Kenia Cole, Hampton University- c/o 2015, Sport Management & Becoming a Pro-Athlete
Where are you from? Who introduced you to HBCUs?*
I am from Silver Spring, MD. I knew a few things about HBCUs because I had cousins who went to Bowie State University, but I did not know the actual difference between HBCUs and PWIs.
I played basketball in high school and my high school coach instructed me to send out some film to all of the Division I MEAC schools. Hampton (along with a few others) responded to me and came out and watched me play.
3X Mid Eastern Athletic Conference Champion
Why did you choose an HBCU over a pwi?*
I chose Hampton over two PWIs because I felt more at home at Hampton.
My visit was great. I went during a Battle of The Bay, which is HU vs. NSU and I had never been around so many people that looked like me outside of my family.
My high school was pretty diverse, so just being around other black people really made me feel comfortable.
What is the story of your "experience" at Your HBCU given its heralded status as a stellar and prestigious institution?*
As an athlete at Hampton, I had the opportunity to participate and compete with many Power 5 institutions.
We won the MEAC Championship several years in a row and I had the opportunity of playing on television a lot. We had a sense of swagger to us, with a hint of "boujie" that made us unique.
Wherever we were, people who we were and where we came from and I enjoyed embodying that.
"First time" experiences at your HBCU?*
Because I played basketball, I had the opportunity of traveling all over the United States.
We went to the US Virgin Islands for a Thanksgiving tournament which was a remarkable experience for myself and my teammates.
Who are the professors that have impacted your life in and out of the classroom? How did they do that?*
Dr. Mark Whitaker and Mr. Sharrieff DeJohnette.
Those two professors truly taught me the essence of working hard and doing things the right way. It's quite ironic.
What sports do/did you play at your HBCU? What positions?
I played basketball at Hampton, I was a point guard and a shooting guard and I wore #1.
Sports accomplishments in high school? at your HBCU? (records, medals, articles, et cetera)
At my HBCU, I am a 3X Mid Eastern Athletic Conference Champion. I experienced postseason play in all of my years of college. That is a tremendous accomplishment.
Under Graduates: 3,836
Post Graduates: 810
- Athletics: Hampton University competes in the NCAA Division I Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) and are members of the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference. Hampton University offers Basketball, Cross Country, Bowling, Golf, Football, Softball, Tennis, Track and Field, Lacrosse, Volleyball, Soccer, and Sailing.**In 2016, Hampton became the first and only HBCU to field a Division I men's lacrosse team. ESPN held a broadcast on campus preceding the inaugural game in Armstrong Stadium.**Hampton is the only HBCU with a competitive sailing team. RIVALS: Norfolk State University, Howard University.
- Notable Alumni: Alberta Williams King - 1924 - Mother of Martin Luther King Jr.** Robert S. Abbott - 1896 - Founder of The Chicago Defender** Percy Creuzot - 1949 - Founder of Frenchy's Chicken in Houston, Texas** Charles Phillips - 1986 - CEO of Infor; former President of Oracle Corporation** Booker T. Washington - 1875 - Founded Tuskegee University in Alabama** John T. Biggers - Harlem Renaissance muralist and founder of the Art Department at Texas Southern University** Leslie Garland Bolling - 1918 - Early 20th-century wood carver** Spencer Christian - Former weatherman for Good Morning America, 1986–1998** DJ Envy 1999 disc jockey and host of The Breakfast Club** Brandon Fobbs - 2002 - Actor; best known for his role in the film Pride** Kevin Frazier - Sports anchor and entertainment news anchor** Beverly Gooden - 2005 - Writer** Biff Henderson - Stage manager and personality on the Late Show with David Letterman** DJ Tay James - 2009 - Disc jockey for Justin Bieber** Dorothy Maynor - Concert singer** Wanda Sykes - 1986 - Comedian** A. S. (Doc) Young - 1941 - Sports journalist** Vanessa D. Gilmore - Federal Judge of the United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas** Charles Wesley Turnbull - 1958 - Former governor of the U.S. Virgin Islands** Douglas Palmer - 1973 - Mayor of Trenton, New Jersey** Ivory Lee Young Jr. - 1986 - City Councilmember with the Atlanta City Council District 3, Atlanta, Georgia 2002–2018** Stephanie Young - 2006 - Director of African American Outreach, Associate Director of Communications, The White House** Mary Jackson - 1942 - Pioneering African-American engineer for NASA** Susan La Flesche Picotte - 1886 - First Native American physician** Elisabeth Omilami - Chief Executive Officer of Hosea Feed the Hungry and Homeless** Mychal Denzel Smith - 2008 - Writer at The Nation, television commentator and author** Clara Byrd Baker - Educator, civic leader, and suffragette** Chris Baker - 2008 - Current NFL defensive tackle** Justin Durant - 2007 - Current NFL linebacker, Jacksonville Jaguars, Detroit Lions** Kenrick Ellis - Current NFL defensive tackle, New York Jets** Francena McCorory - 2010 - Track and field, NCAA 400m three-time champion** Kellie Wells - Track and field Olympic athlete; 100m hurdle bronze medalist, 2012**
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