When did HBCU Grad get started?
HBCU Grad started two years ago.
What was the motivation behind the HBCU Grad shirts?
The HBCU family is a breed of it’s on, a subculture. I wanted t create a shirt that not only served as a badge of honor, but also made people more aware of HBCUs and what it’s products looked like. The reality of today is that outside of the HBCU family, HBCUs have a not so positive stigma. I wanted to create a product that made people recognize their family members when they saw it. I also wanted to create something that caused people to ask “What’s an HBCU” it gives the wearer the opportunity to take back the control over what it means to go to a black college.
What is an HBCU? You’d be surprised at how many people don’t know what it is.
An HBCU stands for Historically Black College and(or) University. In order to be considered an HBCU is an institution of higher learning established in the United States before 1964 with the intention of serving the black community. Not all predominately black institutions are HBCUs and surprisingly there are a couple that are not majority black anymore.
What inspired the colors that you used?
The main colors I used were Black and White and I later incorporated gray. I didn’t want the colors to be school specific, I wanted them to be more universal. The goal is to create a new association with HBCUs. I also incorporated red because it’s bold and powerful. People do order custom colors all the time though.
Where do you see the HBCU Grad brand going or where do you want it to go?
Honestly I’m surprised everyday by the growth of the brand. I just got finished completing an order for a soldier in Afghanistan. That just goes to show that the HBCU family is more broad and diverse than even we understand sometimes.
My goal is to grow the brand to a point that even people who didn’t go to HBCUs want to wear it. Fashion is a form of art that is overlooked so much but it’s one of the most powerful ways to make a statement. If you look back at the sitcoms of the 90s you had people like Queen Latifah on Living Single, Martin on Martin, Will Smith on Fresh Prince and a host of other influential people rocking HBCU paraphernalia even if they didn’t go to that school just for the sake of support.
I think it’s kind of weird that I know most people who went to an HBCU would never wear the shirt of another HBCU but will wear a Duke, Harvard, or any other school. So I tried to make it easier by just putting HBCU.
How can we purchase a shirt?
Shirts can be purchased at proudhbcuproduct.com/store
How can we stay connected with HBCU Grad?
Will the all new website proudhbcuproduct.com and we take submissions all the time so feel free to submit.