Vicki Redmond has the invaluable experience of visiting many Black college campuses while growing up because her father was a referee for Black college sports. Her family would regularly go to games and attend holiday events, so Redmond regularly absorbed the power that is a thriving Black educational community.
In thinking about these times, Redmond shared: “I can remember my mother and her sister on Thanksgiving would go down to Virginia State College for Negroes to their homecoming activities and my father would prepare the Thanksgiving dinner for me and my brother. So the Black college and HBCU has been a part of my life experience from ever.
In moving toward her adulthood, Vicki Redmond knew it was HBCU all the way. She then matriculated to Cheyney University as a widow with three children and relishes the memories of overwhelming faculty support.
She fondly remembers admiring how the chair of the science department at the time, Dr. Overton, along with other thoughtful professors, would help her with her two older children as she kept the youngest with her during classes. Redmond taught her children that their family unit was a team and the staff of Cheyney reinforced that through their spirit and caring nature as they all conspired to help Redmond reach her goal.
Redmond conveyed that HBCUs are not only important because they were created for Black people to succeed and survive, but because they've unobjectionably become a staple in our culture. To let that die, is to let a building block in the house our of accomplishments falter and crumble.
She expressed that she gets giddy and excited just being in the presence of so many talented Black people, and being an active member of the Diaspora is important to her happiness. “I love being with my people. I love our shades. I love our languages. I love our energy. It makes me proud and it makes my adrenaline flow.”