Lifestyle | May 15th, 2020

FAMU Students Virtually Welcome FAMU ’24

By: Xavette Allen
FAMU Students Virtually Welcome FAMU ’24

By now, it should be no secret that FAMU’s class of 2024 is planning to take the hill by storm this upcoming fall. On May 1, for their virtual National Decision Day, they showcased themselves on various platforms, letting the world know that Florida A&M University is the only HBCU for them. Truly publicizing their rattler pride, the hashtag #FAMU24 was marked “trending” on Twitter throughout Florida. 

Despite their overwhelming urge to take on the hill, it cannot go unnoticed that before they were incoming rattlers, they were high school seniors. 

Seniors who were not gifted with the experience of prom —or the afterparties. Seniors who never got to walk the stage and acknowledge that they have made it to the next milestone in their life. Seniors who have waited for their senior year to experiences those moments that create long-lasting memories, but were forced to deal with the realities of COVID-19 and are entering the real world sooner than expected. 

The turn of events regarding COVID-19 has affected everyone, but in times of peril established FAMU students are finding ways to welcome FAMU ‘24 into the FAMUly. 

Using social media as their platform, Instagram, Twitter, Youtube, and even Facebook have been flooded with scholarships, giveaways, and advice to aid these incoming freshmen into this new chapter of their lives. 

There have been numerous initiatives set forth by current students, and even incoming students, to capture the hearts of FAMU ‘24, as well as contribute to their financial needs. 

Tianna Battles, a rising first-year Nursing student, has put together a $500 scholarship out of her own funds to help her class with the financial burden of college.

“By giving this scholarship I am simply fulfilling my job as a child of God,” said Battles.“My goal is to help at least one incoming freshman get acclimated into college life at Florida A&M University without the financial burden of the expenses that come with it.” 

Tianna Battles Scholarship. Photo courtesy Instagram (@tiannabattles)

She believes that this is about more than what you have, but what you can offer as well. She said that “giving kindness, love, and positivity” is what truly matters. Selfless in nature, Tianna Battles has already begun to set not only an example but a standard of altruism as well. 

“On behalf of FAMU24, I would like to tell the rest of FAMU to brace themselves for the way that we are about to shake the hill,” said Battles on the resilient nature of her class. “We, as graduates of the class of 2020, are going to bring an abundance of resilience and strength to our university. ”

On the other side of the university’s welcoming nature, some have already received a taste of what it means to be a rattler and are willing to share their knowledge. 

Second-year Business Administration student Sha’Riauna Campbell has been spotted throughout social media hosting FAMU apparel giveaways for those in the class of 2024.

“I really hope that [the giveaway] gets them connected with upperclassmen here at FAMU and alumni through social media,” said Campbell. “I hope it will allow them to begin becoming better acclimated with FAMU culture, as well as give them the opportunity to step outside their comfort zones and display their creativity.”

Rattler Apparel Giveaway presented by Sha’Riauna “Shari” Campbell. Photo courtesy Instagram (@cinnamonapples_)

Campbell says that when she announced her attendance to FAMU last summer, many reached out to her to make her transition smoother. She remembers how that made her feel and she hopes she can have that same effect, if not greater, on this next set of rattlers. 

Campbell wishes to teach the incoming students what it truly means to be a rattler. For Campbell, “To be a Rattler means to be resilient, to be supportive, and innovative.”

Her piece of advice to FAMU 2024 is to be prepared because college can be overwhelming. However, if she could describe the FAMUly in one word, it would be “supportive.”

Most of all, these scholarships and giveaways would not be possible without the participants who have taken the time to prove that they are fit to reap the benefits.

First-year Political Science and Psychology student Ariel Burks has become a recipient of one of the apparel giveaways on Twitter. 

Though swayed to participate by the simplicity of the raffle, Burks was surprisingly gratified by the outpour of support.

“Winning gave me a sense of security,” said Burks. “It showed me that there are people out there rooting for FAMU 24 and welcoming us with open arms and I really appreciate that.”

Burks said that she was extremely thankful because she’s aware that those orchestrating these giveaways are doing this out of the kindness of their own hearts. The motivation behind it all makes it so heartwarming and impactful for her. 

Through these acts of kindness, a ripple effect has occurred that has turned a series of devastating events to an unimaginably warm welcome for FAMU 24.