Morehouse College outwit North Carolina Central University to win the 17th Annual Honda Campus All-Star Challenge (HCASC). The academic competition themed “Your Challenged Spirit,” was held in Orlando, Fla. from March 30 through April 2, 2006 and featured talented participants from Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) nationwide.
The men of Morehouse College beat out more than 320 college students from 64 HBCUs for a grant of $50,000 for their school. The runner-up took home a $25,000 grant. The remaining 62 teams earned grants ranging from $3,000 to $15,000. Through the program, more than $300,000 in institutional grants is awarded annually to participating schools.
The Morehouse team included Captain Jordan A. Harris (Senior, Economics), and players Mark A. Bernard (Senior, Chemistry), Anthony Christopher Smith (Senior, Political Science & Pre-Law), John Ramsey Clarke (Senior, Economics) and Alvin McNair (Freshman, Undeclared). They were coached by Dr. Anderson Cornelius Williams (Professor; Elberton, Ga.), according to emergingminds.com
“HCASC” is a celebration of the proud academic heritage and contributions the nation’s HBCUs have made to our society,” said Eric Conn, Assistant Vice-President of National Advertising for American Honda Motor Co., Inc.
HBCU students also hold this competition in positive regard, “I think it [HCASC] gives the chance for all HBCUs to get to know each other on a more competitive level besides sports. You can really see whose learning what, at what HBCUs,” said Jeremy Williams, a sophomore majoring in graphic design at Howard University.
“Competitions of this nature show that we aren’t just at school to get a free ride but, to show that we are smart and some of us are really talented at a lot of things,” said Adrienne Cater, a senior majoring in fashion merchandising at the University of Maryland Eastern Shore.
In 1989, the Honda Campus All-Star Challenge was created by the American Honda Motor Co. Inc and sponsored by the College Bowl Company with the intent of establishing an academic competition for America’s Black Colleges. All 89 degree granting HBCUs in the U.S. are eligible to compete in the program.
Over the past 16 years, the competition has evolved into its current format, where 64 schools qualify to attend the National Championship Tournament. Through campus wide games, the teams gather points to advance to the semi-final competition.
More than 50,000 HBCU students have contributed to the Honda Campus All-Star Challenge and Honda has given nearly $5 million dollars in grants to the participating schools.