HBCU Businesses

This week on Historically Black Friday – The Yin and the Yang

This week on Historically-Black Friday we ordered and received our order of pecan pralines, from Rose Mary’s Pralines.

The Yin.

Rose Mary's Pralines

I’m not a huge candy guy. I think the only time I’ve ever had pralines was in ice cream. But with Valentine’s Day approaching and having read the history of the recipe and seeing the beautiful photos I had to give them a try. The first word that comes to mind is decadent. They’re on the luxury end of the candy spectrum according to taste, and are absolutely made to be shared.

Campus Life

[Photos] First Lady Delivers the Commencement Speech at Spelman College

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(Photo Credit: Tammy Garnes)

The First Lady Michelle Obama delivered the commencement address at the 2011 Spelman College graduation this weekend. She was awarded with an Honorary Doctorate along side Sisters Debbie Allen and Phylicia Rashad, Howard University Alumni, who received Honorary Doctorates in Fine Arts.

People on the Move

La’Shanda Holmes featured on NBC

La’Shanda Holmes, the first black female copter pilot in the US Coast guard, and Alum of Spelman College, was featured on NBC during Black History Month. She has a compelling story, as a foster child, and a victim of abuse who has gone on to inspire those around her.


[Black History] A Brief History of Spelman College

Spelman, one of the nation’s most highly regarded colleges for women, was founded by Sophia B. Packard and Harriet E. Giles, two friends who were commissioned in 1879 by the Woman’s American Baptist Home Mission Society to study the living conditions “among the freedmen of the South.” Appalled by the lack of educational opportunity for Black women, the missionaries returned to Boston determined to effect change. On April 11, 1881, they opened a school in the basement of Atlanta’s Friendship Baptist Church with $100 provided by the congregation of the First Baptist Church of Medford, Massachusetts. The first eleven pupils, ten women and one girl, were mostly ex-slaves, determined to learn to read the Bible and write.


Two former HBCU grads are accepted in to The Bouchet Society

The Bouchet Society recognizes outstanding scholarly achievement and promotes diversity and excellence in doctoral education and the professoriate. Its network of pre-eminent scholars exemplifies academic and personal excellence, character, service and advocacy for students who have been traditionally underrepresented in the academy.


La’Shanda Holmes becomes the 1st Black Female Helicopter Pilot in Coast Guard History

Perseverance, dedication, grit, a desire to excel – these are all traits desired in a student aviator. Training in the aviation program for the maritime services is intentionally difficult to stress and push the students beyond their comfort zones so they can meet the hardships their service will entail. However, when that prospective pilot is slated to become a barrier breaker as well, those traits are not just desired, but necessary.

That Lt. j.g. La’Shanda Holmes had those traits was never in doubt. The humble, soft-spoken young woman had faced trials growing up in North Carolina that tested and tempered her desire to excel. When she walked across the stage April 9th to receive her wings as the first African-American female helicopter pilot in the U.S. Coast Guard, it was simply the next chapter of a proud story.


New documentary portays the journey of 1st AA women Filmakers

Inside the Digital Moving Image Salon takes us on the journey of one of the first African American women filmmakers and animators of our time, Ayoka Chenzira, as she creates an outlet for a new generation of young women to recognize the importance of documenting their story using new media technologies.


America’s top High School talent choose HBCU’s

These days, Cheyenne Boyce is mulling many melodies.

The 17-year-old Cass Technical High School senior has been listening to classical recordings and constantly practicing her cello for an opportunity many musicians dream of: performing at New York’s Carnegie Hall.

This month, Boyce is set to join about 50 others from the Suzuki Royal Oak Institute of Music for a Manhattan Concert Productions series. But she won’t have any printed sheet music in front of her. When the Detroiter is onstage, she’ll play each piece from memory, as is standard. “It’s been difficult memorizing everything,” Boyce said. “It’s definitely challenging, but I’m working really hard at it. … I’m so excited.”

That drive is part of what led the teen to best some 500 applicants nationwide for the Tom Joyner Foundation “Full Ride Scholarship.” The award covers full tuition, room and board and books for up to 10 semesters at the historically black college she chooses to attend.

The group, founded by nationally broadcast radio show host Tom Joyner, has raised more than $55 million to help students attend black colleges.

Its third scholarship winner, Boyce has a 4.0 grade point average and ranks first in her graduating class. She’s been accepted at Howard University and Spelman College, but still is deciding which to attend.

“Cheyenne is an outstanding student who has worked hard to become the No. 1 student at one of Detroit’s most competitive schools,” said Joyner, who interviewed her on his show Monday.

Besides playing with Suzuki, she also is in Cass Tech’s symphony orchestra; studies Japanese and is in several advancement placement courses; volunteers at a recycling center; is vice president of her school’s National Honor Society; and sings in the choir at Grace Episcopal Church in Detroit.

She also takes dance classes at Marygrove College and spent two years with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra’s Civic Youth Ensembles.

“She’s an extremely hard worker,” said her mother,