It is only Tuesday but good news abounds. Within the last two days news broke of two black teenage boys who were accepted to multiple Ivy League schools. The first is Avery Coffey, a senior at Benjamin Banneker Academic High School in Washington, DC. Coffey was accepted at Harvard, Princeton, Yale, Brown and the University of Pennsylvania. Four of the schools have extended generous financial aid packages according to Fox News—Harvard is still working on it. Coffey was raised in a single-parent household in DC’s Ward 8, one of the poorest areas in the city, and has a 4.3 grade-point average and plans to pursue a career in finance.
The second Ivy League-bound teen is first-generation American Kwasi Enin who applied to all eight Ivies and was accepted to them all. It is rare for a student to apply to all eight Ivies and even rarer to get accepted to all eight, but it should come as no surprise for the New York-based William Floyd High senior who is in the top 2% of his class, has an SAT score of 2250 out of 2400 points and will have taken 11 Advanced Placement course by the time he graduates in the spring. Enin plans to study medicine just as his parents who emigrated from New York to Ghana in the 80s did. Enin also applied to three schools within the State University of New York system and Duke and was accepted to all of the schools. In a phone interview with USA Today Enin stated that Princeton has offered the most generous financial package and he is awaiting offers from the other institutions. There’s no word on which school he is leaning toward.
And lest we be remiss, or seem like we are privileging the Ivy League bound, congratulations are in order for Chad Thomas, a senior at Booker T. Washington in Miami who was offered 150 scholarships. Thomas, who plays high school football and plays nine instruments, has chosen to attend the University of Miami where he will play football and work on his music.
We hope that this is just the beginning of the good news regarding young black men being accepted not just to Ivy League institutions but to institutes of higher learning in general. But we also hope that as mainstream media covers these stories, they won’t be highlighted as exceptions because of the racial or socioeconomic backgrounds of these young men but as just another application of the rule of US citizens accessing the so-called “American dream.”