JaMyia McNeil

It felt like we were in a safe space and we were never judged based on how we expressed ourselves.


Why did you attend the program?

I attended the Bridge Builders program for several reasons. Overall, it was an amazing opportunity to learn more about myself and Historically Black Colleges and Universities. My best friend’s mom thought it would be a great program for us to be involved in.

During the program, I was struggling with voicing my opinions and expressing myself. I was unsure about what kind of schools I wanted to attend after high school.


How was your experience during the event? 

My overall experience was GREAT! I met so many different kinds of people and I loved being there. During the program, I became closer with my classmates and I learned more about their personal struggles and experiences.

It felt like we were in a safe space and we were never judged based on how we expressed ourselves.


What were some of the changes you noticed after? 

During my last year of the program, I noticed how I became more confident in expressing myself and I knew I wanted to attend a Historically Black College/University. I also decided to get baptized earlier this year in January and I have since become closer with God and my inner self.  

As a result, I am a totally different person than I was when I first started the program. I have grown tremendously! I am stronger mentally and emotionally. Although I am still growing, I know who I want to be. I am confident and able to express myself willingly.


What did you learn about yourself, the world, or ministry at this time?

At the time, I learned that I did not know God (or I wasn’t trying to), I did not know myself and I had not developed a plan for after graduation because I was only in ninth or tenth grade.


What was the best thing about attending?

The best thing about attending the program was having the opportunity to tour HBCUs in different states and connecting with different kinds of people.


What advice would you give to someone who wanted to attend?

Get everything you can get out of the program. Do not be afraid to express yourself. If you need help with anything, ASK. There is no such thing as a dumb question. Learn as much as you can and use it to your advantage. 

Rachel Larson
St. Peter, MN
Reverend Elizabeth Pollard
Atlanta, GA
Kendarius Ivey
Tuskegee, AL
Frank Stanley
Atlanta, GA
Emmanuel Garcia
San Antonio, TX