That’s right, it’s my return to the ‘HILL’. Howard University has an energy that I haven’t experienced before. My last visit, I was honored and a little dazed to be in the same space where so much history has taken place. Howard University (HU) is known as the “Cradle of Black Greek Civilization”. The nickname was given because 5 of 9 BGLO’s were founded at HU. The following are a small sample of what I found the last time I visited. I can’t wait to see whats waiting for me this time!While at HU, I spent some time in the Moorland-Spingarn Research Center and found some AMAZING images in their archives. The above image is from the ‘The Bison’, HU’s yearbook. They were extremely nice for allowing me to work with them on finding images for my project. Here, the new Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc. pledges, Archonians, line up outside of Rankin Chapel at HU in 1987. This practice was common at HU. During the first Sunday of the month, new pledges would line up and march to the center of the campus to spit information publicly to the campus community. Needless to say that 1987 was and is a lot different from 2011.
One of the things I hope to do while at HU is photograph some Founders Day celebrations. Both the ladies of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. and Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. were Founded this week (Jan.15,1908 & Jan.13, 1913 respectfully). I will be meeting with both groups of ladies as I travel to Washington. If there is one thing I was taught during my journey of becoming an Alpha Man, it was to respect EACH and EVERY Black Greek Organization in existence. If you have done any bit of research on these organizations, you know that there is a reason and benefit to having the brotherhoods and sisterhoods which extend around the world.
This was obviously the first ime I had seen line numbers reach all the way up to the hundreds. At Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) it is not uncommon to see new member initiations reach the hundreds on a yearly basis. While all BGLOs offer both Fall and Spring initiation, currently at Howard, only Spring lines are initiated. It is one of my goals to photograph a probate in the spring. I love doing what I do because I get to meet so many great people! I will post more images when I come back from HU.
Concrete and statue monuments give HU a dose of character. Look around the campus and you will find a number of special monuments erected to represent the D9 to the fullest. It is one of the things I hope to focus on while I am there Thursday-Sunday. I will be taking the NPHC photograph on Saturday morning, Jan.15, 2010 on main campus and hope everyone can come out to say whats up!!! Stay tuned family!
I should be online at HU. Follow my Twitter updates @Beyondthisplace and on Facebook.com/beyondthisplace this SATURDAY!!! 🙂 Shout out to the wonderful people who have already made my experience rewarding.
I recently came across your blog and just from these few stories, I can see and feel the passion you have for the Divine 9 and keeping them relevant in todays society. As a proud member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., I commend you on your efforts and look forward to future stories.
Just as the author stated, I am researching the frats and sorority monuments in the “Valley” to provide ‘accuracy’ of thel information I am incorporating in my story “Kickin it in O.N.C (On the Yard at Howard), a fictional tale of college angst, adjusting to life away from home and apprectiating the diaspora the we are. Though dated in the year 1995 -1996, this tale is one of past, present and future. I am a Morehouse man, retired Navy but have found memories of visiting Howard in 1979, while I was stationed at Naval Medical Center, Bethesda and witnessing my first Greek show. I have also been on the campus to participate in the graduation ceremonies of the Medical Assisting students I was privilege to teach while I was an Instructor at Everest College Arlington Campus. This research has truly enlightened and introduced me to the many areas of the campus that I was not aware of. Thank you immensely Jarrad. I hope to have this tale published before the beginning of Summer.
Jake, I appreciate and respect YOU for holding up the aims of your organization. Good brothers and sisters is what keeps Greek Life relevant. We need more man. More people who care, thats all. Keep pushing my brother!