ALANA Student Center

  • Serves as an information clearing house and resource center, giving ALANA* students easy and direct access to important information
  • Provides ALANA students with tools essential for their success on and off campus
  • Assists ALANA students in the resolution of academic and personal problems
  • Serves as a "bridge," connecting ALANA students to other members of the college and the community-at-large
  • Provides a place for ALANA students to share and discuss experiences, and to validate or invalidate the interpretation of those experiences
  • Articulates the Jesuit commitment to ALANA students in higher education

*African American, Latino/a American, Asian American & Native American

ALANA: What Does It Mean?

"The term AHANA [ALANA] is not degrading, inaccurate, or stereotypical. It is creative, unique, and symbolic of pride. AHANA [ALANA] was not developed to segregate its members from the remainder of the Campus community. It was developed to unite its members for the good of all and to inspire cultural awareness and destroy the void among students of different racial backgrounds. We do not want to feel 'minor'."

The above words and feelings were presented to the Boston College Board of Trustees [in 1978] by several undergraduate students arguing that "minority" was an offensive and unacceptable term when applied to people of color. Dr. Donald Brown, director of the Office of AHANA Student Programs at Boston College, developed the acronym AHANA. At Canisius College, with the substitution of "Latino/a" for Hispanic, AHANA became ALANA. This change resulted from the fact that many people consider themselves Latino/a rather than Hispanic.

To date, over 50 American colleges and universities have adopted the AHANA or ALANA acronym.

Taken from Multicultural Programs', Student Success Guide, Fifth Edition. Research gathered from Black Issues in Higher Education, Article by Dr. Donald Brown, April 1989.