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B-CU Student Named a National HBCU All-Star

Bethune-Cookman University student Shantel Braynen has been chosen by the White House Initiative on Historically Black Colleges and Universities (WHIHBCU) today to join its first class of HBCU All-Stars, recognizing 75 undergraduate, graduate, and professional students for their accomplishments in academics, leadership, and civic engagement. 

Currently enrolled at 62 HBCUs, the All-Stars were selected from 445 students who submitted completed applications that included a transcript, resume, essay, and recommendation.

“Engaging with the next generation of leaders who will graduate from HBCUs and go on to make meaningful contributions to society is crucial to the success of our community, our country and our global competitiveness,” said George Cooper, executive director of the WHIHBCUs. “It is a privilege to announce these 75 students who have demonstrated a commitment to both their own academic achievement and making a difference in their communities, and we look forward to working with them as partners in advancing President Obama’s college completion goal.”

Braynen, a senior majoring in accounting in the School of Business, applied on the last day that applications were due. “I knew it was a competitive process, but I prayed that I would be chosen,” she said. “I am grateful to have an opportunity to represent Bethune-Cookman and all HBCU students nationally.”

Over the course of the next year, Braynen and the other HBCU All-Stars will serve as ambassadors of the White House Initiative.  Through social media and their relationships with community-based organizations, the All-Stars will share promising and proven practices that support opportunities for all young people to achieve their educational and career potential.

She is a very good student, so it doesn’t surprise me that Shantel was chosen for this honor,” said Dr. Aubrey Long, dean of the B-CU School of Business.  “She has lived up to her promise and been a real asset to the university. We could not be more proud of her.”

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Beverly James
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About Bethune Cookman University:

Founded in 1904 by Dr. Mary McLeod Bethune, Bethune-Cookman University (B-CU) today sustains her legacy of faith, scholarship, and service through its relationship with the United Methodist Church and its commitment to academic excellence and civic engagement.  B-CU offers 38 degrees on its main campus and online college. Located in Daytona Beach, B-CU is one of three private, historically black colleges in the state of Florida. The institution boasts a diverse and international faculty and student body of nearly 4,000.  For more information, visit

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