On September 1, 1978, I assumed responsibility for what was then known as the Office of Minority Student Programs at Boston College. The charge given to me was to alter an embarrassingly high attrition rate of 83 percent for a target group of black and Latino students who had been identified by the university's Admissions Office as having high levels of motivation and potential, but who would require assistance if they were to succeed at the university.

Over the course of the past sixteen years, a great deal has transpired at Boston College. An important change was made in the name of the office. Through the vision of two students acting as ambassadors on behalf of their fellow students who viewed the term minority as pejorative, and, therefore, used the services of our office sparingly, the name of the office was changed to the Office of AHANA Student Programs. The term AHANA is an acronym for African American, Hispanic, Asian, and Native American. The term is being used by more than thirty colleges and universities, school districts, clubs, and organizations throughout the United States.


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