Why is it that when we African Americans don't attend an HBCU that your family wanted you to go means you're 'disowning your blackness,' or that an HBCU isn't professional enough for you. The reason why I didn't go to an HBCU, which I do regret at least considering it as an option, is because what I had learned is that most are business schools and my major has nothing to do with business (which was just a stereotype.) My major is anthropology (and Forensics,) so trying to branch out and learn new cultures and how people interact with others is what I want to do for a living.
But first, let me tell a little bit about myself... I am an African American who is from Duluth, Georgia, where I went to school and was surrounded on a daily basis by mainly Blacks, Hispanics, Asians, and small groups of White people.
What brought about this thought was what happened a few weeks back when Ole Miss had all the marches and disputes over the Confederate Flag on campus. What I didn't expect was to see all the tweets on Twitter criticizing the black students that chose to attend an HWI, Historically White Institution, and not an HBCU. This isn't really surprising or the first time for me and most other black students at a PWI that has been criticized or even disowned.
I feel like for me, attending an HBCU is a way to feel like the majority, but I realized that in the real-world majority of the time I will be working with and for people that are not like me. There are increasingly positive benefits by attending a PWI: it means I am better preparing to learn about different races and cultures and how to interact with other people different from me just by living and taking the same classes as someone different. And being at Ole Miss where we have people all the way from Chicago, Florida, Texas, and even some out of the country!
I didn't want to go out into the real world ignorant about other people's culture even if we have the technology to just learn at home while in bed. I wanted to experience something different and real and see for myself how other cultures interact.