"Monday night's NCAA men's basketball final will attract millions of viewers,"Alexandra Starr reported Monday for NPR's "Code Switch."
"One player on Duke's team — Sean Obi— hails from Nigeria. He's not the only African player who has enjoyed a successful hoops career in the U.S. The most famous is Nigerian Hakeem Olajuwon, who starred at the University of Houston before going on to a Hall of Fame career with the Houston Rockets and the Toronto Raptors.
"But not every African student who comes to the United States to play basketball has a positive experience. In the April issue of Harper's and over at WNYC, I reported on the story of four promising teenage Nigerian basketball players who were lured to the United States with the promise of college scholarships, but ended up with one homeless in New York City and the other three in foster care in Michigan.
"And last month, the Department of Homeland Security raided the Faith Baptist Christian Academy South in Ludowici, Ga., and discovered 30 young boys, mostly Dominican, who had been living in the campus gym, sleeping on the floor. Apparently students had been housed there since 2013. These boys also had been recruited to America with the promise of a high school education and a shot at a college scholarship. . . ."
Chris Ariens, TVNewser: Kentucky vs. Wisconsin is Most-Watched College Basketball Game Ever on Cable
- Alexandra Starr, WNYC-FM, New York: Trafficked to Play, Then Forgotten(March 17)
The Association of Opinion Journalists, formerly the National Conference of Editorial Writers, annually grants a Barry Bingham Sr. Fellowship — actually an award — "in recognition of an educator's outstanding efforts to encourage minority students in the field of journalism." The educator should be at the college level.
Nominations, now being accepted for the 2015 award, should consist of a statement about why you believe your nominee is deserving.
The final selection will be made by the AOJ Foundation board and announced in time for the annual symposium Nov.14-15 at the Poynter Institute in St. Petersburg, Fla., when the presentation will be made.
Since 2000, the recipient has been awarded an honorarium of $1,000 to be used to "further work in progress or begin a new project."
Past winners include James Hawkins, Florida A&M University (1990); Larry Kaggwa, Howard University (1992); Ben Holman, University of Maryland (1996); Linda Jones, Roosevelt University, Chicago (1998); Ramon Chavez, University of Colorado, Boulder (1999); Erna Smith, San Francisco State (2000); Joseph Selden, Penn State University (2001); Cheryl Smith, Paul Quinn College (2002); Rose Richard, Marquette University (2003); Leara D. Rhodes, University of Georgia (2004); Denny McAuliffe, University of Montana (2005); Pearl Stewart, Black College Wire (2006); Valerie White, Florida A&M University (2007); Phillip Dixon, Howard University (2008); Bruce DePyssler, North Carolina Central University (2009); Sree Sreenivasan, Columbia University (2010); Yvonne Latty, New York University (2011); Michelle Johnson, Boston University (2012); Vanessa Shelton, University of Iowa (2013); and William Drummond, University of California at Berkeley (2014).
Nominations may be emailed to Richard Prince, AOJ Diversity Committee chair, richardprince (at) hotmail.com. The deadline is May 22. Please use that address only for AOJ matters.