This is part of a series of blogs from Noble campus representatives to give a deeper look at campus life.
If you were to walk the hallways of Butler College Prep and ask students to quote a trending phrase, they may look you in the eyes and say “ We had a time last night!” And if you were to ask anyone who went on our recent HBCU tour in October, they would tell you about the same — “We had a time last on that trip!”
This October, the college team and a few chaperones embarked on a trip down south for our annual HBCU Tour with 40 seniors.
THE ROAD TRIP DOWN
Headed towards Atlanta at 5 a.m., our coach bus was initially full of laughs and excitement that turned to silence and slumber. Once we entered Kentucky, music began to blast, laughter filled the atmosphere, trivia games were played, and watched a few movies. Students, who may not have necessarily spoken to each other, were now creating road trip memories that will last a lifetime.
We took plenty of rest stops. Whenever we made stops in different cities, students explored the areas and tried new food. Students were even engaged in talking about how the prices of products varied in different parts of the country. By the time we made it to Atlanta, students were exhausted but ready to explore the illustrious HBCU campuses that they had heard so much about.
FIRST STOP: TUSKEGEE UNIVERSITY & ALABAMA STATE UNIVERSITY
Our first day of campus tours brought us to Tuskegee University and Alabama State University.
Tuskegee University welcomed us with open arms. We learned about how the history of the institution was built on the backs and intellectualism of greats like Booker T. Washington. We were even amazed at how the school has worked endlessly to preserve places like Washington’s home and a former hospital on campus — which was the only health care facility Black Americans could go to because of segregation. Tuskegee offered a family atmosphere and Southern hospitality that allowed students the opportunity to ask any questions, no matter if it was pertaining to major or student life experience.
Our next stop was Alabama State University! By the time we got to Alabama State, we made our way to the cafeteria and enjoyed a quality meal with students and faculty. Students got the opportunity to see what it would be like for them to have a college meal plan and learn how to navigate crowded spaces.
Our tour at Alabama State was led by amazing students who told us all about the history of the campus. We learned about some abstract artifacts that sit right in the middle of campus. We learned about how the campus was forced to name a building after a member of the Ku Klux Klan but also how they persevered through moments like this. One thing that students really enjoyed was learning that if they applied to the school with a 2.5 GPA or better, they would receive a Presidential Scholarship. As we wrapped up our visit, students even got to get a glimpse at Ray J and Teyana Taylor filming a TV show on campus.
SECOND STOP: MOREHOUSE COLLEGE, SPELMAN COLLEGE & CLARK ATLANTA UNIVERSITY
On our third day of the tour, we turned Atlanta upside down. In the morning, we visited Morehouse, Spelman, and Clark Atlanta University. These particular visits were super special from the jump because we got to reunite with two Butler alum: Antonio Chambers (c/o 2022, current Morehouse student) and Taylor Sibley (c/o 2022, current Clark Atlanta student).
During our tour, we got to see how, even though all three campuses were connected, they were also distinctly different. Our young men enjoyed Morehouse because of the brotherhood and accountability that was offered. Our young women enjoyed Spelman because of the sisterhood and creativity that exists on the campus. It was such an incredible experience to hear them rave about how they want to be the next Stacy Abrams and Keisha Knight Pullman. Spelman and Morehouse showed our students that, even if a campus is small, you can still enjoy rich history and get everything that you need.
Clark Atlanta gave our students a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Throughout the tour, we were intrigued but not shocked to learn that numerous buildings on the promenade were once civil rights meeting locations and housed very important moments in Dr. Martin Luther King Jr’s journey. Students were also excited to learn that due to the structure of the three colleges, they could attend Clark and still attend classes at the other two. Lastly, students got the opportunity to shop till they dropped at the bookstore and buy themselves some historic swag.
During the evening, the students got a chance to tour the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial and his childhood home.