HBCUs vs. PWI: Which Is Right For You?


Remember trying to decide which college you wanted to attend? There are numerous options to choose from like Ivy League schools, religious based universities, all gender colleges to Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU). Ever had to choose if you wanted to be in an environment where you were the minority or majority? With this constant debate between HBCUs and Predominantly White Institutions (PWIs), it forces you to question if you will receive the top job offers if you graduate from an HBCU or “prestige”, predominantly white college.

As it was my turn to decide which college I would attend, I applied to the top rated schools except for a HBCU. My grandmother attended Grambling State University, my mother graduated from Dillard University and Prairie View A & M, so why wouldn’t I want to attend an HBCU. My dad took me to the Bayou Classic every year when I was younger and you know everyone comes for the halftime performance. So I’ve been around the HBCU experience throughout my life. Once again, why would I not apply to an HBCU? Constantly hearing that I wouldn’t get hired over a PWI student due to my degree being from a black college, I actually started to feed into the hearsay of attending an HBCU. Whether an African-American student attends a PWI or HBCU school, they will experience some type of struggle due to the college they choose.

During the HBCU vs. PWI battle on Twitter, some students from PWIs express that having a “4.0 [GPA] at an HBCU is not equivalent to a 4.0 at a rigorous PWI.” How can someone make such a bold statement? I have not seen any research showing that receiving a 4.0 GPA from a PWI is better from an HBCU. So it comes down to how do you want to reminisce about your college years? When you look back on your time spent at college how do you picture yourself in the student center?

Also, let’s not bash black students who attend PWI because it always seems like they are the bad guys. Instead of attacking each other on which type of school is better, there needs to be unity among African-American students. To the outside world, we may have a degree but they will still see color. Look at our former president, Barack Obama, who was constantly attacked by politicians though he graduated from the prestige Harvard Law School. The decision to attend a PWI or HBCU is based on the individual’s needs and wants. College is one of the best times of your life and at the end of the day, we all have a common goal of obtaining a degree.

Originally blogged on CampusLately

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