 30 Arrests

Special to the NNPA from the St. Louis American

The Target parking lot of the Buzz Westfall Shopping Center was filled with dozens and dozens of police vehicles and the area of West Florissant from Jennings to Ferguson was blocked off. Helicopters and tanks –as well as vehicles from a host of area departments – descended on West Florissant as looting and vandalism…

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Suppress Voting, Impeach Obama and Close HBCUs

Suppress Voting, Impeach Obama and Close HBCUs

By Peter Grear

Our campaign has sought to educate our communities to the point that they would organize and mobilize for a massive voter turnout for the November General Election and beyond. 

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Risky Situations Increase Women’s Anxiety, Hurt Their Performance Compared to Men

Risky Situations Increase Women’s Anxiety, Hurt Their Performance Compared to Men

Study author Susan R. Fisk

“On the surface, risky situations may not appear to be particularly disadvantageous to women, but these findings suggest otherwise,” 

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Voter Suppression: An Existential Threat to Democracy

Voter Suppression: An Existential Threat to Democracy

By Peter Grear

To properly understand where we are today, we must look to history, to Black Slavery.  Slavery has existed since the time of ancient civilizations and in its inception was based upon conquerors enslaving the conquered without regards to race.  

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Dorothy Buckhanan Wilson Installed as International President of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated

Dorothy Buckhanan Wilson Installed as International President of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated

Charlotte, NC (BlackPR.com)

Dorothy Buckhanan Wilson of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, a business executive, was installed as the 2014-2018 International President of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated (AKA)

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Nielsen Expands Communications Leadership Team with Key Media Relations Hire

Nielsen Expands Communications Leadership Team with Key Media Relations Hire

New York (BlackPR.com)

New York (BlackPR.com) -- Nielsen today announced that Andrew McCaskill has joined Nielsen as Senior Vice President, Corporate Communications. He will report to Chief Communications Officer Laura Nelson.

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Voter Suppression: It’s Mobilization Time

Voter Suppression: It’s Mobilization Time

Written by Peter Grear

With this article we will start detailing the ingredients of a revisable action plan that needs comments and revisions as we move toward the Tuesday, November 4, 2014 General Election.  

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Voter Suppression: NC Black Republican Advisory Board

Voter Suppression: NC Black Republican Advisory Board

Written by Peter Grear

Educate, Organize and Mobilize: I confess that I’m amazed. The Republican National Committee and the Republican Party of North Carolina announced last week that they have launched theNorth Carolina Black Advisory Board (BRAB) 

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Student Loans Cause 36 Million to Drop Out

Written by Charlene Crowell on 12 November 2012.

According to a new report, since 2009, 36 million Americans have attended college without earning a degree. Consequently, 850,000 individual private loans valued at more than $8 billion are now in default. With high and variable interest rates, these loans can cost students more in repayment than the actual cost of tuition. From 2005 to 2011 alone, private student loan debt more than doubled from $56 billion to $140 billion.

Among Black students who did not complete college, 69 percent cited high student loan debt as the reason. Soon after dropping out of school, these ex-students began struggling with repayment without the earning power a degree could have provided.

The report, The Student Debt Crisis, is authored by the Center for American Progress, an independent, nonpartisan institute.  The October report analyzes key factors in this looming financial crisis including changes in debt over time, the role lenders have played in the current crisis, who has incurred debt and factors contributing to the rise of student debt.

Most of the $1 trillion in combined federal and private student loan debt can be attributed to the  the increasing cost of college, the choice by state legislatures to make higher education a lesser priority in annual budgets, aggressive lending practices, and the recession cutting into the savings and earning power of families, the report stated.

“Students of color, particularly African-Americans are graduating with more student debt: 27 percent of black bachelor’s degree recipients had more than $30,500 in debt, compared to 16 percent for their white counterparts. And with Pell Grants facing cuts, many students of color who rely on these awards to help pay for school will be forced to borrow at even greater rates,”  the report observed.

Among students of color who graduate, the report found that 81 percent of Black students and 67 percent of Latino students typically have one hand holding a degree and the other clutching multiple student loans that need to be repaid. Among young African-American college graduates under the age of 34, more than half – 56 percent – have delayed purchasing a home.

Further, the lengthy time it now takes for most new graduates to find employment brings another dimension to student debt challenges. While nearly 9 percent of recent White graduates are unemployed; nearly 11 percent of Black graduates and 13 percent of Latinos are unemployed.

Financial pressures have forced many state and local governments to make painful cuts, including in education. This reduction in funding left many institutions of higher learning with fiscal challenges. Some school endowments also lost funds as a result of the recession. As a result, most schools turned to raising the cost of tuition to replace needed revenues. To make matters worse for students, many state-sponsored scholarships and grants were reduced, if not eliminated.

As costly as college has become, there are still valid reasons to pursue higher education. According to Wilbert van der Klaauw, an economist with the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, the disparities in lifetime earnings are stark. Americans with degrees can expect their collective earnings to reach $2.3 million. For people that attended college but never completed a degree the lifetime expected earnings drop to $1.5 million.

The report concluded, “The overlap of the recent recession and the continuing rise in student debt has created a perfect storm that is overwhelming many borrowers.” •

Charlene Crowell is a communications manager with the Center for Responsible Lending. She can be reached at: Charlene.crowell@responsiblelending.org. •

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