HBCU College Expo prepares students for their future

Published 11:55 am Wednesday, October 25, 2023

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Access College Foundation presented its HBCU College Expo to much attendance. Held on Thursday, Oct. 19, at King’s Fork High School, many students stopped by the expo with their families to start preparations for their future beyond high school. Along with various historically Black colleges and universities, plenty of fraternities and vendors for the U.S. Military and Navy were also set for students to consider as options for their future.

During the expo, Kings Fork High School Access Counselor Adrienne Miller took the time to express her happiness toward the turnout.

“Obviously, when you plan something, you want a good turnout. Sometimes a lot of things happen. Not that people don’t want to come, but anything could happen,” Miller said. “But so far, I’m ecstatic at the turnout. I’m excited. I’m pleasantly pleased to know that the work was put in for good.”

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Nansemond River High School School Counseling Director Kimberlie Reid also talked about her excitement toward the expo turnout.

“I’m excited to see that Suffolk students are getting an opportunity to experience something outside of the norm for them. Just Adrienne being able to provide this opportunity to them is amazing,” Reid said.

HBCUs in attendance included Virginia State University, Norfolk State University, Hampton University, Elizabeth City State, Howard University, Virginia Union University, Morgan State University, North Carolina Central University, and Bowie State University. Miller noted how “wonderful” it is seeing the schools come together in one place.

“Because a lot of times, especially with admissions offices with everything happening since COVID, there have been record numbers of enrollment numbers, since probably about 2019,” Miller said. “So, I have some Maryland schools as well, our border schools, but a lot of them know each other because they attend a lot of events together. So they’re really excited to come out this way because this area is so large, but also they’re seeing our numbers increase at their universities for those schools.”

On what students will take away from the expo, Reid expressed her hopes for them knowing that SPS is invested in them having a successful future.

“I feel like the students will see that the teachers, staff, their access advisers are fully invested in them, that we’re interested in what their plans are postsecondary, that we’re hoping for them to be successful. And whatever things that we can put into their pathways to meet success, we’re going to put in front of them and offer them the best,” Reid said.

“And just another option,” followed Miller. 

“It’s not like a one size fits all, one color fits all. It’s going to be whatever they have been exposed to that they can make a selective decision when it’s time. A lot of these schools also have open houses that they are able to go to, weekend events that are free, we also put on college tours,” Miller said. “So again, it’s just more about the exposure, because a lot of them they don’t know. And even though we have a lot of schools right in our area, they haven’t been. And a lot of students think that going to a football game is basically a college tour and that’s just one aspect of a school. So it’s just giving them another option.”