Last spring, George School’s College Counseling office hosted, Exploring and Celebrating the Path to Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs), a virtual panel discussion introducing students to HBCUs and their unique distinctions. Panelists included Eden Jones ’20 (Hampton University), Janaia Madden ’20 (North Carolina A&T), Michael Clark ’20 (Howard University), Sidney Walters ’19 (Howard University), and AriAnna Thomas ’19 (Tuskegee University). AriAnna’s mother also participated.
“We selected seniors and recent alums as our panelists because we wanted students to hear from their peers about why they chose these universities and to debunk some common myths,” said Catherine Box, Associate Director of College Counseling. “It was an opportunity for students to learn why they might consider applying and to help see HBCUs as valuable options for continuing their education.”
One of the most common myths about HBCUs is that they do not offer as much, or any, financial aid.
“It was actually the financial aid package that drew me to Tuskegee,” said AriAnna. “They offered me a full ride for four years. No other school did that.”
For Michael, it was the culture that attracted him to Howard University. “Before George School, in all of my other schools, I was always the minority,” he said. “I learned a lot of things outside of myself and my own culture, but Howard is the place for me to become who I see myself becoming.”
“I thought it was powerful how openly and candidly the participants spoke,” said Catherine.
The College Counseling office plans to offer more of this type of programming in the future. “Afterwards we had great conversations with the students that attended and I think this type of program will absolutely be beneficial year after year. Terry Tuttle is a great champion of HBCUs in our office and deserves credit for helping us see this as a need and another way we can support George School students.”