Congratulations to the 2020 Scholars!

Micah

Howard University

"For me, becoming isn’t about arriving somewhere or achieving a certain aim. I see it instead as forward motion, a means of evolving, a way to reach continuously toward a better self. The journey doesn’t end.” 

As you prepare to embark on your next journey, what does this quote mean to you? 

 

Many young people today are in search of success. Some might not consider that success is actually a journey, not a destination. I understand and appreciate this concept and have made choices that have taken me all over the world in pursuit of evolving into the next young woman I need to become. That young woman is one grounded in the love and support of her race and culture. 

"I love my H in front of my B, my B in front of my C. I love my HBCU! You got me saying ohhhhhhh ohhhhhh. I love my HBCU!" I cannot wait to sing these words when I attend Howard University this fall. 

 

Attending an HBCU will help me reach continuously toward a better self by providing an intimate setting, in a challenging academic environment while learning more about my culture and the Black diaspora. I plan to put these advantages to work in my community as a Biochemist and Medical Researcher to alleviate many of the afflictions that affect my community. 

As a student at Dana Hall School, a small, all girls' independent school in Wellesley, Massachusetts, I fully understand the benefits of small classrooms and being amongst a majority demographic to which I identify. Surrounded by female classmates, I have been able to express myself freely without worrying about having things "mansplained" or having my thoughts and opinions downplayed. HBCUs offer this same advantage from a racial and cultural perspective. I will be so grateful to learn in an environment where the other major portion of my identity, my race, will be nurtured and respected as well. 

 

Attending an HBCU will also immerse me in culture in a way I have never quite experienced. To learn in an environment of diverse people of the Black diaspora will enrich how I see the world through Black people from various continents, countries, states and socio economic backgrounds. 

After I have soaked up all the Black Girl Magic my HBCU has to offer, I plan to continue my along journey by changing lives. I will share it with my community here in the Detroit Metro area by conducting medical research to lower the rates of diabetes, cardiovascular disease and obesity, which are illnesses that greatly affect the African-American community. 

Rita

University of Michigan

Becoming means never being completely satisfied with your achievements but always striving to be better than you were. For me, it means always beating my “highest score”. Ironically, one of the most important lessons that I learned as a younger child was from video games. If a player dedicated enough time and improved their skills, they could beat their personal best score. Ultimately, the goal was to inspire players to constantly seek improvement. In that sense, video games reflect life. 

 

I exert a similar type of energy into my own life, as I begin college. I am constantly seeking to better myself because the ultimate goal is to set the bar and help future generations. As a people, we want the next generation to be better than us. By achieving our goals and being the best versions of ourselves, we are letting future generations know that their goals are completely attainable. 

 

It is important to know that we can not allow time to limit our evolution. If you were to go back two hundred years and asked someone if an automotive vehicle could exist, they may have looked at you like you were insane. If you went back one hundred years and asked someone if human space travel was possible, they might have asked to check your temperature. If you were to go back just twenty years and asked if it was possible for there to be a black first family, they would ask if you meant in America or Africa. If we allowed the limited thoughts of others to keep us from our dreams and our full potential, we would not go very far in life. We would not advance. There would be no purpose for improvement, if we did not have the capacity to develop or achieve seemingly impractical feats. 

 

Becoming, constantly evolving, and persevering leads to the moment where others can say you finally became. You accomplished your goals, achieved philanthropic work, and gave back to your community. Whatever it was that you wanted to be, you became. I will constantly strive to reach what seems like the unimaginable or unrealistic goal. The limitations in the past will no longer be limitations for me. My skills will only improve in the future. I know that I will be a successful real estate mogul and that I will achieve any goal that I set out to accomplish.