As part of Minneapolis College’s continuing efforts to become an anti-racist institution, on Nov. 17, 2020, Minneapolis College students and staff participated in an online workshop event entitled Humanize My Hoodie. Minneapolis College states that it is committed to providing “multicultural programming designed to support underrepresented student populations” and professional development learning opportunities and trainings for their workforce.
[[Read: Senate VP takes the lead to help make Minneapolis College an anti-racist campus]]
Professor Jason Sole and Andre Wright of Born Leaders United started the Humanize My Hoodie Project. On Feb. 26, 2012, 17-year-old Trayvon Martin was shot and killed. He was unarmed, but as a young black man wearing a hoodie, he was deemed a threat. Inspired by Martin’s death, on Aug. 14, 2017, Sole, then a criminal justice professor, decided to teach all his classes while wearing a hoodie. “I just wanted to do something different, something bold,” said Sole.
According to their website, “Humanize My Hoodie [is] a movement rooted in building power for racial equity.” Their Humanize My Hoodie Ally Workshop is designed to empower white allies to fight for racial equity in schools, corporations, and communities. To date, they’ve trained over 1,000 people.
Humanize My Hoodie training used to offer in-person workshops, but COVID-19 changed that. “When COVID hit we knew we couldn’t be in front of our people. We decided to put our Ally workshop online. Three hours of content. It took about 6 [to] 7 weeks [to put the workshop together].”
Sole said that Director of Ally Management, Seema G. Pothini played an important part in the growth of Humanize My Hoodie. Read about Pothini’s involvement with the company.
Anya Savvy is a pen name for a Minneapolis College student who works as a reporter for City College News. To contact Anya, please email them at anya at citycollegenews.com.