ESSENCE, in partnership with, PepsiCo Beverages North America, introduced today "She Got Now" – a multi-tiered platform that celebrates, supports and honors young Black women aspiring to and attending Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) across the country. The platform launch will commence with a multi-campus tour honoring the homecoming traditions unique to four major HBCUs, culminating with the inaugural Allen McKellar Jr. Internship Program, named in honor of one of the first Black professionals to enter the corporate workforce, through a job at PepsiCo.
"We are honored to partner with ESSENCE to launch 'She Got Now,' a platform that celebrates the innate entrepreneurial spirit of young Black women and shines the spotlight on the fantastic culture of our nation's top HBCUs," said Hampton University graduate, Derek Lewis, President, South Division, PepsiCo Beverages North America. "To be able to honor PepsiCo's very own Allen McKellar Jr., a remarkable individual in Black history, who reflects the values and ideals PepsiCo still holds today, and simultaneously honor these young women is incredibly special."
"For generations, HBCUs have served Black students – particularly Black women – having graduated trailblazing women from Oprah Winfrey to Alice Walker. As today's student body builds upon this legacy, we are excited to continue to empower the next group of emerging leaders," noted Michelle Ebanks, Chief Executive Officer, ESSENCE Communications. "'She Got Now' will serve as an extension of ESSENCE's nearly 50-year mission to celebrate and support Black women; and together, with PepsiCo, we will continue to deepen this commitment."
The "She Got Now" platform comes to life with a multi-campus homecoming tour this fall at the following HBCUs:
Florida A&M University, October 5
Howard University, October 12
Hampton University, October 26
Norfolk State University, November 2
The tour will feature top DJs, and battle of the band competitions between opposing marching bands where fans can vote on who wins. Each stop will be hosted by Doug E. Fresh and feature a bevy of today's stars across music and entertainment, including Saweetie, Gia Peppers, Rotimi, Terence J, Scottie Beam and DJ Envy.
Starting mid-November, the "She Got Now" Allen McKellar Jr. Internship Program will be open to all young Black women aspiring to or attending one of the participating HBCUs. Applicants should follow Pepsi's and ESSENCE's Twitter pages for more information and updates on "She Got Now" platform.