Wednesday, April 29, 2009


This post is not to start a debate about Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) vs. (Predominately White Institutions) PWIs. I feel like that argument has been beaten in the ground, spit on and burned. Anyway I decided to write this post to big up HBCU's (mine in particular) since they have been getting such negative press lately.

I remember as a high school senior I was torn between what schools I wanted to apply to. I had superb grades and participated in lots of extracurricular activities. I also had decent SAT scores. I had my mind set on attending a HBCU. My neighborhood consisted of mostly minorities. My high school was about 98% African American. So in my mind I saw no other option. Then my guidance counsel stepped in. She suggested that I think about applying to upper tier schools since I was smart and talented enough to get accepted (she really pressed Ivy league schools). In the end I applied to the University of MD, Howard University, North Carolina A&T, Temple University, George Washington University, Hampton University and the University of MD Eastern Shore (UMES). I got full academic scholarships to all of them with the exception of NC A&T (partial). My counselor was upset I didn't apply to Princeton. lol.

So now to my AP US History teacher, Mr. Shabazz. He was probably my favorite high school teacher. He really inspired me. He made us memorize the poems Excuses and Invictus and then recite it in front of the class. He was an alumnus of Hampton University and member of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc. Mr. Shabazz took me on a trip to Hampton University and on the way down he explained that I should go to Hampton so I could follow in the rich tradition of great scholars that went to Hampton. He also explained to me that Sigma was the only way to go right?. When he found out my top two choices were Hampton and UMES, he was like why would I want to go start my own tradition when I could be one of many in a long line of great scholars. What he didn't realize was that his argument was pushing me towards UMES.

So in the end I decided to attend the University of MD Eastern Shore. I'm so glad that I decided to go to UMES. I had the time of my life at UMES. I became a man there and it helped shape me into who I am today. I've also met lifelong friends there. Shout out to Club2300 (I wonder if we still have our Blackplanet page w/ the campus dimes of the week).

I'm an advocate for HBCU's and I urge anyone who feels like they would benefit from going should. I have never regretted not going to a higher tier school because I know once I earn my other degrees, my potential employers won't really care where I received my bachelor's degree. I also feel like I received a high quality education. In my opinion no matter how good apparently the school you went to, it won't matter if you don't have an aptitude to learn.


Reecie said...


V-S-U I love it I love it I love it!

hbcu pride over here!

Anonymous said...

haha...i remember black planet. lol

I am all about the HBCUs!!!! I couldn't be anymore proud of the fact that I received both my BS and MD from HBCUs. I think I'm gonna force my kids to go to HBCUs. There is definitely something about an HBCU experience that helps one grow into a stronger person.

Of course SPELMAN is the best HBCU ever created...sorry guys!

tutu said...

Hmm...I actually just became a fan in 2005 (when I started at Meharry). I had soooo many misconceptions about HBCUs prior to starting that I'm actually a bit embarrassed about them now. Now, I echo everyone's sentiments about HBCU pride. I appreciate a "majority" school but now realize how much more enriching my HBCU experience has been compared to any other school I've attended.

I'm loading up on my Meharry gear before I graduate so I can rep it hard for years to come.

p.s.: Boo Ellana.

Streetz said...


PWI on mineS. LOL.

Great argument on HBCU cred though. I always thought they had a great tradition. I should've visited at a HBCU for a semester....but thats what roadtrips are for right? lol

dc said...

Hawk Pride! Catch It!! lol

I loved my four years at UMES. I had actually never heard of HBCUs until my senior year of high school (outside of A Different World). I came to UMES for a college tour and loved it! I've made life long friends and don't regret for a moment not going to a PWI.

Tunde said...

reecie- yeah vsu is alright. :)

ellana- really spelman? be serious. this topic wasn't written to generate jokes. lol.

tutu- imagine if you would have went to an hbcu without the many demands of also attending medical school. you would have had that much more of an good and bad experience.

streetz- yeah i guess thats what roadtrips are for. to each their own in the end.

dc- let em know about hawk pride. they ain't ready. (taking back to basketball games doing my dance) U-U-U-U-U-M-M-M-M-M-E-E-E-E-E-S-S-S-S-S

Anonymous said...

HAHA!!! TUTU has the HBCU bug. Glad you had an opportunity to experience it and squash all ur "stereotypes"

TUNDE: You are such a hater. Stop fronting as if you don't know the truth!


I went to a Big Ten PWI. You're right, we can make arguments for both. Knowing what I know now, I still wouldn't change my decision, because I've learned so much from my school. I've got to do things, I never dreamed possible, and met a variety of people with different backgrounds, etc, etc, etc.

Oh trust me, it was a struggle, especially when I was the only black girl in class at times...or when there was racism directed at me, however those events made me stronger, and able to deal with it, as it happens in the workplace.

I don't knock HBCU's at all...I interned at Howard for a semester...I think wherever you go, as long as you graduate, learn, grow, and take all you can from the experience...then it’s all good!
(sorry for the long one :) )

Dave said...

Those were the days huh. Dang we had fun. Oh the stories...Most fun I had in my life.

Tunde said...

dave- sometimes i wish i could go back and re-live some of those club2300 days. the stories, man the stories. funny most involved alcohol. lol.

Anonymous said...

I am not a blogger but I love reading your blogs!!! Hawk Pride Catch it!!!! I went to UMES for 2 years then transferred to Howard! HU... YOU KNOW!!!! I love each school equally and I have learned so much from HBCUs. Since I graduated from an Howard (May 2009) I realized that I am going to miss the experiences from my black schools I cried as I left howard and I am really sad about it but I realized I guess God wants me to move on... but anyways big ups to HBCUs my kids are either going to Howard or UMES hands down!!!!!!!

bumight said...

As an HBCU product, i can proudly say the experience at an HBCU is unbeatable! of course u can argue for both sides, but bottomline is (like u said) when u get ur higher degree nobody cares where u got ur masters from and one thing that cant be taken away from u is your HBCU pride!

PS: im so glad u didnt go to Hampton,thats the fake HU urgh! lol