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Navigating the HCBU Homecoming Experience

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Spelman chapter.

After the hype of New Student Orientation week, and my first Market Friday at Spelman all anyone could talk about leading up to the month of October was Homecoming. Specifically, what outfits everyone was buying for the events, what parties to attend, and how to prepare for all the Spelman alumnae to be roaming the campus. Being a freshman at Spelman during SpelHouse homecoming is probably one of the biggest stressors of the fall semester, that being said here are my top three tips to navigating the homecoming experience at a Historically Black College.

  1. Dress up and look cute for each and every event you attend, you never want to be the sister that’s underdressed. But make sure you’re comfortable, you’re the one wearing the outfit after all.

  2. Have fun and go to events but be safe!! Never walk alone anywhere, always keep an eye on your friends and your cups! 

  3. Buy your tickets for all of the events held during the week that you want to go to ahead of time.

As a first-year student the closer homecoming got last year, the more stress came over me. Questions like “how I was supposed to be getting my homework done during the week,” “which events was I supposed to attend, and which ones we’re I supposed to steer clear of?” But the biggest question I had last year was “where to shop for super cute new homecoming outfits on my broke college student budget?” It is because of this that I compiled a list of super inexpensive places to shop for homecoming on a budget.

  1. Shein: I would rate this site a 10/10 but make sure you check reviews on items before you buy them!! They have pretty fast shipping and delivery so if you need to wait until you get that homecoming money from your family, your clothes should get to you within a week!

  2. Fashion Nova: I can’t speak much on fashion nova being that I haven’t bought from them. But I have many friends who have, and they love it. There’s always some type of deal or sale and they also have pretty fast shipping and delivery!

  3. Pretty Little Thing: I would give this site a 7/10. I’ve only ordered once, and it was cute but not the cheapest if you’re on a budget. Shipping and delivery is okay, if I were you I would just plan ahead when ordering.

  4. Zaful: I would rate Zaful a 6/10. Shipping and delivery aren’t the fastest I would give them at least three weeks to a month. But clothes are pretty true to size, I would still look at the reviews and comments before buying!!

  5. If worse comes to worse, find a thrift store or consignment store!!  Check Pinterest on how to make some cute clothes, more often than not the clothes will be cheaper and all you need to spice them up is a Youtube video and a pair of scissors.

All-in-all homecoming, SpelHouse homecoming specifically, is possibly the best and worst week of your life. Last year, the week was a dream, but I was glad it ended when it did. If I could give an incoming freshmen I would say, find the events you’re interested in going to before buying tickets (you won’t make it to everything, you have to sleep sometime), finish all of your major assignments before the week starts, and stay on top of your work. Navigating the HBCU Homecoming scene is difficult for any first-timer, all I can say is trust your guts and most importantly, have fun! 


My name is Amarah Gray and currently I am a sophomore at the Spelman College. I am an English major Secondary Education minor. Upon graduating from the illustrious Spelman College I plan to teach high school English and become a high school principal in hopes of one day becoming the superintendent of schools. My passions include educating others, financial literacy education, and educational policies. I enjoy writing as a creative outlet which is why I am super excited to have joined the HER Campus chapter at my college. I hope to bring a fresh perspective to the HER Campus Spelman College chapter.