Caleb Davis is a freshman at Morehouse College, an historically black, all-male college in Atlanta, Georgia.
Q: What are you studying?
A: I’m getting a dual degree in mechatronics and engineering. Morehouse can’t give you an engineering degree, so you have to take classes at another university. I could possibly go to Georgia Tech or Columbia. There have even been some people that get into MIT and Dartmouth.
Q: What the heck is mechatronics?
A: It’s a hybrid between mechanical and electrical engineering.
Q: Is it difficult?
A: So far, not really. It isn’t really the difficulty of the classes—it’s more about managing time.
Q: Are there any classes that stand out?
A: All the classes are kind of mediocre. The religion teacher is always late, but he’s a really good teacher. The class I do like a lot is called Reading. We talk about some deep philosophical stuff and what it means to be a Morehouse man. We also talk about sex, gender, and love. A few books we read were “The Celestine Prophecy” and “Perfect Peace.” They were all really good books.
Q: How does being at a historically black college change the college experience?
A: I mean it does and it doesn’t. The whole notion of race is kind of erased. Everyone is so different here in their own way. All of the smartest African Americans come here. But the whole black college portion of it is really supportive, and there’s a rich culture and history. During orientation they talked all about the history and culture of Morehouse. It was a good hour or two, but it was pretty interesting. The history and culture is pretty much what you’re initially introduced to at Morehouse.
Q: So are there a lot of traditions there?
A: On what’s called Spirit Night, which takes place at around three or four in the morning, the upperclassmen woke us up and we would have to recite the Morehouse hymn, and they were all yelling at us saying, “Do you really want to be here?” It’s kind of like a rite of passage for the freshmen. And after that, we formed a long chain from the chapel to the gym, and we chanted, “I got my brother’s back” the whole morning. At the gym there was a huge rally. It was chill and really fun. Another event I really liked was the Olympics. It’s kind of similar to the Country Day Olympics, but it’s between each hall. It includes a few track events and a small derby car race. I had the privilege of designing our hall’s cart, and we didn’t win, but we got best design.
Q: Is it hard to go to an all-guys’ school?
A: Well being an all-guys’ school doesn’t really matter because (women’s college) Spelman and Clark are right next door. There is a lot interaction, but Clark is kind of looked down upon.
Q: How come?
A: Morehouse and Spelman are more prestigious. That’s not saying Clark is a bad school. I think of it like Morehouse and Spelman are like brother and sister and Clark is the cousin.
Q: How’s the campus?
A: I’m going to be honest with you. It’s historic, but it’s kind of old and broken down. I’d also describe it as small.
Q: How’s living in the South?
A: It’s different in the sense that in the South the people tend to be a lot more open and outgoing. They greet you when you walk by, which I was not used to. In terms of the weather, it’s spontaneous. The weather is hot, and then it will rain out of nowhere.
Q: How hard is it compared to Country Day?
A: By far I think Morehouse is easier than Country Day. Country Day does a really good job of preparing you. All of those classes you’re going through are really going to pay off. Country Day students are clearly ahead of the curve.
Q: Was there anything that surprised you about Morehouse?
A: I was surprised by how many people here are into anime and (the anime character) Naruto. They talk about it a lot. It’s crazy!
Q: Any advice for the class of 2015?
A: I would say manage your time really well because college itself isn’t that hard. Also, get as many scholarships as you can, because if you don’t, you’re pretty much paying for your education. And it isn’t cool to fail in college because you’re wasting all that time, money and energy. Oh, and get to know your professors.