Dr. Stephanie Akunvabey
Sound Business, Inc.'s
Inclusive Grassroot Cooperative
Dr. Stephanie Akunvabey, Researcher-IGC Framework
Vice President for Equity and Inclusion & CDO, Roger & Williams College
APRCHS/SBI Alumni '03 & IGC Development Consultant
Foundational to SBI is its Inclusive Grassroot Cooperative (IGC) organizational framework, which engages school administrators, staff, parents/guardians, alumni, and corporate and community partners to support students in public schools. Community, with the structure created by this IGC, helps define priorities for the school and its students; as in the case of A. Philip Randolph Campus High School – with whom SBI has had a 30-year and counting affiliation.
SBI has focused on offering academic enrichment, comprehensive college access services, theatre technology training, and performing arts opportunities, which were all aimed at preparing students attitudinally, socio-culturally, and academically for post-secondary education and careers. SBI’s partnership with Randolph High School in Harlem serves as a template for pilot programs in other public schools in the future. Specific to Randolph High School, SBI has provided solutions to address the needs of its diverse student population. Our students come from various neighborhoods across the New York City Metropolitan Area (including Washing Heights, Bronx, Bedford Stuyvesant, East New York, Jamaica, Harlem, Parkchester, Crotona Park, and Far Rockaway), and 85% of students come from families with limited networks and knowledge-base to create a strategic path forward that leads to continued upward growth and mobility.
SBI designed customized programs, which were implemented and operated as laboratory workshops, and has produced a series of best practices that have been used to create an education enhancement program for Randolph. SBI aims to be the agent that implements innovative and collaborative approaches to education – emphasizing the public’s role in public schools.
BRISTOL, R.I. – As part of their ongoing work to become a more diverse and inclusive institution, Roger Williams University named Stephanie Akunvabey, an equity and institutional change leader, to serve as the Vice President for Equity and Inclusion and Chief Diversity Officer.
“The guy who takes a chance, who walks the line between the known and unknown, who is unafraid of failure, will succeed.”