The nation’s oldest Greek-letter organization established by African-American college woman has vowed to continue its focus on education with an emphasis on historically black colleges and universities.
In December, the Sigma Nu Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority held its annual “HBCU For Life: Let’s Get Schooled Volume Three,” at the Homestead Festival House.
“We are just supporting those schools and helping to keep them running. We believe HBCUs are vital and we want to keep them active and support them, said Sigma Nu Vice President, Tawana Seets.
This banquet is a part of their Target I: HBCU for Life: A Call to Action initiative.
According to the initiative’s purpose, AKA members are encouraged to assist and financially support HBCUs and encourage students to attend them.
“It is a scholarship service project, and we are making sure juniors and seniors through our (College Admissions Process) program are being helped with applying for college, getting accepted to college and making sure they are ready to go to a university,” said Seets.
CAP is the sorority’s signature program and part of their initiative as well.
According to Seets, the sorority is currently raising money, so they can award scholarships to students for the college of their choice.
Although the banquet was for a good cause, AKAs wanted to make sure those in attendance had fun while giving.
They had door prizes, Greek Roll Call, HBCU awards and raised money for North Carolina A&T State University.
“A lot of people in this room helped raise me as an educator, my first teaching job was here,” said Granville County Public Schools Superintendent, Dr. Alisa McLean.
The guest speaker, McLean attended Elizabeth City State University, a HBCU.
After graduation, she moved to Roxboro with her husband and started her public education career with Person County Schools.
“HBCUs open the doors of education opportunity for African-Americans who were once legally denied in education. Additionally, these schools provided African-American students with a nurturing environment and an opportunity to explore their connected identities,” said McLean.
She recalled her HBCU experience, remembering the opportunities that were afforded to her.
Not only did she have the opportunity to gain an education but hear and see Rosa Parks, Colin Powell, Shirley Caesar and other at speaker series and convocation ceremonies.
She was also able to experience the camaraderie at games and travel with the choir and the cheerleading team.
Along with that, she reminded the audience the responsibility they held, to keep writing the history of HBCUs.
“I am just really pleased that this community is still taking steps to honor and pay tribute to historically black colleges and universities because they are a vital place in our society. It is important that we not forget, and that we do try to make sure that we have them here for the next generations,” said McLean.