Thursday, May 12, 2011

My Fair Lane...Part 1


I started off writing down why I hadn’t posted anything since the last days of April; however, in a thought last night, I decided that I wanted to talk about my fair Lane….For those of you who don’t know about dear ol’ Fair Lane, here is some brief history:

  • Founded in 1882 by Bishop Issac Lane
  • It was first known as the “C.M.E. High School”
  • C.M.E. High School was later named Lane Institute in 1884 and Lane College in 1896
  • Dr. McClure, a 1964 alumnus, assumed the position of President on September 1, 1992 (current President)
  • Lane College will be celebrating 130 years this year

Lane College (LC) has been around in my family for some time now; two uncles and one aunt attended before me.  Now, in order for you to understand the intensity of attending Lane, you have to know the back story.  During my senior year of high school, I was dead set on applying to Langston University, Wilberforce University, and Norfolk University.  Each of these institutions were scattered among the US; there really wasn’t a valid reason for applying: I just wanted to be away from home and at a Historically Black College or University (HBCU).  My parents and brother attended and/or graduated from the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff (UAPB); I had made a vow to myself that I would not follow in my parents footsteps.  I wanted to become my own trailblazer and make a legacy for my children.  So, one of my uncles that graduated from Lane (1964 Alum) told me that I would one day wear a LC or UAPB shirt….I told him that he was wrong; I guess God had other plans for me.

Back in high school, I was in love with speech competitions; I thrived for the internal rush (I have NO clue where it came from).  During the night of the first round of speeches at church, my aunt (1968 Alum) pulled me to the side and said these words “I didn’t turn your Langston application in; instead, I submitted your name to Lane College”.  WAIT.  Did she just say that my application for Langston didn’t get turned in?  It wasn’t because the mail lost it, or they denied my application…it was because she just didn’t turn it in!!!!  Am I suppose to be mad, sad, angry, upset, happy, confused, WHAT?????  Stop, did she just say Lane College?  I never expressed I wanted to go there!  Why did she do this to me?  RESUME.  To make matters worse, it was soon to be my turn to present my speech; this was not the way I intended for things to go.  Nevertheless, I won the entire competition, but you know that I was not too happy about the news I received.  My aunt later explained that she felt that I would be a small fish in a huge pond at Langston; instead, she wanted me to be a big fish in a little pond at Lane (I later understood EXACTLY what she meant).

My first official visit to the campus was for New Student Orientation; I can’t really say that I remember every thing about it, but I did make friends that weekend that I still consider friends.  One thing that I do remember is the day my mother dropped me off at Lane for the Fall term.  I was terrified beyond belief; I didn’t want to step out and become a grown up.  Watching my Ma drive away was the beginning of a future that was about to unfold, and boy was I NOT ready for this ride; a ride of a lifetime….