LEXINGTON, Ky. — Transylvania University is now home to a brand-new beauty supply vending machine that’s backed by the school’s Diversity and Inclusion department.
Krissalyn Love, Transylvania University’s director of diversity, equity and inclusion, said it has become a campus staple. She said it hopes it can serve as a one-stop shop toward comfort for the school’s Black students.
Love said the school has a small percentage of Black students.
“It’s so good to have visual representation that inclusion matters,” Love said. “Inclusion is essential to how they interact in the classroom and how they perform in the classroom.”
She said even the “small things” make a big difference for Black students on campus.
“…’Cause to the outside [population], hair could be insignificant, but one thing in particular that I know Black students really care about is how to care for their hair,” Love said.
The vending machine — which includes hair products, makeup, accessories and other potential needs — is located in the school’s community center.
Melanie Higgins Day is a central Kentucky natural hair specialist. She created the vending machine with students in mind.
“Melanie was super mindful of [making] sure the pricing was gonna be economically savvy for the students,” Love said. “She actually underpriced [products in the vending machine].”
Higgins Day restocks the vending machine with new products, too. She takes students’ buying habits into consideration and strives to include items they need or want to see.
Aside from having their needs met, Love said she hopes this vending machine inspires Black students to take on their own business ventures and embrace entrepreneurial growth.