The Baobab Project

“Wisdom is like a baobab tree; no one individual can embrace it” ~ African Proverb

In 2021 the Black Student Support Office launched a podcast series to amplify the Black perspectives at Mount Saint Vincent University. “The series is called the Baobab Project in recognition of the wisdom members of the African/Black community use to help create a stronger MSVU community. Under the ‘branches of the baobab tree’ we discuss lived experiences that help to build a stronger MSVU community for all.”

Season One explores the topics such of  Black hair, accessibility, food, and much more. The Black Student Support Office plans to commence recording episodes for Season Two in 2023. A number of MSVU students and staff have worked on these podcast over the past year and we welcome you to get involved—please contact for more information on the podcast series and how you can participate.

Access the podcast episodes via YouTube.

Season 1

Listen to Episode 1

This episode examines the personal experience of several Black students at Mount Saint Vincent University. Students talked about their personal experiences with professors, peers, and staff as they attempted to navigate through their academic careers. Please listen to our other episodes on various topics and capture the lived experiences of people of African descent in our community.

Listen to Episode 2

This episode takes us deep into the lived experiences of Black people in our community. It examines the “All Lives Matter” ideology and presents an understanding of the Black Lives Matter movement from an Africentric perspective. We interviewed some community members actively involved in the Black Lives Matter movement and/or activism.

Listen to Episode 3

In this episode, we talked to a student, an MSVU staff and two external community members who provided an insight into what it is like to navigate various spaces lacking resources for all to access. This episode presents several intersectional issues, including race, religion and gender. It also sheds light on discrimination occurring within the disabled community.

Listen to Episode 4

Join two experts, students, and an audience as we discuss Black hair. Panel members discussed hair types, social and cultural issues, stereotypes, and other personal experiences they have had in the past. Listen to the expert advice on longstanding questions about Black hair.

Listen to Episode 5

We brought two local restaurant owners and several Foodies into the space to discuss the importance of familiar food. Participants discussed food preparation styles similarities and differences and discussed the concept of soul food in the Black community.

Listen to Episode 6

This was an exciting journey across campus to learn the various techniques used by faculty, staff and students to pronounce unfamiliar names. All members contributed significantly to the knowledge generated.

Listen to Episode 7

This episode examines racism through the lens of Africentricity and Critical Race Theory. Participants discussed personal experiences and presented simple solutions to support affected members of our community.

Listen to Episode 8

What do you get when you mix hot chocolate mint tea and the cold winter? Minter, of course! This episode examines some simple activities used in the past to get through a Nova Scotia winter.


Listen to Episode 9

This episode examines the knowledge of elders in our community. Panel members discussed some of the wisdom they received and what it meant to them then and now. Go on, discuss some of the old sayings with your friends.

Listen to Episode 10

This episode opens the conversation about the need for support for Black students conducting research at Mount Saint Vincent University. We took the perspective that many Black students were discouraged from conducting research for one reason or another and investigated some solutions to provide additional support through this podcast. In the end, a support group for Black students in research was created at MSVU.

Listen to Episode 11

This episode examines the responsibilities of allies from different perspectives. They provide first-hand experiences of those needing support from allies and what the relationship should look like.

Listen to Episode 12

We discussed the #2 Construction Battalion as part of the 2022 African Heritage Month celebration at Mount Saint Vincent University. This episode discusses the personal relationship between a daughter and her late father, a Battalion member. It also examines the lived experiences of the men drafted and the communities they represent.

Listen to Episode 13

The host and panel addressed how females are expected to perform socially sanctioned roles in this episode. The host examined how these labels influenced her life experiences as a white settler. “I have been told for many years I think like a man…”

Listen to Episode 14

After conducting a survey to understand black students’ experiences during the COVID-19 pandemic, we brought several expert panelists to discuss the results further. Panelists shared their personal experiences and provided solutions to cope with the stresses and ever-changing NS public health policies.

Listen to Episode 15

Here, we discuss why we celebrate African heritage month in Canada with the Black Student Advisor at Mount Saint Vincent University. We further discussed what the African Heritage Month celebration means to the community and who should participate in the celebration.

Listen to Episode 16

This episode explores the relationship between gardening and relationship building in the community. Learn about some of the skill sets panel members possess and how they could use that to form lifelong relationships within the community.

Listen to Episode 17

Did you know advisors were people and not robots? We brought several advisors into a room and filled it with laughter as they discussed their experiences in the workplace and work-life balance. This is a fun-filled episode, and you must listen to the end. Note: this is the edited version.

Season 2 is coming soon!