Campus Curlz Inc.,

"Hard work, Soft curlz"

Photo of Nia Wellman
3 5

Written by

Eligibility: Are you employed by T-Mobile or related to an employee of T-Mobile?

  • No

Eligibility: Date of Birth

December 31st,1996

Where are you located:

State 1: Hampton (23666)
State 2: Los Angeles (90095)
State 3: San Diego (92182)
State 4: Tallahassee (32307)
State 5: Philadelphia (19122)
State 6: Richmond (23220)
State 7: Clayton (30260)
State 8: Kennesaw (30144)
State 9: Storrs (06269)

Website or social media url(s) (optional):

https://www.campuscurlz.com
https://www.instagram.com/campuscurlz/
https://www.instagram.com/campuscurlz.hamptonu/
https://www.instagram.com/campuscurlz.famu/
https://www.instagram.com/campuscurlz.ucla/
https://www.instagram.com/campuscurlz.templeu/
https://www.instagram.com/campuscurlz.ksu/
https://www.instagram.com/campuscurlz.sdsu/
https://www.instagram.com/campuscurlz.vcu/
https://www.instagram.com/campuscurlz.uconn/
https://www.instagram.com/campuscurlz.claytonstate/

Date Started

January 7, 2017
Incorporated October 18, 2017

Project Stage: Select the description below that best applies to your approach.

  • Scaling (expanding impact to many new places or in many new ways)

1. Personal Journey: What’s the story behind why you decided to start this project? NOTE: All applications must include a 1 minute video that answers: “I am stepping up to make change because..."

As a darker-skinned Black woman with huge natural hair, and even larger goals and aspirations, often times I do not see myself portrayed in the media. As a little Black girl in today's society it can be extremely detrimental to one's self-esteem, self-worth and can even cause self-doubt when the only images you see on TV and social media are of individuals who do not look like you. Representation is essential more than ever, and I am determined to help alleviate issues I see in the Black community. Thus, the lack of representation in the media prompted me to create a safe place for like-minded individuals to be able to discuss issues they feel are plaguing their communities while offering helping hands to local non-profits, churches, and community centers nationwide.

2. The Problem: What problem are you helping to solve?

The specific problem I've been able to help eradicate has been the lack of resources, knowledge and support in Black and Brown communities on college campuses nationwide. I believe that this problem is still around due to the lack of understanding African Americans have on their heritage, thus resulting into a later self-awareness of one's self. This problem is especially prevalent in African Americans because we we're stripped of our heritage.

3. Your Solution: How are you planning to solve this problem? Share your specific approach.

We host fun, engaging and educational events and programs on campus and in our neighboring community to rewrite the Black narrative. We also raise awareness to inform our peers on the importance of healthy hair, the importance of being self-aware, how to efficiently navigate through professional spaces as Black and Brown individuals.
One of our nationwide programs Natural Hair Inside Out provides members and attendees with a complete guide on healthy hair tips, Black owned natural hair businesses as well as resources to make their natural hair journey easier. Another nationwide program includes Brand Like A Girl, a professional development, networking and women empowerment conference aimed to enhance members and attendee's knowledge on personal branding, entrepreneurship, social media etiquette, and work space readiness. Lastly, we host panel discussions focused on issues we have realized have plagued Black and Brown communities including colorism, financial literacy, child and teen development, college readiness, mental health, domestic violence, and more.

4. Example: Please walk us through a specific example of what happens when a person or group gets involved with your project.

Our executive board members receive hands on experience in event planning, social media content creation, social action planning and team building skills. Our members are offered a safe space where they feel comfortable to discuss issues they may feel like won't be heard or appreciated elsewhere. But most importantly, community members that we actively volunteer with and have formed true bonds and relationships with are offered a group of individuals in their corner to make their lives a bit sweeter.
For example, my favorite moment thus far has been volunteering at Transitions, a local domestic volunteer shelter in Hampton, Virginia. We hosted and event on campus to raise funds so that we could host a Halloween party for the children there. We were able to do hands on projects and experiments with the kids and get them excited out stem projects early on.

5. The X Factor: What is different about your project compared to other programs or solutions already out there?

What makes Campus Curlz Inc., different when compared to similar organizations is our ability to be unique, dynamic and progressive. Each campus that we are located on acquires their own unique issues that they are actively working on to make their local communities better. We are also reinforcing positive Black narratives through the use of social media, blog entries and YouTube videos. But most importantly, our thirst for spreading knowledge, learning more and overall being a resource to our peers and members of our communities.

6. Impact: How has your project made a difference so far?

Campus Curlz has had the pleasure of donating more than 500 items of toiletries to women and children in need. We have raised national awareness on domestic violence through the use of #CCGoesPurple. As well as collected more than 400 pounds of recyclables with our #CCGoesGreen recycling initiative. We also have raised donations so that more than 80 children that we volunteer with in Compton we able to attend screenings of Black Panther as well as receive books to improve their literacy.

 Also, we are officially on 10 college campuses nationwide but are currently in the process of being established on 30 more by the end of the summer. In total, all chapters have completed more than 3,000 hours of community service. We have also received awards from local NAACP chapters, student leader programs, and fellow organizations on campus.

7. What’s Next: What are your ideas for taking your project to the next level?

I plan on taking Campus Curlz Inc., to the next level in multiple ways. First, I want to be able to provide all members with the cohesive branding and marketing materials so that we are represented efficiently on all campuses. Secondly, by January 2019, I plan to create a regional conference aimed to provide all members with leadership, team building, and career readiness skills and resources as they prepare for the next big phase of their lives. I also plan to continue to collaborate with beauty and health companies on campaigns that provide free samples and live hair demonstrations to Black and Brown students where the resources are limited. Lastly, I want to be able to offer grants, scholarships and donations to our community partners.

8. Future Support: What are the resources needed to make your vision a reality?

Future support and resources to continue the advancement of Campus Curlz Inc., includes a team equipped with the tools to effectively do their specific job the best so that we are thorough in our mission. We also plan to expand our services and resources to more college campuses nationally and internationally. Also, within the next year it would be ideal to be housed in an office so that we are able to efficiently run our organization. But most importantly, we're in need of funding to provide our members and potential members with scholarships. We want to be able to help alleviate the common financial burden that college can come with.

9. Finances: If applicable, have you mobilized any of the following resources so far?

  • Friend support
  • Family support
  • Sales
  • Mentors/advisors

10. Ripple Effect: Please share some ideas of how you could partner with other changemakers or involve other young people as leaders in making a difference.

The next big project that I would love for more causes to get involved in is providing members of Flint, Michigan with fresh water. Since 2014, citizens have been living with lead infested water and have barely been offered remedies from their state. Fresh water is a basic human necessity that this individuals have been stripped of and I believe that we can all work towards helping them alleviate this issue by donating funds and water cases and purifiers to.

Help Us Support Diversity! Part 1 [optional] Which of the following categories do you identify with?

  • Black or African American (for example: African American, Jamaican, Haitian, Nigerian, Ethiopian, Somalian, etc) (8)

Help Us Support Diversity! Part 2 [optional] Do you identify as part of any of the following underrepresented communities?

  • Communities of color
  • Low-income community
  • LGBTQ community

How did you hear about this challenge?

  • Social media

Referral: If you discovered the Challenge thanks to an organization or person other than Ashoka or T-Mobile, who was it?

@Jayversace
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Team (2)

Nia's profile
Ariane's profile
Ariane Owens

Role added on team:

"Ariane Owens currently serves at the 2018-2019 2nd Curl Ambassador (Vice President) at the Hampton University Chapter. Ariane has recently served as the Events Chair, where she was ahead of programming and campus events. She also works closely with me to ensure that day-to-day duties are completed and is training under me to be the chapter President once I have graduated."

This inspired (1)

In the Streetz

3 comments

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Photo of Tiana
Team

Nia! This is awesome. This is important and very essential especially for African American students on PWI campuses. We have been systematically trained to believe that our hair and skin isn't beautiful and this id a great start to eliminating these ideations. I absolutely love this and would love to see this on more college campuses in NC!

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