By EEW Magazine News Editors
Hampton University's African American business school dean, Sid Credle, stands firmly by his controversial ban on dreadlocks and cornrows first implemented in 2001. The ban applies specifically to male students enrolled in the school's 5-year MBA program who take the seminar class. They cannot wear dreadlocks or cornrows in class.
Credle’s decision is based on the belief that, in order to land a job in corporate America, looking the part is important. In response to those who disagree, the Business Dean touts his job placement record. "We've been very successful. We've placed more than 99 percent of the students who have graduated from this school, this program," said Credle.
Out of 160 students, all of them were placed in new jobs, except for one according to ABC 13 News.
Dean Credle even shoots down arguments that cornrows and dreadlocks are a rich part of African American culture and history. "I said when was it that cornrows and dreadlocks were a part of African American history?" Credle added, "I mean Charles drew didn't wear it, Muhammad Ali didn't wear it. Martin Luther King didn't wear it."
Some say suppressing others’ self-expressive personal style to force them to fit into mainstream definitions of what is normal and acceptable, is simply wrong. Others argue that he is helping to promote ignorance and bias against ethnic cultural expression.
But not everyone is against Dean Chedle. Some reinforce his stance, stating that the dominant corporate business culture mandates a certain appearance. They are of the mindset that says if ethnically diverse individuals wish to climb to the highest levels of success, they need to adhere to those standards.
What do you think?