Part 2 By Tasion Kwamilele Dalvin Butler, an Oakland native and Castlemont High graduate is taking Washington, D.C. by storm. Butler’s now an eighteen-year-old freshman Government major at Georgetown University. In fall of 2009, Butler was elected to Georgetown’s College Academic Council, where he serves as the only African American representative. “By working with all interests groups on campus, our council amends the curriculum. We are currently trying to establish a business minor at the school,” said Butler. He admitted that Georgetown’s lack of diversity “took me out of my comfort zone and sometimes caused me to be quiet in his classes.” Now, after growing comfortable on campus, he is taking advantage of all that the institution offers. “Georgetown is one of the best schools to attend to learn about government and politics. I am interested in running for the Georgetown University Student Association (GUSA). GUSA writes legislation and confronts the different situations and issues that arise on the campus,” said Butler. For Butler, an issue of great importance on Georgetown’s campus is increasing diversity awareness and strengthening the ethnic studies department. “Georgetown is a predominantly white school. Their history is taught, ours is not and I want to change that. Not to say that their history is irrelevant, but African American Studies and other ethnic studies are desperately needed to be added to the curriculum,” said Butler. Along with his quickly attained Georgetown accomplishments, Butler keeps Oakland uppermost in his goals. He has created The ReInnovation Scholars Program, his own non-profit organization, to motivate and help Oakland and Richmond drop-outs return to school. The program will help the youth attain their GED as well as attend colleges, and vocational schools to receive trade skills training. Butler believes that by stressing the importance of education, he hopes his example will inspire Oakland’s youth to also become high achievers and return to their communities to help others. “Education is extremely vital not just in Oakland, but globally, in terms of being successful. I encourage all youth and adults to attend council meetings and OUSD Board of Education meetings to advocate for the necessary resources for our schools and communities,” said Butler who also is preparing himself for a future leadership role in Oakland “One day I plan to run for office in Oakland, potentially the mayoral position to shape my community. Oakland deserves, and significantly needs elected officials that are going to work effortlessly and solve serious issues to bring Oakland back to a flourishing safe community that it once was.” said Butler. The ReInnovation Scholars Program will begin accepting applications on August 1st, 2010. For more information visit http://thereinnovationscholarsprogram.org.
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