In honor of Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) Week, the HBCU Week Foundation hosted an HBCU College Fair, sponsored by The Sallie Mae Fund.
With over a reported 6,000 students at this year’s fair in Atlanta, the purpose of the college fair is to meet representatives from HBCUs, have the chance to win scholarships, and receive on-the-spot acceptances to college.
Students were also able to learn about and access free resources that help make college more affordable, including Scholly, Sallie Mae’s free scholarship search tool that has helped students from across the country access millions of dollars in scholarships.
They’re also contributing $200,000 to HBCU Week Foundation to support access to HBCUs.
“We are always thrilled to present HBCU Week to students to give them a snapshot of the HBCU experience while connecting them to resources from our partners like Sallie Mae,” said Ashley Christopher, Founder and CEO of the HBCU Week Foundation. “HBCU Week is the week that changes lives – it provides opportunities for thousands of students, promotes a sense of belonging, and highlights the limitless possibilities of attending an HBCU.
There were dozens of HBCUs in attendance such as Tougaloo University (Jackson, Mississippi), Claflin University (Orangeburg, South Carolina), Langston University (Langston, Oklahoma), Dillard University (New Orleans, Louisiana), Clark Atlanta University, Savannah State University, Howard University, Livingston College (Salisbury North Carolina), Morgan State University, and many more.
Additionally, The Atlanta Voice spoke to a few representatives from the out-of-state HBCUs to ask why they decided to come to Atlanta for the college fair.
Jocha Gorden, director of admission recruitment and outreach at Langston University, said they came to Atlanta because Langston University is the only HBCU in the state of Oklahoma.
“I’ve actually done this fair before with another institution and I saw we had a lot of students who are interested in HBCUs, so I said now that I’m in my new university, I definitely want to put Langston University on the map in Atlanta and try to bring students out to Langston because we are one of the few schools that offer a full-ride scholarship,” Gorden said.
Dillard University Admissions Representative Terence Blanchard II said they came to Atlanta for the fair because he loves Atlanta and the students here.
“I love Atlanta, lived out here for three years and every time I come to Atlanta, I get quality students,” he said. “I have built a deeper connection with the students here and the thing I love about Atlanta, the students seem to be really engaged, interested, and my favorite part is talking to a student who don’t know anything about Dillard and watching their face light up when they find out all we have to offer them.”
Claflin University sophomore marketing student Kamille Wahaley said she came to participate in recruiting students because as a student, she wants to share her experiences to Atlanta students.
“We came to Atlanta for recruitment and to share Claflin’s story and everything about the university,” she said.
For more information on Sallie Mae’s free tools, resources, and scholarship programs, visit www.salliemae.com.