Apply for the White House HBCU All Star Program


Students, apply for the White House Initiative on Historically Black Colleges and Universities All-Star Program

The appointment period will last approximately one year, and during this time students will serve as ambassadors of the White House Initiative on Historically Black Colleges and Universities by providing outreach opportunities and communications to their fellow students about the value of education and the Initiative as a networking resource. Through social media, personal and professional relationships with community-based organizations, student will share promising and proven practices that support opportunities for all young people to realize their educational and career potential. The program will provide an opportunity to participate in regional and national events, as well as, web chats with Initiative staff and other professionals from a wide range of disciplines that support a spirit of engagement and personal and professional development.
1. Nominee must be a current undergraduate, graduate, or professional student at a Historically Black College or University (HBCU). Student must be enrolled for the 2015-2016 fall semester. View HBCU Listing by State
2. Only complete applications will be accepted. This includes signed nomination form, unofficial transcripts, short essays, resume and endorsement letter. Review Process
3. Submissions entered past the due date will not be acknowledged.

Applications must be submitted as one PDF to by
Friday, April 22, 2016, 11:59pm EST.

The Review Process
The nomination review process at The White House Initiative on HBCUs is holistic, starting with your unofficial college transcript and also considering your involvement, leadership roles, essay, and endorsement.

The most important and most telling part of your application for nomination to The White House Initiative on HBCUs is your essay. When we evaluate your essay, we look closely at your essay, recommendations and resume of employment and co-curricular activities. These pieces tell your unique story beyond your academic achievements and paint the picture of who you are as a person and what you can bring to the community of The White House Initiative on HBCUs and the HBCU All Star program. Think carefully about what you want to share about yourself and who you feel could write the best recommendation for you. We urge you to take advantage of the opportunities within the application to detail all of your involvements and accomplishments.

Your completed nomination application to The White House Initiative on HBCUs is the best representation of who you are and what makes you a great candidate for nomination. If we can be of any assistance in your nomination process, or you have further questions about the way we review applications, please let us know. You can e-mail your questions to, or call our office at (202) 453-5634 to speak with the program manager.

Evaluation of the Complete Package

The unofficial transcript is an important piece of the review process at The White House Initiative on HBCUs. With each transcript, our nomination panel will take a close look at a student’s current enrollment status, curriculum and grades achieved. The grades that a student has achieved are considered hand-in-hand with that student’s curriculum.

Common Application Essay
The Common Application requires all applicants to complete one essay. The essay is an important piece of your application as it allows you to reveal something meaningful outside of the academic realm to the committee on nomination. The Common Application provides one broad essay prompt for you to answer.

At The White House Initiative on HBCUs, the nomination staff uses the essay in two ways: to learn more about you on the personal level and to get a sense of your writing ability. From your essay, we hope to gain an understanding of what issues are important to you and the things you are passionate about. In the strongest essays we receive each year, we also receive a glimpse of the student’s personality, and have a better understanding of the student’s personal fit to the White House Initiative on HBCUs community.

A student’s ability to express himself or herself in writing is important to the committee on nomination. Remember that spelling and grammar “count,” and you should work to make sure that your essay is well-written and well-presented.

Letters of Recommendation
Letters of recommendation play an important role in our holistic application review process at The White House Initiative on HBCUs. For freshman applicants, we require two (2) letters of recommendation: one from a school counselor or college advisor, and the other from a teacher in an academic discipline.

The recommendation from the school counselor provides helpful context of the student’s four-year high school career, ideally bringing to light things about the student that may not be apparent from simply looking at the high school transcript. Counselors are often able to provide useful context for the student’s academic performance, and explain any special circumstances (i.e. schedule conflicts, personal situations, or medical issues) that may have arisen during the high school career. The counselor recommendation also helps us to understand where the student stands in relation to his or her high school classmates, both inside and outside of the classroom.

Applicants may send an additional letter of recommendation from someone other than a teacher who knows the applicant well outside of the classroom. Each year, we receive helpful letters of recommendation from coaches, advisors, mentors, and managers at students’ places of employment. We welcome these recommendations as they help the committee on nomination to learn more about who a student is beyond the classroom.

The application review process at The White House Initiative on HBCUs is holistic, and one of the important factors our nomination staff will consider is your resume of co-curricular activities. We are proud of PC’s active and vibrant campus community, and seek to invite new students who have demonstrated strong involvement beyond the classroom.

When the nomination committee reviews your co-curricular activities, it is important to remember that we are much more interested in the quality of your involvement rather than the quantity. Instead of looking for the student with the longest list of activities during high school, we are more interested in commitment and dedication to activities, and leadership roles that a student has held. Two or three activities that a student has been committed to and taken on a leadership role in will have a more significant impact on the nomination committee than a lengthy list of activities that a student has only shown “surface-level” involvement with.

Remember, too, that the activities you write about in your application need not be limited to your high school environment. Involvement with a community organization, church group, or part-time job represents a significant amount of time after school for many students, and we encourage you to share these experiences with us on your application as well. If you have held a part-time job, please share with us the amount of time you have worked each week, and whether you worked during the school year or the summer (or both!). This information about your involvement beyond your high school campus helps the nomination committee to develop a more complete picture of who you are on the personal level as we complete the review of your application.


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