High school students packed the Los Angeles Convention Center for the Black College Expo. Students were able to meet with representatives from Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU), as well as representatives from local schools. Many students brought their transcripts and were able to apply to the universities on the spot. Some colleges were accepting students that day and offered them financial aid packages.
The event featured a number of seminars about the importance of attending a HBCU, financial aid, and transferring from community colleges, as well as seminars related to certain career fields.
Many local community service organizations were on hand with high school students that they mentor.
While the event has past, a lot of the information presented can be found online on The Black College Expo’s website. Visit www.thecollegeexpo.org for more information.
Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Mu Lambda Omega Chapter (Culver City) ASCEND program
“Every ascend student is paired with a mentor who helps them prepare for college,” Dr. Jeshana Johnson said. “Each mentor helps their mentee with getting their transcripts, writing their letters of recommendations, and getting them into the right classes. Research shows that high school councilors do not prepare black students for the road to universities. So we want to make sure that the students know this information.”
The group meets monthly. For more information about joining the ASCEND program, visit www.akamlo.org.
Dorsey High School’s Young Black Men’s Group
“We are a group attempting to eliminate the stereotypes of young black men,” said Darryl McKellar, a teacher at Dorsey. “We wanted to get them some exposure to what’s out there. Not just colleges, but further career choices. And we’re getting them to improve their communication skills. They have to learn how to talk to people so that they can become better, and help their communities become better.”
Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Theta Mu Omega Chapter (Inglewood) ASCEND program
“We want students to be aware of attending college, and the variety of colleges that are out there,” Dr. Tangelia Alfred said. “The more we expose them to this, and the earlier, the more likely they are to attend a college.
“We try to reach out to those students who probably don’t hear that much about college. Their parents may not have attended college. So we want those kids to hear about it and to know about it. Then they start talking that college lingo. Once they learn it, they’re more familiar with it, they start asking more questions, and they become more engaged.”
For more information about joining the ASCEND program, visit www.aka-tmo.com.
Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Beta Psi Lambda Chapter (Los Angeles) Alpha Esquires
“The Black College Expo provided the Esquires the opportunity to interact and engage with numerous educated African Americans,” DeShon Andrews said. “It was an event that debunked mainstream ideologies that athletics and rapping are their only pathways to success.”
The Alpha Esquire’s meet twice a month. For information about joining, visit www.alphaesquires.com.