MSI PillarThe (4th) Pillar of Potential serve as a foundational pillar of our work.  The (4th) Pillar of Potential: Gender & Masculinity serves to reimagine traditional gender and masculine norms often associated with men of color (MOC) in higher education spaces.  We aim to provide programming that provide vulnerable spaces to discuss “What does it mean to be a man?”, “What does it mean to be a man of color?”, and “What does it mean to be a man of color attending CSUF located in Orange County, CA?”.  For far too long college men, especially MOC have been seduced by acceptance to live their lives through the lenses and expectations of what others believe represents ideal-manhood (Harris, 2015).  We hope to structure spaces where MOC can embrace the complexities among all men deconstructing our various intersections of race, gender, identity, culture, ethnicity, and privilege (Kimmel, & Messner, 2013). 
“I am invisible, understand, simply because people refuse to see me. Like the bodiless heads you see sometimes in circus sideshows, it is as though I have been surrounded by mirrors of hard, distorting glass. When they approach me they see only my surroundings, themselves or figments of their imagination, indeed, everything and anything except me.”  
― Ralph Ellison, Invisible Man (1947)  
Research explains that one in three Black and Latino males live in poverty, representing two of the highest rates of any youth group, three times more than their Asian and White counterparts.  (Howard & Associates, 2017).   As a result, Black (36%) and Latino (37%) males have the lowest third-grade reading proficiency rates of any students across the county and third-grade reading proficiency is often an important predictor of college academic success (Howard & Associates, 2017).  However, what educational spaces rarely do is explain how this data reveals itself in the form of impostor syndrome found in our undergraduate MOC especially our Black and Latino men (Yosso, 2005; Majors, Tyler, Peden, & Hall, 1994).  By deconstructing gender and identity from an anti-deficit lenses we are able to ensure an uplift spaces for our brothers and encourage them to realize they have within each other a community (Strayhorn & Tillman-Kelly, 2013; Harper, 2014).  As a result, we aim to increase visibility of MOC by maintaining a sense of belonging (Strayhorn, 2008), introducing and normalizing the values of brotherhood and bonding, and ultimately creating a counter narrative for all MOC.