Augusta, GA – Students from Paine College will join 47 other Historically Black Colleges and University (HBCU) students in making final preparations to face off in a unique battle of academic prowess at the 21st annual Honda Campus All-Star Challenge (www.hcasc.com) the nation’s largest academic competition held between HBCUs. More than 250 HBCU college students will travel to Orlando, Florida to participate in the two-day competition, April 11-12, which will showcase their knowledge in the areas of world history, science, literature, religion, the arts, social science and popular culture. Each of the participating 48 teams will have the opportunity to win grant money for their school with the winner walking away with the top prize of $50,000. In all, a total of $328,000 in institutional grants will be awarded through this year’s program.
Last year, Paine College’s Honda Campus All-Star Challenge team made history for the College at the national championship tournament held in Orlando, FL. Paine College placed 2nd in their division, which included seven other HBCUs and advanced to the semifinals “Sweet 16” for the first time since the competition’s inception. “We’re going further than the “Sweet 16” next year,” said George C. Bradley, who accompanied the team to the tournament.
2009 team captain, Eric Stephens was among the top 8 players of 64 institutions and the number 1 player in his division. Teammate Edward Collins was number 4 in his division.
“I am extremely proud of our team. We made history this last year and we plan to advance further this year. Last year, all of the players performed at a level that they should be proud of and I am confident they will do the same this year," said Deloris Croom, Paine College team coach. "We appreciate all of the support from the Paine College community.”
The Honda Campus All-Star Challenge is the only annual academic competition held between the nation’s HBCUs. Paine College is just one of the schools that participate in the three day tournament that test their skills in world history, science, literature, religion, the arts, social sciences, popular culture and African-American history and culture.
Paine College has participated in this competition since its inception earning over $30,000 for the institution, which is used to enhance student programs, team travel and team preparation.
This year the “Great 48,” as they are called, will be split into eight divisions and compete in a modified round robin format. The top two teams from each division will advance to the "Sweet 16,” and compete in a single elimination playoff. The final two teams will then compete for the National Champion title. Colleges and universities from Texas, Louisiana, Georgia, North Carolina, Maryland, Virginia, Alabama, Tennessee, South Carolina, Ohio, Illinois, Mississippi, Kentucky, Missouri and New York are slated to participate.
“The Honda Campus All-Star Challenge was created to shine a spotlight on the academic excellence exemplified at America’s Historically Black Colleges and Universities,” said Marc Burt, senior manager, Office of Inclusion and Diversity, American Honda Motor Company. “We at Honda are proud to say that 21 years after this program’s inception, HCASC continues to not only highlight the great minds present at our nation’s HBCUs, but it also provides, through grant giving, an opportunity for the company to invest one of the country’s largest pipelines for professional and academic talent.”
The Honda Campus All-Star Challenge is one of Honda’s largest and longest running philanthropic initiatives in the United States. Since 1989, HCASC has brought together the nation’s best and brightest academic competitors from the America’s top HBCUs. In addition to providing students a venue for friendly competition, the program encourages relationship building, intellectual excellence and the development of values that define good character. Throughout its 21 year history HCASC has touched over 50,000 students, awarded more than $5 million in grants and continues to be the only annual academic competition of its kind.
For more information on the Honda Campus All Star Challenge and a list of the 48 participating HBCUs please visit www.hcasc.com.
Honda supports a variety of initiatives aimed at advancing education and creating experiences of discovery that help people see and achieve their own dreams. The Honda Campus All-Star Challenge, along with the Honda Battle of the Bands, are two of Honda’s major initiatives supporting Historically Black Colleges and Universities and to helping young people pursue their dreams.
Photo caption: Top row: Dr. Tina Marshall-Bradley, Uzetta Gresham, institutional representative, Eric Stephens, Jasmine Van Exel, President George C. Bradley, and Deloris Croom, coach.
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