The Citizens League‘s Capitol Pathways program places college students of color from around the state with government offices, nonprofits and lobbying firms where they can build experience and relationships in Minnesota politics. Three Metropolitan State students have been chosen to participate.
David “Coach DC” Collier has two semesters left at Metro State to complete his individualized studies degree with an emphasis in youth development leadership/urban psychology. He works for the Family Partnership as the BeMore Mentor project coordinator on a campaign designed to end violence against women and children as it pertains to African American men. Collier is also the head coach of the junior varsity basketball team at DeLaSalle High School, and has more than 15 years of youth programming and coaching experience. He founded Twin Cities PACE, a nonprofit dedicated to using basketball skill development as a means to encourage academic excellence and goal achievement among disenfranchised youth.
Collier received his associate of arts with honors from Minneapolis Community and Technical College and was inducted into Phi Theta Kappa for achieving a 4.0 GPA and his community involvement. Collier will complete the prerequisites for the community psychology graduate program after the summer semester, but is still looking into other graduate school options. His internship site is Fresh Energy.
Khalid Dayib is pursuing a degree in accounting with a minor in technical communications. For the past six months, he has worked for Ramsey County as a finance and accounting intern to the chief financial officer and the deputy budget director. Before that he worked as an Urban Scholar intern for the city of Minneapolis’ finance department. As an Urban Scholar, he participated in leadership development training and self-discovery workshops facilitated by experts in the field. Dayib developed public speaking and communication skills with Toastmasters International, taking part in roundtables and networking events with organization leaders and community engagement projects.
Most recently, he was invited to be a speaker at the 2015 Metropolitan State‘s Annual Scholarship event to accept the Kopp Presidential/Sit Academic scholarship as well as the Forrest W. King Scholarship. His Capitol Pathways internship site is Minnesota Environmental Partnership.
Hamza Ali studies accounting at Normandale Community College and will be attending Metro State fall 2016. He is a Somali American and came to this country when he was 8 years old. Ali is a first-generation college student and has five younger siblings who look to him as their role model. Moving from a war-torn country to America, life became harder for Ali, but his parents taught him the importance of education and how vital it was to take advantage of the opportunities that were provided. In his near future he sees himself as a small business owner who is well connected with the community he serves. Ali also wants to open a nonprofit organization to help first-generation students overcome some of the challenges that they face. His internship site is in the Minnesota Council of Nonprofits.
The Capitol Pathways program was created to strengthen Minnesota government by making it more representative of the state’s population. Despite growing diversity throughout Minnesota, people of color are largely absent from legislative decision making in the state. For more information, including intern bios and a complete list of participating organizations, visit this link.