Dear Fly Black Girl Part II
Dear Soon-to-be High School Graduate,
Applying for colleges can be stressful. It hasn’t even been a month into your senior year of high school and you’re probably already bombarded with emails from college recruiters, annoying parental advice, and the dreaded tasks from having to fill out your Common Application. However, there’s an added decision for black students to make: the HBCU (historically black colleges and universities) vs. PWI (predominantly white institutions) choice. You know, the one you’ve been trying to avoid thinking about. It’s the one question you’ve been constantly asked at family cookouts and during family dinners. You’re probably still wondering why the question was constantly being asked at those specific times since you still had much more thinking to do. Nevertheless, coming to a decision is important because being comfortable with academia and campus environment is essential.
As a young black girl trying to navigate the college application process, I was confronted with that tough decision as well. I had a difficult time trying to decide initially because of my personal experience with majority black and white schools. However, I eventually chose to attend a PWI because it was the best fit for me. I’m here to help you make the decision making process clearer. A PWI would be the best fit for you if:
You Love Sports and Want to Engage in a D1 College Sports Vibe
Unfortunately, due to low funding, historically black colleges and universities don’t get to engage in the typical sports culture that other colleges have because they don’t offer as many varied sports.
You’re Interested in a Plethora of Resources Available to You
Just like sports, predominately white institutions typically have more student resources to offer because they have the funding to do so. Usually, it isn’t hard to find those resources on a PWI’s campus.
You’re Seeking Close-Knit Camaraderie Among Black Peers
Because black people are an obvious minority at predominantly white institutions, it’s easier for black students to know each other and try to help one another. There’s even a groupme chat specifically for black students at my school.
Being Fully Engaged in Greek Life Doesn’t Hold Much Weight for You
Black greek culture at PWIs isn’t as strong as it is on HBCU campuses. The black sororities and fraternities at PWI’s don’t receive as much support or attention as you might find at historically Black institutions. Keep this in mind when applying; especially if you plan on carrying out your mother’s sorority legacy.
You Can Handle Being a Black Girl in an Semi-Oppressive Campus Culture
Being a black girl at a PWI implies that you understand that your success isn’t generally wanted, and black girl scholarship tends to be unwelcomed. According to an article published in The Atlantic, black girls have a harder time fitting in at white, suburban schools than black boys. That atmosphere will most likely be identical at any PWI, so if you decide on this choice, beware.
Although these are tough choices to consider, you have to ensure that you’re making the best choice for you and your overall happiness.