Who We Are
All Student U students know why we exist: As a result of racial inequity and childhood poverty, low-income and potential first-generation college students are less likely to succeed within the education system in Durham and around the country. At Student U, we know that all of us are brilliant and powerful, but we also know that we will face obstacles as we navigate a system and society that does not empower us all to thrive. Student U students, teachers, and leaders are always looking for new, and exciting ways to create modern learning environments that empower us to take control of our education, in the face of racism, intergenerational poverty, and other barriers to success.
Why This Matters
As 21st century learners, technology is being incorporated into our public-school system, making it a necessary part of homework, communication with our teachers, and the complete educational experience. For Student U students, the same institutional obstacles to educational success exist in the digital world. According to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, while more households than ever before have internet access, access to Internet-enabled devices in the home is a substantial barrier to Internet use for households with a lower-income (Anderson, 2007). Additionally, households with a lower income are more likely to solely rely on smartphones for internet access than higher income households (File and Ryan, 2007). This year, Student U raised $11,000,000 to purchase, renovate, and remediate the W.G. Pearson Center (WGPC) in downtown Durham.
Invest In Us
The money we raise on CrowdRise will fund the operations for the organization we have called home for the last decade. By investing in Student U, you are investing in us and demonstrating your belief in our power to change the world. These funds will go directly towards the logistics and operation that will make The Brilliance Lab possible. Included are the utility costs of W.G. Pearson, the building in which The Brilliance Lab will be housed, platform subscriptions to online donation software, and supplies for Student U middle school and high school programming which are all necessary to support the daily operations of the building.
We request A Community Thrives grant to fill the 55,000 square ft building with the programming and the people that will expand our impact to move our city closer to our ultimate vision of a Durham where all kids can succeed. Student U students joined together to create the vision for The Brilliance Lab. Located at the newly-purchased W. G. Pearson Center, The Brilliance Lab will be a state-of-the art space that will nurture creativity, collaboration, and innovation. The Brilliance Lab—a space where technology and empowerment merge— will create an environment in which we can approach science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) with the mindset of problem solvers, inventors, and entrepreneurs. This space gives us the information and orientation we need to become self-directed learners and solve local challenges. This new learning environment will link new pedagogies and space that is needed to support us as we continue to develop into change agents. The Brilliance Lab will cultivate a space that allows innovation, creativity, and learning to meld to create a stronger and more equitable Durham.