by Aisha Bowen
HBCUs across the country teach their students to be self-sufficient and self-sustaining. To build these values, HBCUs provide opportunities for students—and surrounding community members—to buy and sell their own products. Thus, today’s Monday Morning MSI Line Up highlights 4 HBCUs with community entrepreneurship opportunities.
1) Spelman College (HBCU)—Atlanta, GA
Every Friday of the week, Spelman College Student Government Association sponsors what they call “Market Friday” for its students and surrounding community members. Vendors sell things such as jewelry, books, clothing, and paintings. Registered student organizations are only charged $10 for vendor tables, and over 300 students from the AUC (Spelman, Morehouse, and Clark Atlanta) attend each week! In addition to selling products, there is always live music/entertainment and great food!
2) Savannah State University (HBCU)—Savannah, GA
Savannah State Farmers Market
The Savannah State Farmers market was established in 1953 to allow local farmers to sell produce, vegetables, flowers and other healthy products from their own trucks to students and neighbors for a low price. The Farmer’s Market provides a space to support local Black businesses, which a key piece of self-sufficiency. The recent changes in agricultural trade have threatened the livelihood of Savannah State Farmers Market, so to learn more about how you can help, click here!
3) Alabama A&M University (HBCU)—Huntsville, AL
Family Farm and Fleece Day
Alabama A&M’s Family Farm and Fleece Day debuted in 2013. The event is free, open to students and the public, and includes “exhibits, crafters and painters, a benefit auction, farmers market, vendors, door prizes, baking contest and sales, and live music” (source).
This one day event also offers classes in soap making, knitting, and drop spindling (source).
4) Howard University (HBCU)—Washington, D.C.
Howard University Homecoming
Howard University’s homecoming is one of the most epic events the campus each year. In addition to the live entertainment and alumni connections, local Black businesses—both students and community members—come to sell their products during Yardfest each Friday. These products range from mouthwatering soul food and Caribbean cuisine to natural hair products and student clothing lines.
Know of more HBCUs that provide entrepreneurship opportunities? Share them in the comments below!