Another Light on the Hill Black Students at Tufts

Anita Griffey

Anita Griffey originally was from Atlanta, Georgia. Before she came to Tufts, Griffey primarily supported her mother at home, by working two jobs while in high school. Though Griffey was admitted to Tufts for the fall of 1986, she deferred her enrollment for a semester, in order to continue working to pay for her tuition.

On campus, Griffey was very involved in extracurriculars. Griffey was an active member of the Delta Sigma Theta Sorority. Griffey also held an active place on campus analyzing and criticizing race relations on campus; Griffey served as President in the African American Society, and co-authored a regular column in the Tufts Daily alongside Sandi McLendon, titled “The Other Side.” This column touched on experiences on Tufts campus as they were perceived by the “non-status quo" - marginalized voices on campus.

Griffey passed away on April 21, 1990, only a month away from her senior graduation. Friends had mentioned that she had been “doubling up” on classes, in order to graduate on time with the rest of her peers. She and a friend from Boston University hit two telephone poles on College Ave., just past Cousens Gymnasium. After her death, there was an outpouring of support and grief on campus, with many people referencing her active role on campus and her mentoring of students. A scholarship was established in her name by Griffey’s chapter of Delta Sigma Theta; additionally, in 2015 after more evidence was found about Griffey’s soror Lena Bruce, a summer internship fund was created to support students in unpaid internships.

Biography written and researched by Peter Lam


Amladi, Divya. "A Career Launchpad." Tufts Now. 23 January 2017.

Newman, Stephen, and Colin Woodard. "President of the African American Society killed in an auto accident." The Tufts Daily. 23 April 1990.