Crockett-Lumumba Scholars

The Crockett-Lumumba Scholars (CLS) program is a four-year student success program designed to help students better understand themselves, their cultural inheritance and social responsibilities by grounding them in the concept of "Harambee" a term and principle that emerged out of the Kenyan liberation struggle that means, "all pull together."

Crockett-Lumumba Scholars logo featuring a red, black and green colored fistIt's our belief that a collective focus, emphasis on community building and mentorship, culturally relevant education, commitment to academic excellence and social action will create a generation of graduates who will carry forward the struggle for Black self-determination and social and economic justice on and off campus for decades to come.

To quote Detroit's own General Baker Jr., our program "seeks to turn thinkers into fighters and fighters into thinkers." Unlike other student success programs, Crockett-Lumumba Scholars is specifically designed for students who view education as a pathway to liberation and are committed to fighting against structural racism, challenging those in power, causing "good trouble" and radically transforming our society. All students who share these commitments regardless of major are encouraged to join.

Program benefits

  • A Minor in African American Studies
  • Part-time jobs as tutors and academic mentors for DPS students
  • A residential summer enrichment program designed to help students make a successful transition to college life and learning
  • Culturally relevant courses, instruction and programming
  • Cohort-based scheduling to build relationships and community
  • Social programming and events
  • Peer, professional and faculty mentorship and advising
  • Service-learning and grassroots-oriented internships
  • Undergraduate research symposium
  • Program-based study abroad experience in Africa, Brazil or the Caribbean

Students who complete the program will receive a Minor in African American Studies. Alternatively, students can participate for a year or two if they choose, completing a series of prerequisites. However, they will not earn a minor without completing the program.

Apply to the Crockett-Lumumba Scholars

About the program

  • Why Crockett-Lumumba Scholars?

    The Crockett/Lumumba Scholars program is named after three African-American scholars and activists with deep ties to the city of Detroit who embraced higher education and used the skills they acquired to aid in the struggle for Black liberation and social justice.

    Dr. Ethelene Crocket was the first board-certified African-American woman OB/GYN in the state of Michigan. She went on to direct the Detroit Maternal Infant Care project and later became the first African-American woman to lead the American Lung Association. Her husband, George Crockett Jr., worked for decades as a civil rights and labor attorney, recorders' court judg, and congressperson. In the late 1960s, Crockett Jr. drew the ire of the Detroit Police Department (DPD) and the Detroit Police Officers Association after they had arrested all 142 attendees of the Republic of New Afrika's (RNA) second national convention at New Bethel Baptist Church in Detroit. Crockett ordered the release of everyone who had been wrongfully detained without any evidence of criminal activity, including men, women and children, sparking a backlash that united the Black activist community in what was known as "The Black United Front."

    Around the same time, Chokwe Lumumba (then Edwin Tallaferro) had just completed his undergraduate studies at Kalamazoo College. Lumumba returned to Detroit, joined the RNA and attended Wayne State University's Law School, graduating first in his class in 1975. Lumumba served as the second vice president of RNA, represented Black liberation movement activists and political prisoners in court, became a leading figure in the reparation movement, organized the Malcolm X Grassroots Movement and became the first Black mayor of Jackson, MS before his untimely death in 2014.

  • Incentives

    The CLS program will implement graduated funding to ensure programmatic continuity while rewarding our students for their participation, hard work and success. We will also offer part-time jobs for our students, who will be paid $15/hour for tutoring and mentoring students in DPS.

    • Year 1: $1,000
    • Year 2: $2,000
    • Year 3: $3,000
    • Year 4: $4,000 + study abroad experience
  • Eligibility

    The CLS program is open to incoming first-year students of all majors.

    Apply to the Crockett-Lumumba Scholars

  • Curriculum
    Year Course Credits Semester
    1 AFS 1010: Intro to African American Studies (DEI, SI) 3 Fall
    1 AFS 2210: Black Social and Political Thought (CI, DEI, SI) 4 Winter
    2 AFS/HIS 2350: Black Detroit (DEI) 3 Fall
    2 or AFS/LLAS 2250: Afro-Latino/a History and Culture 3 Winter
    3 AFS 3420: Pan Africanism: Politics of the Black Diaspora (GLI) 4 Fall
    3 AFS 5991: Field Work in the Black Community (Writing Intensive Comp.) 3-8 Winter
    4 AFS 6990: Directed Study (Study Abroad in Africa, Brazil or the Caribbean) 3 Spring


Professor David Goldberg, CLS director,