Students accepted into colleges at HBCU Caravan at BC
Posted By: Sofía Montiel on January 31, 2023 |
Theresa Price, founder of National College Resources Foundation, shouted into a microphone, announcing that five students from Bakersfield had been accepted into a Historically Black College or University with some scholarship money.
It almost seemed similar to an Oprah Winfrey Show spoof: You get a scholarship! And you get a scholarship!
But this was no joke.
Several students were accepted on the spot with scholarship money during Monday’s HBCU Caravan at Bakersfield College’s Renegade Ballroom on the third floor of the Campus Center. Representatives from 29 HBCUs were promoting their schools and recruiting BC students as well as local high school students.
Logan Greene, Max McDonald, Nathan Johnson, Jessy Owens and Malyshia Andrews from Highland High School’s Black Student Union together totaled more than $85,000 in scholarships.
McDonald said he scanned barcodes to apply to Philander Smith College, a private HBCU in Little Rock, Ark., and Morgan State University, a public HBCU in Baltimore, and was accepted into both. Application fees were waived at the event.
“It feels great to have some options,” McDonald said. “If it’s Philander, I want to study criminal justice. At Morgan, it’ll be mathematics.”
Price, who said the National College Resources Foundation also helps host the Black College Expo, said it’s important to have events such as the HBCU Caravan. NCRF is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to curtail the high school dropout rate and increase enrollment to a degree and certificate program among at-risk, underrepresented, low-resource students, Price said.
“We need to empower our young people,” Price said.
“We have to make sure our young people are ready for their next steps when they leave high school or transfer from college.”
Price added that the HBCU Caravan “brings unity and love because we’re celebrating wins when they’re getting accepted on the spot.”
Price estimated that $1 million would be awarded in scholarships at the HBCU Caravan at BC.
Lanyce Tillman, a senior at Mira Monte High, and Vision Huggins, a Mira Monte junior, both said they enjoyed their experience at the HBCU Caravan.
“Everyone was welcoming,” said Huggins, a three-sport athlete (basketball, track and field and swimming). “I’m glad they have this. If COVID was here, we wouldn’t be able to experience it.”
Ben Perlado, director of Transfer Pathways at BC, said it was great to have the HBCU Caravan back in-person after it was virtual last year due to COVID restrictions.
“It’s important to provide access and opportunities for our students, especially for HBCUs,” Perlado said. “Some of these colleges may not be accessible to students and this is giving them an opportunity to have them here at the college for our transfer students to see what’s out there."
Antonique Rush, a freshman studying computer science at BC, said she heard about the HBCU Caravan from her younger brother, Semaj Johnson, who attends Golden Valley High, which also had a group at the event.
“I talked to a lot of recruiters,” Rush said. “HBCUs have a lot to offer and I think I’m going to choose an HBCU. Before I was thinking to go to a UC, but now I see what HBCUs have to offer and I’m really interested. I loved the event. Everyone was really nice and very informative, very helpful.”
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