Photo of a woman presenting during a Black student networking meeting in Fall 2019.

Friday, April 3, 2020

Northeastern Illinois University’s Black Student Success Committee has created the Black Student Professional Member Fees Initiative, which will accept applications through May 15, or until the funds are exhausted.

The goal of this initiative is to help Black-identified Northeastern students receive funding to cover a year-long membership fee to a professional organization that supports Black-identified people.

“Providing access to professional development opportunities, potential mentors and other career-related resources through becoming a student member of a professional association will impact our students in a timely manner during their academic career at NEIU but hopefully for a lifetime," said Lynette Correa-Velez, Assistant Director of Career Development. “The Black Student Professional Member Fees Initiative is important because it is a way to eliminate barriers to success for career and internship opportunities for our Black-identified undergraduate and graduate students at NEIU. Personally, I wanted an innovative way that would further assist our Black-identified students in a transformational, rather than transactional, manner.”

Some examples of memberships that fees can be applied to include student memberships to The Association of Black Psychologists, the American Association of Blacks in Energy (AABE), and the National Association of African Americans in Human Resources.

“This fund is important and will be impactful because we want our students to experience success beyond NEIU,” said Tim Mays, Assistant Director of Black Student Success for the Angelina Pedroso Center for Diversity and Intercultural Affairs. “We have to support and encourage students to walk through as many doors as possible to accomplish their goals.”

If a student is interested in applying to receive funding through this initiative, they must schedule a virtual appointment with Mays at If anyone would like to contribute to this initiative, they may also contact Mays.