March 4, 2014 -A Fort Valley State University student made the cut for a national list that featured the best and brightest scholars from Historically Black Colleges and Universities across the nation. The White House Initiative on Historically Black Colleges and Universities (WHIHBCU) named FVSU English Major Elijah Porter as one of 75 HBCU All-Stars. Porter also is currently interning in the Office of Legislative Counsel at the State Capitol in Atlanta, where he serves as a resolution writer and legislative aid. He is the first from FVSU to be hired for this internship position.
“Engaging with the next generation of leaders who will graduate from HBCUs and go on to make meaningful contributions to society is crucial to the success of our community, our country and our global competitiveness,” said George Cooper, executive director of the WHIHBCUs. “It is a privilege to announce these 75 students who have demonstrated a commitment to their communities, and we look forward to working with them as partners in advancing President Obama’s college completion goal.”
In addition to his current internship, Porter will serve as an ambassador of the White House Initiative for the next year. His activities will include attending regional events and web chats with Ivory Toldson, deputy director of the WHIHBCUs. Forty-five women and thirty men were selected as All-Stars.
Porter is currently a junior pursuing his bachelor’s degree in English. The student also is a Blue Machine Marching Band drum major. Additionally, the scholar is president of the FVSU Toastmasters Club, a Mr. Delta Gent, and a writing consultant. Additionally, Porter is a Thurgood Marshall College Fund Scholar, HOPE Scholar, TRIO Scholar and a mentor. The student is an active member of the Alpha Lambda Delta National Honor Society and Kappa Kappa Psi.
The Rex, Ga. native was encouraged to apply for the White House HBCU All-Star Program by his friend and mentor, Aaron Coleman, an FVSU senior majoring in political science.
“Aaron asked me if I planned to apply to the White House HBCU all-star program, and my answer at that time was that I really didn’t know,” said Porter.
The FVSU Wildcat student quickly prepared his application for the January deadline, including his resume, an essay and a current transcript. He also submitted a recommendation letter from FVSU College of Arts and Sciences Dean Dr. Berlethia Pitts.
When a second opportunity within the Office of Legislative Counsel at the State Capitol presented itself this past January, Porter successfully applied for it as well with the help of other members of the FVSU family, including Anthony Boynton, a mentor, Writing Center Director Dorothy Hardman and several English professors.
“It was a community of mentors willing to extend their hand, and get me to the next level,” said Porter.
The Wildcat student will graduate in Spring 2015. His ultimate goal is to develop a career in politics.
Christina D. Milton, writer/Social Media Specialist
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