Senior Adelia McKinley will represent Fort Valley State University as a 2018 HBCU Competitiveness Scholar, part of a White House Initiative on Historically Black Colleges and Universities initiative. She is one of 63 students from 54 HBCUs who received the initiative’s highest student recognition this year.
The agriculture economics student is a native of Jamaica but grew up in Riverdale, GA. Never shy about expressing her views, McKinley fully intends to use this opportunity as a platform for HBCU students to not only discuss issues important to their schools, but to also express to the nation the value they have received from their collegiate experiences. She credits her HBCU, FVSU, with helping her transform into the scholar and leader she is today. She was nominated for the opportunity by her advisor, Dr. Mohammed Ibrahim.
“We’ve been groomed,” she asserted. “We’ve learned to compete with students not just locally, but globally. We have professors who are here to make sure we’re accomplishing our goals and reaching our fullest potential. That’s something I really love about Fort Valley State.”
McKinley is not new to recognition. She has served as a class officer, as secretary of the Student Government Association, and a student senator. She participates with the FVSU faculty and staff on university-wide committees. She has received scholarships from the National Black Farmers Association, USDA, the FVSU Foundation and the Tom Joyner Foundation. McKinley was also selected to intern with agribusiness giant Land O’Lakes in Minnesota.
Comprised of undergraduate, graduate, and professional students, Competitiveness Scholars are recognized for successfully preparing to compete for top opportunities that improve long-term outcomes. Each student was nominated and endorsed by their institution’s president, which itself is an honorable mention. They were selected from among several highly distinguished HBCU students chosen based on their academic achievement, campus and civic involvement, and entrepreneurial ethos or “go-getter” spirit.
Competitiveness Scholars are recognized for the 2018-2019 academic year. Throughout this period, the initiative will provide outreach and engagement activities, as well as information and resources that can be disseminated to fellow students. The scholars are expected to fully take advantage of the opportunities provided, engage with one another, and showcase individual and collective talents across the HBCU spectrum.