Black Futures

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Black Futures stands as an innovative frontline force for George Brown College's Black community. Our work is aimed at eradicating anti-Black racism, championing transformation, and fostering an inclusive environment for Black students, staff, faculty and allies within GBC.

Our mission is to nurture and empower the Black community at GBC with intentional connections, relationships and support systems. We seek to eradicate the systemic barriers that have long harmed Black individuals in higher education settings. We do this by establishing and sustaining Black-centric programs, community spaces, initiatives and tools while always drawing upon the diverse intersectional richness within our community and embracing the expansive identity of Blackness. Black Futures directly supports and contributes to GBC's Strategy 2026, Anti-Racism Action Plan, and the Scarborough Charter

Black Futures will implement our activities through a phased approach, operating across two key focus areas. The first is dedicated to academic research and programming, while the second centres on empowering the community through initiatives specifically designed to promote Black flourishing. 

Black Futures Month 2024

Jennifer Grant, Dr. Mary Anne Chambers, Mary Ola, and Dr. Morris Anthony Beckford

Throughout Black Futures Month 2024, we highlighted the importance of Black history, specifically Canadian Black history.  

“Our Black Futures Month programming throughout February was a tangible result of the college's unwavering commitment to centre and uplift Black individuals,” Ola said. “The varied array of events offered serves as a testament to our collective efforts, providing a snapshot of how Black Futures Initiatives will be woven into the fabric of our institution, ensuring sustained support and flourishing for the Black community.” 

This year, we were proud to host renowned Canadian artist, activist, and academic d'bi young anitafrika, University of Guelph Chancellor and former Ontario cabinet minister and MPP Dr. Mary Anne Chambers, and Canadian business leader, philanthropist and Dragon's Den investor Wes Hall for events. 

Highlights of Black Futures Month 2024

Black Futures Initiatives hosted a wide range of events for the George Brown College community in collaboration with other college departments, including Alumni Relations, the Black Student Success Network (BSSN), the Centre for Hospitality and Culinary Arts, and others.

Black Futures Month 2024 image gallery

Student, employee and alumni profiles

Assistant Coach Marlon Greene (centre) with men's basketball team coaching staff

Marlon Greene is an assistant coach for George Brown's men's basketball team. "What we're doing right now is historic," he says. The team is headed to the OCAA championships on March 2-4, 2023.

Wes Hall speaking into a hand held mic

BlackNorth Initiative Founder and Dragon's Den investor Wes Hall shares how he overcame a very difficult childhood to rise to incredible heights in Canadian business in his 2024 book, No Bootstraps When You're Barefoot.

Rok Gueye is proof that if you have a dream, stick to it! She launched her dream career as a carpenter more than 20 years after graduating from the Construction Engineering Technician program. Now, she's an advocate for the skilled trades.

Graphic design graduate Dymika Harte

The 2018 Graphic Design program grad is the founder and creative director of UNSGND, a female-powered creative agency with an expanding client base. She created a female-centred business after noticing male-dominated board rooms during her college work placements.  

Mary Ola is the Senior Manager of Black Futures Initiatives. She's building out the bigger vision of creating safe spaces for Black students, employees and faculty that promote growth and Black flourishing. 

Child and Youth Care alumna Vivene Roberts

Vivene Roberts never stops moving to ensure the needs of marginalized children and youth in foster care are being met. The 1993 Child and Youth Care grad runs a foster care agency, recently opened a foster care group home, and continually creates innovative new programming and services.

Brianna Samuels McLaughlin on the soccer pitch with opposing player

The 2022-23 captain of the varsity women's soccer team has impressive stats (OCAA All-Star x2), but it's her fellow players' success and their positive team dynamic she wants to celebrate.

Theatre Arts - Performance grad Tymika Tafari's career kicked into high gear in 2020/21 and her star continues to rise. Now, she's looking at opportunities in the U.S. after landing a supporting role in the Roku series Slip, from executive producer Dakota Johnson.

Financial services executive, chef and accessible education advocate Ray Williams is passionate about creating opportunities for others.