It’s Okay If You Don’t Like HBCU’s.

There’s no tasteful way to say this. I didn’t like my HBCU experience. Choosing to hold that in for the last eleven years is the equivalent of hiding any other trauma. You think its your fault. You don’t want people to be mad at you. You don’t want to be the anomaly. But what if I’m not? It took me six years to graduate and I was completely clueless. I feel like no one talks about it. The experience can be hard. The first year I spent getting high and doing absolutely nothing. I failed English twice and then became an English major only to fail it twice more before taking it seriously. In the second year I gained fifty pounds and became a dorm room recluse for over half of the semester. During the third year I had a nervous breakdown and was suspended from school for writing a twenty-one page manifesto about my experience. Year four seemed a bit better I met a new friend and even lost a good bit of weight. Year five I had another nervous breakdown because said friend found different friends and fell in love with someone that wasn’t me. Year six was spent working my ass off because I had been in college way too long and needed to graduate. In all of it I felt completely alone.

The hardest part of the whole experience was the social construct. I won’t lie I did connect with a few people that I occasionally speak with in present day. Some others are my Facebook friends and it’s nice to see their lives play out through social media. But I got nothing from the HBCU college experience. My former school’s slogan is “You can get anywhere from here.” I’m currently unemployed and sleeping on my mother’s couch. If I could do it over I would not have attended my HBCU. Let’s be clear I am a proud Black woman who loves Black culture, but I’ve learned that environments foster emotions and actions. If you don’t feel good get out. Don’t spend six years like I did trying to make a metaphorical shoe fit that was too small.

My mom used to tell me that in the end I wouldn’t know half the people that I attended college with. She was right. What’s sad is that I spent so much time and energy worried that I would. Now I can never get that time back. The thing is at least for me, you only get one life per lifetime. I no longer want to waste it. In the end it’s impossible to please everyone. That’s why I had to write this post. Yet, ultimately I’m sure there’s still more for me to look forward to in the future. I am also certain that my the degree will benefit my career at some point in time. But I will never forget the trials and tribulations that got me to the degree. I can confidently say I did not like my HBCU experience. Thanks for stopping by and let’s talk again soon.


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