Black Achievement Success and Engagement

The Black Achievement, Success and Engagement Initiative [BASE] provides a foundation for students to grow, learn, discover and thrive. By offering high-impact, academic and extracurricular programs that center on the unique and yet varied experiences of students of African descent, BASE equips students with the knowledge, resources, skills and support necessary to turn their dreams into reality.

USF's mission calls us to identify ways to alleviate the marginalization and isolation experienced by black students and ensure their academic and co-curricular success. The Black Achievement Success and Engagement Program aims to do just that by building a more accessible, inclusive, and empowering campus for our black students.

— Julie Orio, Vice President, Student Life


  • Recruit and retain more Black students
  • Close the graduation rate gap between Black students and their peers
  • Strengthen the relationships of Black students with their peers, faculty, staff, alumni, and administrators
  • Strengthen the engagement of Black students at the university and in the Bay Area community
  • Create pathways for Black students to move through this university and into rich and rewarding careers

BASE Components

Black Scholars Program

The Black Scholars Program is a rigorous and competitive academic program, grounded in Jesuit values, that seeks to provide high-achieving Black students with the resources, skills, and support necessary to achieve personal and professional excellence.

More about the Black Scholars Program

Marshall-Riley Living Learning Community

The Marshall-Riley Living Learning Community offers a fun and engaging learning environment for freshman and sophomore students who share an interest in the historical, intellectual, and political traditions of Black Americans, and want to engage more deeply with the local Bay Area Black community through service-learning coursework.


Black Resource Center

The Black Resource Center provides a safe, supportive space for undergraduate and graduate students of African descent to connect with each other to receive academic, spiritual, mentoring, and emotional support services.