14th Sep2013

North Carolina A&T State University Campus Pictures

by Staff

We had the honour of taking a tour of the North Carolina A&T State University Campus and we wanted to share the beautiful images with you.

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01st May2013

Brandon Bellamy – North Carolina A&T State University (NCAT) c/o ’08

by Staff

North Carolina A&T Alum and Higher education administrator, Brandon Bellamy stops by to share with you his HBCU Experience as an Aggie. Take heed young world. 

Where are you from? How did you first hear about HBCUs?

I am originally from Greensboro, North Carolina and grew up literally on A&T’s campus while my mother and father worked on post-graduate education opportunities. I completed high school and now call home in the Washington, DC metropolitan region.

My first experience with an HBCU was North Carolina A&T. My mother was completing graduate coursework when I was born and I have been part of the Aggie family ever since. Additionally, my paternal grandparents both attended Johnson C. Smith University, numerous aunts, uncles and other family members attending HBCUs including Winston Salem State, North Carolina Central, Howard University, etc. My worldview was shaped by the fact that my family were very involved with their alma maters and supported nearly all HBCUs when they had an opportunity.

What made you choose an HBCU over a pwi?

I went to high school in Fairfax County, Virginia and in many cases I was the only African American male in many of my honors and AP classes. Knowing that all of my family had attended HBCUs I knew to consider them, but I had to be realistic about some of my other opportunities. My choice to attend an HBCU over a PWI was made purely on personal preference, I was ready to go “home.”

How did you decide to become a student at North Carolina A&T State University ?

I decided to go with my first choice, North Carolina A&T simply because I was ready to go home. I had applied to North Carolina A&T, Norfolk State University, Virginia State and Hampton University. I was accepted at all three institutions, and I received very generous scholarship offers from Norfolk State and Virginia State. However, those institutions did not connect with me, or rather; I did not want those institutions to connect with me. Having spent time away from A&T, I felt it was time for me to go back and blaze my own trail in Aggieland.

What professors at North Carolina A&T State University left the most impression upon you as a student and/or person? What did they do that continues to mean so much to you to this day?

It is hard to single out a few professors who left very large impressions upon me because each of them did in their own special way, even faculty who I never completed coursework with.

However, Dr. Terrolyn Carter, Dr. Samuel Moseley and Dr. Peter Myers all played varying roles in how I view my time at A&T and how I view the world today.

My coursework with these three professors worked to strengthen me as a critical thinker, pushing past my own capabilities to become a person. I thoroughly enjoyed that these faculty members made sure that their classrooms were inclusive learning environments where we are able to challenge our existing assumptions and pursue concepts that we were interested in as it related to the coursework and our academic interests.

What is the story of your “experience” to date at North Carolina A&T State University given its heralded status as a stellar and prestigious institution?

I walked on campus knowing that there were many people who would tell me that “I knew you before you knew yourself.” Those figures were great to have when things got tough, but at the same time caused some internal conflict about my own journey. Nevertheless, the old adage that your college experience is what you make of it rings true. This question could have me going on for a long time, but I want to center on two things – hard work and respecting our legacy.

I came on campus and blazed my own trail getting involved in my original major in the School of Technology with the National Association for Industrial Technology (NAIT) and became an intern with the Student Government Association.

In my freshman year, I traveled to my first national conference, worked closely with executive board members and even became a member of an advisory committee for the Dean of Students. My goal was to get involved in areas that I felt comfortable with such as student leadership and work hard. That hard work opened various doors for me such as becoming a McNair Scholar, sitting on numerous university committees and now as an alumnus cultivating relationships that allow me to continue to support our institution internationally.

We talk significantly about our civil rights legacy at A&T, I grew up knowing many of the unsung heros of the movement whether through family connections or even my home church, Saint James Presbyterian.

We were taught that we are standing on the shoulders of giants and that the work that we do will affect those who come after us. While involved in student government it became important to look at the longer-term picture, advocating on behalf of students to join the Higher Education Area Transit authority, to supporting efforts to help students displaced by Katrina adjust to Aggieland, I believed that hard work and a lot of fun would go a long way.

 

Where were the spots to go to if you wanted to cuddle with your boy or girlfriend?

I will defer this question to some of my other Aggie Alumni to answer. Just be clear, there are definite spots to enjoy the company of your significant other.

What were the best restaurants on and near campus? Which dishes did you enjoy the most?

Being from Greensboro, I would enjoy to get off campus and visit places such as Libby Hill, Stameys BBQ and Yum Yums Hot Dogs and Ice Cream.

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Libby Hill Seafood Restaurant – Photo Credit: Libby Hill Seafood Facebook Page

My friends would always look at me strange when I would suggest odd places to go eat, especially in Northwest Greensboro where I grew up at. However, Minj Grille before they relocated back to Durham was my favorite spot near campus (2005-2008). Great specials, the majority of the staff were Aggies and we always had a blast when we went to Minj… especially during the summer of 2007.

What were the chants heard most often at the sporting events?

There is never an inappropriate time to say Aggie Pride…ever. Just make sure you choose the correct tone and inflection. However, I have grown fond of one of the newer chants “A-G-G-I-E (what?) P-R-I-D-E (what?) Gimme’ dat, Gimme’ dat!” (Video below uploaded by Thomas L. Jones, Jr.)

Who was your College crush?

That is between me and her. However, I did enjoy my time at A&T and met some very incredible people, many of which I am still in contact with.

How did you overcome your nervousness about going to college?

Nervousness??? I was more apprehensive about adjusting to Greensboro more or less as an adult more than actually the academic parts of being in school.

However, I had a great support system of friends in Aggie Suites F, along with family and friends who kept me grounded. I am still eternally grateful to Dr. Vallie Guthrie who was a member of my church and professor of chemistry for always having an open door to give advice and just let me vent.

What was your major? and Why did you choose it?

I graduated summa cum laude in Liberal Studies, concentration in culture change and social development. I chose the major because my heart was not in my original major, Electronics & Computer Technology. I knew Dean Elazer Barnette from years ago and he encouraged me to consider exploring my technical side. I enjoyed computers and was knowledgeable, but the major never fit me.

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Meet Dr.Elazer Barnette, currently the Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs and Planning Dean at Savannah State University – Photo Credit: savannahstate.edu

Liberal Studies gave me a great opportunity to choose an interdisciplinary major, prepare me for graduate school and even conduct some award winning research. Additionally, Liberal Studies gave me an opportunity to graduate on time and even use credits earned from my research experiences at the University of Illinois.

What was your proudest moment @ North Carolina A&T State University?

The obvious answer is graduating with highest honors and walking across the stage having a personal relationship built with nearly every senior level administrator, many of the trustees and faculty on the dias.

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2006-2007 SGA Executive Board (Moody Administration – 11 Backs
Against the Wall) – Photo Credit: Brandon Bellamy

As I go through the different highlights, one strange one stands out as a shining start. Losing my electing for SGA President is my proudest moment while at A&T.

Contrary to popular belief, the loss of the election allowed me to tackle issues that I would have been hindered from attempting while in office, along with focusing on graduate school preparation.

During my senior year, instead of being SGA President, I was able to work on a senior research project that opened my eyes to the implications of state-level policies on the perceptions of our institution by our alumni. I also was able to take a few 500-level advanced undergraduate – graduate courses that gave me exposure and preparation for my graduate program.

What was your saddest moment @ North Carolina A&T State University ?

Personally, getting the letter from Dr. Meyers saying that I had earned an “Honors Vacation” for my gpa going below a 3.5 for two consecutive semesters. In high school, I was never part of the National Honors Society. I was a great students, well-rounded but I just never made the cut for them. When I was invited to join Honors, that upped the game for me and made me work even harder. Getting an honors vacation started a nearly year and a half journey to get back into the program that ultimately succeeded.

However, after I graduated what struck me very close to home was the loss of Dennis Hayle. I had seen Dennis before I left for Iowa State and we talked about his future plans. I had even sent back to him information about graduate programs in communications and even some dual degree programs. (Video below uploaded by YoungProgressives)

When I received the text and the call telling me what happened, it just felt too close to home. I am very happy that his fraternity has set up and is very close to having the Dennis Hayle endowed scholarship fund almost fully funded. I would strongly encourage Aggies and HBCU friends to contribute to the scholarship. www.ncat.edu/giving/give-now and select the Dennis Hayle Scholarship as a choice for your donation.

What did you pledge? And why? And if not, why not?

The decision not to join a black greek letter organization was personal, it was not the time or place for me. There may be another time when membership will play a key role in my personal and professional development, but instead my work in Alpha Lambda Delta, Alpha Chi, Alpha Kappa Mu and Phi Kappa Phi honor societies was more than enough greek-life for me.

However, this year I did make a giving pledge to A&T that I will be fulfilling during Alumni weekend.

How were you positively active on campus? (e.g. clubs, SGA, etc.)

Student Government played a key role in my time on campus from 2004 to 2008.

I first started off as an intern in the Williams Administration in 2004-05. I chaired the Finance Committee of the 38th Legislative Assembly during the Ramey Administration during 2005-06.

During 2006-07, I had the pleasure of serving as the Treasurer and Chief Financial Officer for the Student Government Association during the Moody Administration.

Our president Arnita Floyd Moody (now Morris), gave me significant leeway in crafting the association’s budget, working with the senior administrators to secure additional funding and shaping my work ethic as a details oriented technocrat. One of my additional assignments was to serve as the liaison to the freshman class executive board.

In addition to student government, I was involved with the honors program and nearly all of its affiliated honor societies holding elected office in Alpha Lambda Delta (Editor) during 2005-06 and Phi Kappa Phi (Student Vice President) in 2007-08.

Additionally, I was a Campus Life Mentor, Ronald E. McNair scholar and served on a number of prominent committees including A&T Register Advisory, Food Service Advisory, University Tuition and Fees and the Student Activity Fee Allocation Committees.

My activities on campus have directly impacted my activities post-graduation.

For example while in graduate school, I found myself involved with Phi Kappa Phi at Iowa State University in addition to groups such as the Graduate and Professional Student Senate and the Black Graduate Student Association.

Furthermore, since returning to the DC Metro area, I have gotten involved with the Washington, DC chapter of the A&T Alumni Association and also the Young Alumni Council (Twitter) where we are keenly aware that the association has to prepare for the needs of a millennial alumnus.

Where was the “yard” located?

Generally speaking it was just the whole campus. If I was on the yard and not in class, people knew to find me either in the Student Union or over near Murphy Hall. (Video below uploaded by reddnmilla)

What and where were the historical places on campus?

Campus itself is a historical monument into itself dating back to the city of Greensboro’s bid to have the then A&M College for the Negro race located in Greensboro in the mid-1890s.

However, I specifically think about old Scott Hall where in 1969 where the National Guard was called to squash a rebellion stemming from a disputed student government election at nearby Dudley High School. Scott Hall was also where the start of the sit-in movement began and was the home to start of many other social and civil moments on campus and throughout the country.

Are there any ghost stories involving buildings or spots on campus?

None that I know if, but we can get one started…

How many “firsts” did you have at college ? What were they? (e.g. first road trip, first job interview, first love, first “F or A”, etc.)

Just be certain, A&T opened up the doors to a lot of different opportunities. I met some great people and have used A&T as the launching pad for some very interesting experiences from our first undergraduate away-game tail gate to my first national research conference.

However, today those firsts in college have developed into firsts as a member of the A&T Alumni Association. In 2013, I will celebrate my first major college reunion (5-years), be the first member of my class to win the Velma Speight Young Alumnus Award and also become the youngest member of the new Alumni Board of Directors.

If you could speak to those family members that have risen but that live forever through you, what words would you speak?

Oddly worded question.

However, I would want to share with my ancestors that I have tried to live by the mantra that all that we are required to do in life is to love, have mercy, believe in justice and to walk humbly with our God. As long as I do those things, I will believe that they will be proud of their legacy.

If you could only speak two sentences to the youth coming after you what would you say?

Take the ACT instead of the SAT and only apply to HBCUs. Take advantage of every opportunity that comes your way.

What situation in your life made you feel like you had arrived into manhood?

I believe making the choice to come to A&T and understanding the financial implications of my own decision. I had some scholarship money and support from my family; however, I was conscious that I did take out some federal and private loans to make my educational experience a reality in Aggieland. Those aren’t easy decisions to make and as I advise students today, they have to be realistic about what they are getting themselves into with their finances from an early age.

When and how did you discover your passion in life?

By being on the Dean of Students Advisory Council (2004-05), I discovered that there was a whole profession working in higher education.

As I grew, I honed in on certain areas of interest and have continued to work towards striving for equity in education and strengthening alumni leadership. I had known for a long time that education was key passion, but it was not until getting into college that I had a wider view of what I could do.

What sports and/or extra curricular activities did you do in High School? And why?

No sports, just band. In fact, there is a varsity letter for my tenure in the marching band at Falls Church High School where I was drum major in 2003-04. Additionally, I was involved in Student Government, the county-wide Student Advisory Council, Legacy club, yearbook and a number of other groups.

How do you deal with racism if you encounter it?

It all depends on the time and place where the situation occurs.

However, I am very much aware that race plays a key role in our society and the scholarship of authors such as Derrick Bell, Gloria Ladson-Billings and Lori Patton-Davis on critical race theory put into the literature some of the lived experiences that I am very much aware of. (Video below uploaded by houstonaplus)

I believe that some issues with race may have more to do with class than race, which in graduate school confused many of my colleagues who misinterpreted that class just as much as race can change the playing field for many people.

Handling situations dealing with race now requires more finesse and understanding of what we made it to the point of tension more than brawn.

Whats your take on life (in the philosophical sense)?

That unfortunately, our society is inherently racist and that we must overcome those situations through developing coping mechanisms that will allow us to succeed even if the playing field is not equal.

My HBCU experience has taught me that I must come into any situation confident and never unwilling to take on a challenge. The things we take for granted today were fought and died for by people who just wanted a sliver of the advances that we have now. Understanding all of that, we must not be thieves of these experiences, but play an active role in giving back and making sure that those who come behind us have the same if not more opportunities for growth and development.

We would like to say thank you, to you the reader and also thank you to Mr. Bellamy for sharing his time and wisdom regarding his HBCU Experience at North Carolina A&T State University. 

Connect and Inquire with Mr. Bellamy!

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Mr. Bellamy (far right) attending a function in Washington, DC – Photo Credit: Brandon Bellamy

Brandonbellamy.com

Twitter: @ProfBellamy

f: blbellamy

LinkedIn: blbellamy

E-Mail: blbella1[AT]gmail.com

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03rd Apr2013

AGGIE PRIDE!! Why @SweetBrownSugar ’15 chose to attend North Carolina A&T

by Staff

Top Reasons for attending a Powerhouse of an HBCU such as North Carolina A&T State University

Environment

“I loved the environment”

Students proud to attend A&T

(I loved the) “…sense of pride”

Leaders

“I saw how well poised the leaders were.”

Outgoing Students/Faculty/Staff

“Everyone was inviting & willing to help”

Photo from wikimedia.org

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05th Jul2012

Joshua Laws – North Carolina A&T State University ’14

by Staff

Current Aggie Student Ambassador and former Orientation Student Leader, Mr. Laws is currently a student at North Carolina A&T State University pursuing a degree in Liberal Studies with a concentration in International Studies. From transferring to A&T from a pwi to becoming actively involved on campus; Mr. Laws famed “HBCU Experience” is a great read and a story with many more pages left to be filled.

Why did you choose an HBCU over a pwi?

I actually transferred from a PWI and it was the best decision of my life. My experience at a PWI allowed me to get a glimpse of both sides of the spectrum. The biggest thing that attracted me to an HBCU North Carolina A&T in particular, was the family atmosphere.

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We truly live by what everyone knows as AGGIE PRIDE, and what we believe is Achieving Great Goals In Everything Producing Renowned Individuals Dedicated To Excellence!

What city are you from? Who introduced you to the greatness of HBCUs?

I’m from Charlotte, North Carolina and I was introduced to the greatness of HBCUs the first time I went to Battle of the Bands at Memorial Stadium with A&T, SCSU, and a few others.

How did you decide to become a student at North Carolina A&T State University?

Felt Like Home

Feel free to elaborate…

As I said before, the family atmosphere at the football games, to social events, even in the class room, my HBCU is a LARGE family.

Which professors are leaving the most impression upon your academic and personal life? What do they do that continues to mean so much to you to this day?

If I had to choose one professor in particular (which is very difficult due to the multitude of professors that have made an impact on my life), it would have to be Dr. T. Quaye. She teaches various time periods of History, but African American History would be my favorite.

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Dr. Tiffany Quaye

She doesn’t teach you what to think, but she forces you to think beyond your conventional mind. She teaches you to investigate further than what is perceived at face value.

What is the story of your “HBCU experience”?

The story of my HBCU experience: As a transfer student I simply wanted to go to A&T, get my degree and get on with my life. After my first semester my mindset changed completely and I yearned to become apart of everything that I could.

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I became a leader around campus helping with incoming and prospective students. Also obtained the best GPA in my college career while remaining active.

What is your major? and Why did you choose it?

I am a Liberal Studies student with a concentration in International Studies. I chose this major because out of high school, I completed the requirements of the Bill Gates Asia Society program which was a small scale version of International Studies.

Where is the “yard” located?

Greensboro, NC. I consider the entire campus the “yard”

Where are the historical places on campus? Are there any ghost stories involving buildings or spots on campus?

The Greensboro Four Statue (where the nationwide sit-ins started during the Civil Rights Movement), The War Memorial, the entire campus is a history lesson.

No ghost stories, just a school that is DEEPLY enriched in its own History

What are the best restaurants on and near campus? Favorite dishes?

To us students, any restaurant that delivers food is the best as well as the multiple options on Summit Avenue about 5 minutes from campus.


View Larger Map

How many “firsts” have you had at North Carolina A&T State University? What were they? (e.g. first road trip, first job interview, first love, first “F or A”, etc.)

Even as a transfer student I’ve experienced a few firsts but none that I can think of at the moment.

How are you positively active on your college campus? What about in high school?

I have served as Mr. Aggie Suites F in our Residence Hall Association. I’ve also served as an Orientation Student Leader and Welcome Week Ambassador for a short time. Currently I am an Aggie Student Ambassador. We conduct tours to future and prospective students every week throughout the year.

If you could only speak two sentences to the youth coming after you what would you say?

I am proud that you have made it thus far and chosen to follow in the footsteps of generations before you because there are some that you may even know who have chosen to do otherwise. Welcome to the HBCU experience, be sure to embrace it and in being successful, instill in your heart to give back to the next group coming along because you yourself did not reach success on your OWN!

(I couldn’t speak ONLY two sentences seriously because there is so much advice and encouragement to be given, especially when associated with an HBCU)

We are glad you enjoyed the story of Mr. Laws “HBCU Experience” thus far. Just know if you have any questions regarding A&T, college life, or more you can respectfully contact him via TwitterFacebook – or Email. Also if you attend or attended A&T feel free to tell us your story!

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05th Sep2011

Tiffany S. Jones – North Carolina A&T State University

by Staff

“I had a few cousins and family friends who attended A&T so I got the opportunity to attend University Day and Homecoming as a senior in high school…”

C/O 2003

Major: Journalism & Mass Communication with a concentration in Print Journalism
Visit Tiffany’s Blog >www.SmartysWorld.com

Personal Contacts:

   

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How did you decide to become a student at North Carolina A&T State University?

I had a few cousins and family friends who attended A&T so I got the opportunity to attend University Day and Homecoming as a senior in high school in 1999. From those two events, I got hooked. I enrolled in the fall of 2000.

 

What professors at North Carolina A&T State University left the most impression upon you as a student and/or person? What did they do that continues to mean so much to you to this day?

Dr. Myra Shird and Dr. Sandra Alexander actually gave me information to use for life as opposed to teaching me the subject matter. Both professors shared their experiences with me and offered themselves as mentors to help me in my quest to become my family’s first college graduate.

I also give credit to D. Cherie Lofton and Mr. Tony Welborne, the program director and manager of the campus radio station 90.1 WNAA for reinforcing a great work ethic.

 

What is the story of your “experience” to date at North Carolina A&T State University given its heralded status as a stellar and prestigious institution?

I went into A&T on a full academic scholarship and graduated early. I attribute all my success to the relationships I was able to build with my peers and my educators. The support, guidance and encouragement that was given to me felt like that of a family that I don’t believe I could have gotten anywhere else.

 

Where were the spots to go to if you wanted to cuddle with your boy or girlfriend?

I wouldn’t know. I spent most of my time in the library. LoL! But everyone, relationship or not, spent a lot of time on The Strip if weather permitted.

 

What were the best restaurants on and near the campus? Which dishes do you enjoy the most?

Anybody who spent time at A&T is familiar with Cookout, Elizabeth’s Pizza, Libby Hill and Bojangles. My friends and I spent more money at Cookout on milkshakes and fries than any of us care to admit.

 

What were the chants heard most often at the sporting events?

AGGIE PRIDE!!!

 

Who was your College crush??

A football player name Ivan Butler. I wonder whatever happened to him.

 

How did you overcome your nervousness about going to college?

I knew it was something that I had to do. I pretty much gave myself a pep talk and decided that I owed it to my family and myself to go and do well.

 

What was your major? and Why did you choose it?

I majored in Journalism & Mass Communication with a concentration in Print Journalism. I chose it because that was the only way I saw that I could get paid a steady wage for writing.

 

What has been your proudest moment @ North Carolina A&T State University?

My proudest moment was the entire weekend of graduation. We had our departmental luncheon and I received several awards including the highest GPA in my major and it was capped off with graduation itself. It was the sum of my success over the previous three and a half years and I had no doubt accomplished a lot.

 

What was your saddest moment @ North Carolina A&T State University?

Sept. 11, 2001. Everything was really somber. We gathered as a family in the Stallings Ballroom for prayer for the people who perished, for their families and for the missing people and their families. Though it was sad, it made me proud that we could all pull together in tough times.

 

What did you pledge? And why? And if not, why not?

I did not pledge any organization. My school work took priority over everything.

 

How were you positively active on campus? (e.g. clubs, SGA, etc.)

I was an announcer for the campus radio station, a student program director for the radio station, a reporter for the school paper and the staff writer for the yearbook, “Ayantee” for the 2002-03 year.

 

Where was the “yard” located?

1601 E. Market St., Greensboro, NC

 

What and where were the historical places on campus?

Scott dormitories, Curtis Hall

 

Are there any ghost stories involving buildings or spots on campus?

Not to my knowledge. We had real life scary events that took place on our campus during the Civil Rights Movement, so, I don’t think we needed any legends when we had real life heroes.

 

How many “firsts” did you have at college ? What were they? (e.g. first road trip, first job interview, first love, first “F or A”, etc.)

n/a

 

If you could speak to those family members that have risen but that live forever through you, what words would you speak?

Thank you. It is because of you that I am who I am.

 

When and how did you discover your passion in life?

I think I’m still discovering. I love learning new things and meeting new people, so I’m treating this whole thing as a journey.

 

Whats your take on life (in the philosophical sense)?

Stay low (humble) and keep moving.

 

If you could only speak two sentences to the youth coming after you what would you say?
Be sure to find balance and have fun. Your goals are not a guarantee.
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05th Sep2011

Keith Kirkland – North Carolina A&T State University

by Staff

C/O 2009

Major: Music

The Selection: “….My junior high school band director instilled the idea in my head way before I knew that I would become an Aggie.”

 

 


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How did you decide to become a student at North Carolina A&T State University?

My junior high school band director instilled the idea in my head way before I knew that I would become an Aggie.

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It wasn’t until two years after attending the University of the District of Columbia that I needed to get away from DC and gain the ultimate college experience.

 

What professors at North Carolina A&T State University left the most impression upon you as a student and/or person? What did they do that continues to mean so much to you to this day?

Dr. Henry was my academic advisor during my tenure at A&T, he was really the one who made it all possible or seem attainable.

 

keith-kirkland-north-carolina-a-&-t-state-university-dr-henry-acadmic-advisor-myhbcuinterviewImage Courtesy of NCATSU

 

Where were the spots to go to if you wanted to cuddle with your boy or girlfriend?

My room lol

 

What were the best restaurants on and near the campus? Which dishes do you enjoy the most?

Cookout….Cheddar style chicken and fries was my favorite meal

keith-kirkland-north-carolina-a-&-t-state-university-cookout-cheddar-style-chicken-myhbcuinterviewWhenever the opportunity presents itself we are definitely going to order the” Cheddar Style” Chicken with fries!

What were the chants heard most often at the sporting events?

Aggie Pride!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

 

Who was your College crush?

Portia Williams a member of the Alpha Phi chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha.

 

How did you overcome your nervousness about going to college?

I wasn’t really nervous

 

What was your major? and Why did you choose it?

Music was the major I chose to pursue. Music has always been a major part of my life thanks to all the teachers throughout grade school.

keith-kirkland-north-carolina-a-&-t-state-university-myhbcuinterview-music-majorPerfect picture – Image Courtesy of Middle Child New Media

 

What was your proudest moment @ North Carolina A&T State University?

The moment my department chair Dr. Henry told me that I was graduating and then the actual graduation ceremony when my name Keith A. Kirkland II was called.

 

What was your saddest moment @ North Carolina A&T State University?

When my grandmother passed away when I was at school. I wasn’t able to be with my family at that moment.

keith-kirkland-north-carolina-a-&-t-state-university-myhbcuinterview-ankh-ancestorsMuch respect to you and your family brother. Your grandmother’s spirit lives forever through and remember to spread her teachings and wisdom. Hotep! – Image Courtesy of AnkhPendant

 

What did you pledge? And why? And if not, why not?

I am became a member of Kappa Kappa Psi National Honorary Band Fraternity Incorporated in the Spring of 2004.


I chose this organization because i wanted to join an organization that had the same values and purposes I had and to align with my goals of becoming a band director.

 

How were you positively active on campus? (e.g. clubs, SGA, etc.)

I was a member of the Iota Zeta chapter of Kappa Kappa Psi and The DC Metro Aggie Club all four years that I was there.

 

What and where were the historical places on campus?

The A&T Four Statue

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If you could speak to those family members that have risen but that live forever through you, what words would you speak?

Thanks Nana for pushing me and my sister Brianna, you were truly an inspiration to us and why we have persevered through so many challenges.

 

When and how did you discover your passion in life?

When I was in High school my band director was the person I wanted to be like, play trombone like, and write music like. So I would say high school.

keith-kirkland-north-carolina-a-&-t-state-university-myhbcuinterview-trombonist-weston-sprottTrombonist Weston Sprott – Visit his website

 

If you could only speak two sentences to the youth coming after you what would you say?

Stay in school no matter what, there is no future without education and Stay Focused.

 

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05th Sep2011

Dexter Mullins – North Carolina A&T State University

by Staff

“….I definitely had many firsts at A&T. I had some of my best jobs while in school, I met my best friends, I took my first roadtrip, and I experienced my first HBCU homecoming, something I will never forget.

C/O 2010

Major: Journalism & Mass Communications

Visit His Website: www.DexterMullins.com

Personal Contacts:

 

How did you decide to become a student at North Carolina A&T State University?

My junior year in high school, I went on a black college tour in North Carolina. After seeing that there actually was a place in the world where I wasn’t the only black male in a classroom with a brain, I immediately decided that I wanted to apply to HBCUs. A&T stood out to me because of the beauty of the campus, the programs, and the people. When I got back to California, I did more research and discovered the history of the institution and the legacies so many of the alumni have left behind, and I was sold.

What professors at North Carolina A&T State University left the most impression upon you as a student and/or person? What did they do that continues to mean so much to you to this day?

I would definitely say that Emily Harris, Teresa Styles, and DeWayne Wickham have been some of the most influential professors in my life, although every professor I had at A&T impacted me in different ways. They all genuinely care about the learning of the students, not just a pay check or filling quotas.

I’ve never been pushed so hard, challenged as much, or encouraged to succeed as I was with them. I credit my success and my acceptance into Columbia University to the “tough love” and motivation they gave me. It’s rare that black students are accepted by mainstream American Universities as equal, and especially at Ivy League institutions. If it wasn’t for the consistent encouragement and challenging from these people, I wouldn’t have been nearly as successful. They mean everything to me. I still call, e-mail, or work with them to this day.

What is the story of your “experience” to date at Your HBCU given its heralded status as a stellar and prestigious institution?

My experience at A&T is unique. I tell everyone that college is exactly what you make of it, no matter where you go and if you want to give your university 100 percent, it will give itself unto you. I came to A&T and immediately felt as if a friend had taken me in. A lot of times, I think people go to college based on what they think the name of the school will do for them, without actually thinking about how little the school may care. What’s the point in going to a Yale or a Harvard if the professors will never actually learn your name, and you won’t have any resources to turn to if you are in a tough spot?

Because of how great my university made me feel, I felt the responsibility to get involved, give back and help to further the legacy of my institution. I didn’t even know all of the civil rights history of A&T until I actually started attending. From the beginning of my experience in August of 2006, to graduation on May 8, 2010, I was cultivated and groomed into the person I am. I got in touch with my heritage, gained a new appreciation for my black history and black culture, and lobbied for the rights of my people. I think every black student should go to an HBCU, so they can truly grow. I had the choice to go to 15 other institutions, but I chose to go to A&T and I’ve never regretted that decision.

But no matter who you talk to here on campus, there is no experience like Aggie Homecoming {Greatest Homecoming on Earth}. It feels like the entire east coast rides into Greensboro for the week. Nothing but memories to last you a lifetime.

Where were the spots to go to if you wanted to cuddle with your boy or girlfriend?

Haha, this is a funny question. People really don’t do a lot of “cuddling” in public, so I guess the best way to answer this would be to talk about good places to go on a date. A lot of good spots could be found in the downtown area, like at Cheesecake’s By Alex, or Center City Park for example. These were always nice places to go that weren’t so crowded. As far as cuddling…

What were the best restaurants on and near the campus? Which dishes do you enjoy the most?

Cheesecakes By Alex and Minj Grille are without question two of the best places to go in Greensboro. Cheesecakes is the best place to go for a late night coffee/dessert, or just a nice treat with someone. Minj has some of the best chicken wings in the city, and they’re huge! Also, on Tuesday and Thursday they sell the wings for a dollar.

What were the chants heard most often at the sporting events?

The most popular chant will always be Aggie Pride! But you have to say it right. There’s a significant voice inflection right in the middle, like this: AgGIE Pride! Other than that, most any chant the crowd starts everyone will know. Every year there would be new ones from the band or the spirit groups. The cheerleaders also had a lot of good ones.

Who was your College crush?

Haha I had a huge crush on my friend Jennifer Hill for a long time. But as we got closer it was clear that we had way too much fun together to ever really mess it up with a relationship. Besides, I was dating on and off with other people throughout the four years. We’re still friends to this day and I’m glad it worked out the way it did.

How did you overcome your nervousness about going to college?

A&T does an absolutely amazing job of making people feel welcome through their Office of Orientation and First Year Experience. By the time I left orientation, I had met friends (see Jennifer from previous question), handled most of my pre-college business, learned how to navigate the emphamis HBCU bureaucracy, and found my way around. When school started I wasn’t worried about a thing.

What was your major? and Why did you choose it?

I majored in Journalism and Mass Communications, because I’ve wanted to be a journalist since I was 14. I found an HBCU with a fully accredited program, a great legacy and good people. It was a no brainer.

What was been your proudest moment @ North Carolina A&T State University?

My proudest moment, oh wow. There are so many it’s hard to pick just one. I would have to say that it would have to be the day a new student came up to me and told me that I was the reason he decided to come to North Carolina A&T. My freshman year I decided I wanted to get involved and I immediately volunteered to be a tour guide. Since freshman couldn’t be paid first semester, I said I would do it for free because of my love for A&T. I became one of the most requested tour guides and I led some of the largest groups, sometimes 3 or 4 times a day. This one young man came to A&T during his spring break with his classmates and told me he was having a bit of trouble in school. I just told him that he had to believe in himself and refocus his priorities. Then I told him about how involved I was at A&T and all the opportunities I had been blessed with because of A&T. So when he came to speak to me, it was three years later and I was so proud of him. Not only had he managed to graduate with honors from high school, but he was also on track to finish his first semester with a 4.0. Seeing that I had a direct impact on someone was just amazing.

What was your saddest moment @ North Carolina A&T State University?

My saddest moment would definitely be when Dennis Hayle, a student and friend, was killed. To this day we still do not know what happened exactly, but there are people who do know and aren’t saying anything, which makes it even worse. You could ask anyone on campus or affiliated with A&T this same question and I would be willing to bet they would say the exact same thing.

What did you pledge? And why? And if not, why not?

I didn’t pledge for a few reasons. I certainly wanted to, but I just didn’t think I was ready the first time. I also found myself more and more involved with various organizations on campus, which yielded me a lot of responsibility and political clout/power on campus. I took my rolls seriously and it just didn’t seem fair to the people I represented to use my positions to serve only myself. I don’t regret not pledging, although I do think it would have been nice.

How were you positively active on campus? (e.g. clubs, SGA, etc.)

I definitely was. I was freshman class president and during my term our class pushed through more legislation and made more change on the fabric of campus as a class than any other before us. One such example would be our successful implementation of a small $5 yearly fee to all students that gave them completely unlimited access to every bus in the city and linked A&T with the Higher Education Area Transit, or HEAT, system. HEAT was a bus service that connected the 6 colleges in Greensboro and offered late night service for students thoroughout the city. The service picked students up from their apartments, the mall, or other places and took them all over the city. It also connected students to the main system and the service still runs. I also helped to hand design some of the routes.

I was also Editor in Chief of the yearbook, The Ayantee for 3 years. When I came to the yearbook office my freshman year in 2006, the school was still working on the yearbook from 2005. By the time I left the yearbook office in 2009, I had produced four yearbooks including the one from before I came. I also had completely restructured the way the books were laid out, and modernized the design.

From 2006-2009 I served as a senior delegate to the University of North Carolina Association of Student Governments on behalf of A&T. I was a committee chair for the government operations and community service division. During my time, I would have to say that I’m most proud of the legislation I pushed through for students across the entire state of North Carolina, including the Get Out The Vote funding of $2000 per campus for voter registration, the revival of Service North Carolina – a month long community service effort, and giving out the Eve Marie Carson award.

I was also a Resident Assistant. During my one year as an RA, I helped to lead a strike that helped to get the RA’s fairly compensated and correct policy problems in the way they were treated.

I’m most proud of my time as Editor in Chief of The A&T Register, the award-winning student newspaper of North Carolina A&T. My year as editor, we won 14 awards, including coming in as the second most influential student newspaper in North Carolina, and the second most influential HBCU newspaper nationwide. While winning the #2 spot may not seem like a great thing, I was proud of them because it felt like first and we were up against some really huge papers, like The Daily Tar Heel from UNC, the top rated student newspaper in the nation. To come in directly behind them was great. We also won first place for best investigative news, best design, and cemented our position as one of the top three student newspapers in the area of commentary and opinion. That was the most awards we had ever won in a single year. I also managed to nearly triple our online readership, and our circulation of 5000 print on campus went from sitting on newsstands for three days to being gone in nearly three hours. We also had unrivaled coverage of the historical opening of the Civil Rights Center & Museum in Greensboro, where the A&T Four started the sit-in movement at the Woolworth’s. We even got a letter from President Obama to include in our special 12-page tab of coverage. As a journalist, I was proud, and as a student, I was proud of the success of my student paper. It was one of my proudest years.

Where was the “yard” located?

The yard was behind the student union on election day, on the “strip” during the warm days of spring, and near the greek plots and the Holland Bowl.

What and where were the historical places on campus?

The entire campus is historical, but specifically, the Aggie Village memorial fountain in the middle of campus is extremely special. It is here that the old Scott Hall used to stand as the largest dormitory in the south, and it is also the site of the famous riot between A&T students and the national guard that resulted in the death of Willie Grimes in the 1960s. Grimes has a memorial behind the student union, and there are two monuments to the A&T Four, one behind the union, and one huge statue by the Dudley Memorial Building-The first building on A&T’s campus that burned down in a fire and was rebuilt. The Dudley building houses over 1 million worth of African art. There are so many more places.

Are there any ghost stories involving buildings or spots on campus?

No.

How many “firsts” did you have at college ? What were they? (e.g. first road trip, first job interview, first love, first “F or A”, etc.)


Haha, I won’t answer that “first love” question. I have to keep some things to myself. But I definitely had many firsts at A&T. I had some of my best jobs while in school, I met my best friends, I took my first roadtrip, and I experienced my first HBCU homecoming, something I will never forget.

If you could speak to those family members that have risen but that live-forever through you, what words would you speak?


This question doesn’t really make a lot of sense…

I think what you’re asking is what I would say to those I look up to in my family who have succeeded before me. I guess all I could say would be thank you, and that I really admire them.

When and how did you discover your passion in life?


When I started high school, I took a beginning journalism course. My teacher Mr. Pete LeBlanc, told us that journalists have the power to change the world. After that, I was hooked.

Whats your take on life (in the philosophical sense)?

This can best be described in a quote:

To find what you seek in the road of life, the best proverb of all is that which says: “Leave no stone unturned.” – Edward Bulwer Lytton

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