Elitism or Pride?
"We take pride in what we do." -Coolio
Anyone who knows me, knows I LOVE QUEEN Bey! She is the epitome of a game changer and she can do no wrong in my eyes. She's also a fellow Houstonian so as far as I'm concerned we're sisters lol. It brought nothing but joy to my heart when I heard she was giving out a scholarship to women and one of the deserving institutions was no other than my alma mater of the illustrious Spelman College. 💁🏾There's been some backlash because some people feel that it's not fair that she chose only 4 schools and 2 of them were the top prestigious HBCUs (Historically Black Colleges and Universities): Spelman College and Howard University. There's been hurt feelings from students of other HBCUs feeling left out because they aren't being acknowledged or being extended such an amazing opportunity. Several articles I read were about the elitism in many HBCUs especially the top ranked ones. When I read these articles I initially didn't agree, but after thinking about it I realized there definitely is truth in the idea of elitism in the HBCU community.
Let's start with the background of an HBCU. They were created for the sole purpose of giving black people the opportunity of education that they were not afforded merely because they are black. We were thought so little of and weren't believed to deserve an education at PWIs (Predominantly white institutions). So in the true history of black people, we made a way out of no way, and so we founded HBCUs. Coming from the #1 HBCU [slight plug] there definitely is an arrogance that comes from being a Spelmanite. 💁🏾
With Beyonce's latest album Lemonade, she made it very clear that she's a proud black woman and we all should be celebrated. She also is a strong advocate for education and the arts. So with those two things being said, I personally think it makes complete sense that she chose to fund the top two ranked HBCUs.
Not only has Spelman held said title for the past decade, but it is an institution focused and dedicated to celebrating black women of the African Diaspora and making sure they graduate knowing they are beautiful, strong, intelligent, and never to back down merely because you are a woman. So to my earlier point, is there elitism within our society? Yes, 100%. But my response to you would be, show me someone that has accomplished greatness for a standard amount of time and didn't have a slight arrogance about them or an extra pep in their step. I personally haven't witnessed it. So with Beyoncé's extra emphasis on black culture and specifically black women; why wouldn't she choose Spelman College to be apart of her lineup of deserving institutions? Its motto is completely what Beyoncé is looking for. However, I am not discrediting other HBCUs by any stretch of the imagination because as far as I'm concerned any institution that is dedicated to educating the lives of minorities is a great school and worthy of praise. So personally do I think Spelman grads have an elitist attitude? Yes, somewhat, but I think above all it's just pride for their institution and its rich history. I know if I could do it again I'd choose Spelman every single time. So why wouldn't Beyoncé lol?