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Bowie State and Saginaw Valley announce unique collaboration

Bowie State University and Saginaw Valley State have announced a unique collaboration that will highlight the history and experience of HBCUs.

Courtesy: CIAA

Saginaw Valley State University (SVSU) of the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) and Bowie State University (BSU) of the Central Intercollegiate Athletics Association (CIAA) have announced a unique collaboration of common ground that will highlight the history and experience of Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs). The two NCAA Division II programs are scheduled to compete in a football game at 6 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 10 at SVSU’s Wickes Stadium.   

Founded in 1865 in Maryland, Bowie State is one of the original HBCUs in the United States and the oldest in the state of Maryland. It will combine with SVSU to offer several educational and cultural events in the days leading up to the Saturday football game, including appearances at Saginaw Valley State by Bowie State’s renowned Symphony of Soul marching band, and joint programs hosted by faculty of both institutions. SVSU is the youngest public university in Michigan, founded in 1963. 

Bowie State Saginaw Valley State

“While our athletic teams and those of other HBCUs often compete against non-HBCUs in various sports, the experience is often limited to the athletic contest,” said Clyde Doughty, director of intercollegiate athletics at Bowie State. “This partnership between Bowie State and SVSU provides extraordinary learning opportunities for representatives of both schools and their communities. I am not aware of any similar ventures that have ever been undertaken.”  

On Thursday, Sept. 8, there will be a showing of the film, “Tell Them We Arise,” followed by a panel discussion. Some traditional HBCU social activities, including a “step show,” will be among the pre-game events at SVSU on Friday, Sept. 9. 

“The SVSU community and the surrounding community have a proud tradition of supporting diverse cultures, including on-campus events such as our Intercultural Night, participation in the MLK Unity March, Great Lakes Bay Regional MLK Celebration and more,” said John Decker, director of athletics at Saginaw Valley State. “Michigan is home to just one small HBCU (Pensole Lewis College of Business & Design) that recently resumed operation, so for many of our students, faculty and staff, this will be a unique opportunity to learn more about these extraordinary institutions and their important role in American higher education.” 

Bowie State finished 2021 ranked No. 6 in the nation for NCAA Division II football; the Bulldogs hosted SVSU for a football contest last season. 

Bowie State and Saginaw Valley announce unique collaboration
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