VSU to make announcement on initiative focusing on African-American political leadership

New VSU institute focuses on increasing African-American political leadership

PETERSBURG, Va. (WWBT) - Virginia State University made a big announcement for a new initiative that focuses on increasing African-American political leadership across the state.

It’s called the John Mercer Langston Institute for African Americans, and it will encourage young black students to get into politics, as well as teaching them the in’s and out’s. A group of 25 students is expected to enroll during the early 20-21 school year and will be taught how to effectively hold office.

Many of the details of how this program will work are still being figured out, but the institute has already rolled out a “Black Virginia Voters Poll,” aimed at highlighting the needs of Black Virginians.

“It will help us figure out feelings and perceptions, but also give us a chance to see how things can be improved upon,” said Dr. Wes Bellamy, Chair of VSU’s Department of Political Science. “It will ask a series of questions, that will give us more of an understanding, and we can work from there.”

The poll is set to be completed before Election Day on Nov. 3.

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