4 MSIs near Travel + Leisure’s Best Towns for the Holidays

by Larry McDaniel Jr.

It is that time of the year when holiday pomp and circumstance take over cities and towns across the nation. As students, staff, and faculty travel home (or stay put in their college towns), they will find themselves welcomed to a host of holiday activities, pop-up markets, and other beautiful wonderland spectacles. Today’s Monday Morning MSI Line Up looks at Minority Serving Institutions near Travel + Leisure’s “Best Towns for the Holidays.”

1) California State University (HSI)—Monterey Bay, CA

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California State University, Monterey Bay is only 10 miles down the coast from Carmel-by-the-Sea, a beach town on California’s peninsula. The town is most known for its cottage-like hotels, art galleries, pristine beaches, and breath-taking sunsets. In addition, during the holiday season, Carmel-by-the-Sea transforms and lights up the sky with holiday lights. Students from Cal State, Monterey Bay can enjoy a range of events, from performing arts and cultural events, to enjoying the annual tree lighting ceremony.

2) Bowie State University (HBCU)—Bowie, MD

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Bowie State University resides only 20 miles from Annapolis, Maryland. For those in the D.C., Maryland, Virginia area, you may be familiar with the famed Eastport Yacht Club Parade of Lights that takes place yearly on the Annapolis Harbor. Students from Bowie State can enjoy this holiday festivity and cap off the night by enjoying the downtown restaurants and bars, who usually offer holiday specials during the event.

3) Community College of Denver (HSI)—Denver, CO

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What better way to spend the holidays and escape the pressures of academia than to play in the snow? The Community College of Denver  is 3.5 hours  from Aspen, CO, which is close in terms of access to snowy mountains. Aspen is decked out with holiday cheer and offers a plethora of free and affordable holiday activities. Students can take snowy night hikes, revel in the torchlight parade and fireworks, and/or sled down powdery slopes.

4) Francis Marion University (PBI)—Florence, SC

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For many, Myrtle Beach, SC, is known as a vacation destination along the Atlantic coast; however, during the holiday season it becomes one of the most beautiful holiday cities in the South. Francis Marion University is 61 miles away, providing students with relatively easy access to the Tree Festival, Night of a Thousand Candles, and the holiday-themed boardwalk.

Know any other holiday destinations near Minority Serving Institutions? Share them in the comments!

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