More than 40,000 return to campus
(Black PR Wire) As homecoming season ends at historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs), some of these institutions are celebrating significant milestones. At Spelman and Morehouse colleges more than 40,000 participants from around the country descended upon the Atlanta campuses during the weekend of Oct. 20-23. It was the first in-person homecoming event after the two-year pandemic shut down – drawing its largest attendance ever. From the game, tailgate and the parties, a record-breaking number of alumni, students, and guests spent time catching up on campus and personal affairs, enjoying food and fellowship, making donations, visiting with students, and exploring what is new.
“Morehouse is a special place. It helped me get a clear sense of my vocation, and I met some of the most important people in my life during my time there,” said platinum sponsor Dr. Eddie Glaude, C’89, author of the new book, Begin Again: James Baldwin’s America and its Urgent Lessons. “Homecoming affords us a chance to reconnect and to share memories—to leave the pressures of the world behind, if just for a moment, as eat, drink, and laugh together. It helps replenish the spirit and we can return home with a little more energy to tackle the world. That is why I did not hesitate to become a sponsor.”
It took intensive collaboration to organize the return of this in-person event after the two-year pandemic hiatus. For example, the SpelHouse C’88 and 89 welcomed classmates back to a joint tailgate experience that raised the presentation bar. A modern trailer rendered with pub flair and dual-sided serving, large TV monitors and two restrooms served as an anchor for a larger living room-setting with wide, cozy couches, charging stations under a huge canopy to keep the crowd cool. Nationally known, Atlanta-based phenomenon Kemit was the featured DJ for the specially curated experience.
"After being deprived of the opportunity to experience SpelHouse Homecoming since 2019, it was important to really think through how best to design our outdoor space to facilitate a flow to optimize fellowship without creating bottlenecks or over-crowding,” noted Maria Maxie Whitfield, C’88. “The C’88 and C’89 SpelHouse tailgate committee was steadfast in its commitment to host an optimal experience that would exceed expectations.”
Supporters of the SpelHouse C’88 and C’89 Homecoming experience include platinum sponsors include Ronald Sullivan, C’89 and Carmen Shirley, C’89; silver sponsors Bruce Riggins, C’88 (Ciceros’ Moving), Malcolm May, C’89, T-Shirts To Go; and bronze sponsors Rhetta Andews, C’89; Tony Laurent, C’90, Muscle and Bone-NY; Oz Nesbitt, AEE Productions and The Social Box.