The COVID-19 pandemic mostly stopped festivals, concerts, and any other large gatherings of any kind in the United States as the public knew them. However, the idea of virtual performances soon found its place in the new normal as some of the most prominent artists held shows from their homes or safe locations for little to no money. Another organization now taking advantage of this idea is Support Black Colleges.
The clothing line, which partnered up with creative brand studio Studio Ten85, is set to host their inaugural HBCU Virtual Homecoming from Oct. 21 to Oct. 25. The virtual event will stream on Support Black Colleges’ YouTube and Facebook channels. Throughout the week, SBC aims to raise $500,000 for HBCUs.
CEOs and co-founders of Support Black Colleges, Corey Arvinger and Justin Phillips, released a joint statement about the event, saying, “You can’t stop Homecoming, our culture is too big and our HBCU community deserves more. These times have proved to be trying, but we are going to give HBCU students everything we have.” The two businessmen also invite current students, alumni, potential students, and others to attend a Build Your Own Brand business and entrepreneurship conference, a “Pitch Please” startup competition in the style of “Shark Tank,” and a step show competition that will all take place during the week of the event.
Ari Lennox, Kirk Franklin, 2 Chainz, and Mulatto are just a few of many artists set to participate in the virtual celebration. “The pandemic had a huge effect on many touring artists this year, including myself. We had a number of things planned for the homecoming season, including an HBCU tour with Femme It Forward. Which unfortunately had to be canceled,” Ari said in a press statement to Billboard. “I’m super excited to be performing virtually with Support Black Colleges during their HBCU Virtual homecoming. I am looking forward to the world opening back up and being able to see my fans once again.”
Kirk also spoke on the event, saying, “HBCUs have supported my career for over 20 years.” The gospel superstar added, “With such continuous change this year, I’m grateful to SBC for putting together this Virtual Homecoming to bring hope, love, and inspiration to our future leaders. Me and my RCA Inspiration family are going to do our best to leave you encouraged on Sunday.”
Check out the teaser clip of the HBCU Virtual Homecoming festivities below. More information regarding the event could be found on the official website VirtualHBCUHomecoming.com