The Student African American Brothers (SAAB) is moving their national headquarters from the Buckeye State to Southwest Missouri.
The currently Toledo, Ohio based organization will be moving to Springfield, Missouri State President Clif Smart announced at a press conference today. The organization will have offices from Missouri State University and funding support from the Community Foundation of the Ozarks.
SAAB is focused on “providing systems to support young men of color who embark upon and complete post-secondary education” according to their website. The reason for their focus is:
- A college education is increasingly necessary for family-sustaining employment. Yet, the percentage of Black and Latino males holding a bachelors degree or higher is 16% and 12% respectively, as compared with 32% for their White counterparts.
- Historically, our society has focused on providing financial support in order to advance equity in college access and post-secondary attainment. Increasingly, we recognize this is not enough. There is a critical need to provide the encouragement, guidance, and social support needed to define, pursue and complete higher education objectives.
Community Foundation of the Ozarks has been a supporter of the organization for several years, and they teamed with the Missouri Scholarship and Loan Foundation to provide the funding for the group to relocate to Springfield.
“This is a home run for our community that will enhance our continued growth,” Community Foundation of the Ozarks Chair Abe McGull said. “SAAB’s nfluence upon marginalized and nontraditional students will assist those individuals reach their fullest potential that will produce tremendous dividends for our region. This has been years in the making and a deliberate process spearheaded by MSU and progressive organizations of our community such as CFO, CPO, and UWO that understand when we educate and cultivate a culture of excellence we make our communities stronger, safer and more prosperous. SAAB will take our community from eminence to preeminence!”