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Posted under: Culture

Howard University Students Share What Foods Remind Them Of Home

Thanksgiving looks different for everyone, check out how diverse these dishes are with Howard students.

Diversity at HBCUs has been a topic of debate since 2019. Whether it’s discussing how some believe diversity is destroying HBCUs or how HBCUs lack diversity and thus are not as equipped as other institutions.  Either way, HBCUs have always embraced Black people from various walks of life. The African diaspora stretches far and students within it travel to the nation’s HBCUs for rigorous educational environments and quality wraparound services. 

While attending these schools, students in the diaspora bring their culture, customs, traditions, fashions, and food. Below are some Howard students’ favorite foods and meals that remind them of their homes. 

Ackee and Saltfish from Jamaica

Dejaun Williams is from Montego Bay, Jamaica, and his favorite meal from home is ackee and saltfish with boiled dumplings. Back home they call the dumplings, along with banana, "provisions."

Cheeseteaks from Philly

Inez Jacobs-Hinton is from Philadelphia and her favorite meal that reminds her of home is unironically a cheesesteak.  She says, "Grandma makes them and every time I eat them, I know I’m home.

Fufu from Ghana

Gideon Boadu is from Ghana and fufu is the dish that reminds him the most of back home. Fufu can consist of yams or plantain and is usually accompanied by stewed meat. 

Catfish and Spaghetti from Mississippi

Ahdis Beruk hails from Greenville, MS and his favorite meal from home is a Mississippi staple; spaghetti, catfish, and salad. 

Oxtail and rice from Jamaica

Yashieka Fearon is from Mandeville, Jamaica and her favorite food is oxtail with white rice.  Really, who could blame her? You can certainly add that dish to all of our lists. 

Sweet potato pie

Lastly, we have Eshe Ukweli who says that sweet potato pie reminds them of home, family, and legacy. They said, "I remember growing up watching my mother and grandmother make it, and now I get a chance to join the tradition and make pies of my own."

As you can clearly see, our student body here at Howard University is vast. Diversity is probably our school's middle name. This is a special time for many and a unique time for students on campus. Many of us will be able to head home and commune with our families. Others may not, and it's really normal to miss some of your favorite dishes that you grew up loving. So from all of us to you out there, have a safe holiday this week and love on your loved ones.


Darreonna Davis is a journalism student at Howard University who is working as a Blavity U student ambassador. Davis relies on her news writing, feature writing, production and editing skills to amplify the stories and experiences of Black women. 

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