Showcase ‘blooms’ on campus

Students, teachers and alumni filled the courtyard in front of Coleman Library this weekend to participate in the Artists in Bloom Festival.

The annual talent showcase was an opportunity for students to show off their skills and at the same time shop for their favorite CD’s, T-shirts and accessories. The festival reunited alumni and brought many of the students together. The festival was also a time for many high school students to see FAMU for the first time.

Chris Smith, 17, an aspiring pediatrician from Sante Fe High School in Lakeland said, “The thing that stands out to me the most is the girls. It seems like a fun school and somewhere I’d like to be.”

Many of the high school students were able to participate with many of the event’s activities such as the dance and hula-hoop competition. Some of the

University’s students were worried that the kids would think that FAMU is all fun and games.

Lolita Middleton, counselor of The Bridge Works of Northeast Florida, said, “I come every year and I always enjoy myself, and the kids seem to enjoy it as well.” Middleton brought 23 students ages 15-18, and they all were interested in getting different degrees.

“All of my kids are very intelligent and have bright futures ahead of them. I hope that if they do choose this university that they will be challenged in ways that they have never been challenged before so they will all come out on top at the end,” Middleton said.

Alton White, 17, is a high school junior from Jacksonville. He is interested in the graphic design program at FAMU.

“I heard that it takes a long time for students to graduate,” Alton said.

“That’s up to the students,” said Middleton. “White along with every other boy that I talked to seemed to be drawn in by the girls at the University, but after talking to him it was easy to see that he was a pretty focused student that had goals in life and had a lot to say about graphic design.”

Shovan Johnson, 18, from Dr. Phillips High School In Orlando said, “There are so many things to do around here.”

She wants to attend FAMU but is undecided on a major.

“The one thing that stands out to me is how everyone here gets along, and it seems like one big family. You can go and talk to anyone and you don’t have to be shy about it because more than likely they know you from somewhere.”

The atmosphere surrounding FAMU impressed Anthony Jones, a teacher at one of the high schools.

“The campus seems very family oriented, and many of the students share the same things and have a lot in common,” Jones said.

Jones also added that after visiting the University he could see why many of his students, friends and family wanted him to attend FAMU.

Contact S. Lee Simpson at