HBCU Students at White House

The White House Invites 32 HBCU Student Journalists to the 2023 HBCU Briefing

On February 23, 2023, the White House held a Press Briefing with HBCU student journalists and Senior Advisor for Public Engagement Keisha Lance Bottoms featuring Vice President Kamala Harris. 

Along with the Director of Alumni Affairs, Mr. JamesAaron Pierre, I traveled to Washington, DC, to join Vice President Harris and Senior Advisor Keisha Lance Bottoms, alongside 31 other HBCUs, to ask questions regarding HBCUs. 

Senior Advisor Bottoms said, “this is the coolest thing I have done since I’ve been at the White House, and I am so excited to see all of the HBCU students in the White House.” Senior Advisor Keisha Lance Bottoms is an HBCU graduate from Florida A&M University majoring in Journalism. Mrs. Bottoms said, “I didn’t get to come to the White House until I became mayor. This is an extraordinary opportunity that you all have today; I am very proud and so excited for you all.” 

Florida A&M University student Kyla Hubbard, a third-year graduating Broadcast Journalism major, was the first student to ask, “As we know, some legislators in Florida are targeting diversity equity and inclusion funding in our universities. The efforts of neighboring schools like FAMU and Florida State University are being compared when 

the initial funding differs drastically between the schools. Many teachers and students are concerned with what this means for culture, education, and visibility as well. What does this proposed legislation mean for the future of HBCUs? How is your administration ensuring that we will be protected? 

Senior Advisor Bottoms said, “It’s frightening in all honesty, I have been very hesitant to speak about my experience at FAMU AND Black studies at FAMU in fear that FAMU would be targeted, but the BidenHarris administration have been very intentional in funding for HBCUs and making sure that HBCU voices are heard, also stating why elections are very important.” 

Before Vice President Harris left us, she offered advice and insight on why journalists are important. Referencing that the world is counting on us student leaders and journalists to help continue to educate the people of our country and our world about who we are as Americans. We, as students, are required to lead and lead in the best way possible. 

Overall, Washington, DC, was a fantastic experience. I would not have had this opportunity if it weren’t for Miles College. I am beyond thankful that I had the chance to be in a room with talented student journalists and some of the world’s most powerful leaders.” 

Miles College is celebrating its 125th Anniversary this year, and what a milestone it is for us. This was an opportunity of a lifetime for me, and I’m grateful to have represented my College. My Miles College Family and I are thankful to the Biden-Harris administration for their inclusion and development of the nation’s HBCUs, especially at Miles College.

Photo Credit: The White House