Why From the Rough is great for historical societies and public historical and cultural programs

From the Rough is one of a handful of films, the others being Drumline and Stomp the Yard that are set at a historically black college and university. It addresses both the challenge these schools, created as an alternative college education system during the Jim Crow era, face in remaining relevant and the opportunity a resourceful school can create by redefining its mission to be globally diverse. The film provides a number of opportunities to understand better the unique role the HBCUs play in American sports and African American life.

Central Theme:

The HBCUs generally, and Tennessee State in particular, have been the point of entry for many underprivileged African Americans and other young people to get a college education in a more nurturing environment. The TSU golf team and its Coach, Catana Starks, are a microcosm of the broad and proud tradition of the HBCUs, as well as the challenges they have in remaining relevant.

How to Use the Film

The film celebrates the way in which the 105 HBCUs offer a uniquely nurturing experience for young people, usually, but not always, African Americans.  It is a great catalyst and facilitator for policymakers, the associations of HBCUs, and other stakeholders who want to devise or refine a set of strategies for development and marketing of these great institutions.

The film is also great for libraries and historical societies that want to celebrate trailblazers among African American educators and sports figures, as well as the unique role of the HBCUs in African American higher education.