Coming to Howard University is like going to nowhere else in the world. Howard is honestly one of a kind, an experience that cannot be replicated. Part of the reason for this uniqueness is that Howard IS a HBCU (historically black college or university); however, this distinction is not all that makes Howard unique. Howard distinguishes itself from other HBCUs in many different ways. First of all, Howard considers itself the Mecca of all HBCUs as seen by the dominating presence of one of Howard’s mottos “It’s Lonely At the Top” scrawled all over Howard paraphernalia. Howard also earns much of its distinction because of its status as the ONLY HBCU in the nation’s capitol. Therefore, when coming to Howard for the first time, freshmen may have many mixed emotions about coming to such a new, distinct setting. Many may be excited about coming to the “big city” to attend the Mecca of all black schools. However, a school of such distinction like Howard is not something to which freshman can relate any past schools or experiences. Therefore, freshmen are not only excited when they arrive at Howard but also anxious about all o the brand new, original experiences that they are going to partake in. In some cases, freshmen might be falsely worried about the stereotypes of black culture at Howard especially considering the fact that it is in the less classy part of D.C. Often, they worriedly think of questions whose roots are anchored in negative, stereotypical thoughts and beliefs about black people. It is unfortunate that these questions are often discussed among the former classmates, teachers, and other associates of the Howard University freshmen.
“Isn’t it like some weird false reality there?”
“Are you going to be getting a legit education?”
“Are there any people besides black people there?”
“Do girls dress up like every day?”
“Are there homeless people everywhere? Do they come in the buildings?”
“Are have prostitutes lounging around the buildings after my night classes?”
“Are there nonstop parties?”
Though some of these questions may be anchored in a small degree of truth, they are far from Howard’s true reality. Howard students want what most other college students want: to learn and earn a meaningful degree while making lasting connections with peers and professors. So, when freshmen come to the great Mecca, it is the hope of HerCampus-Howard that they concern themselves more with what color scheme they want for their rooms and whether or not to buy recyclable notebooks and glitter pens and less with trite, unconstructive, and nonsensical fears.