News & Features, September 2016

Big fish in a little pond

When Kendrick Cunningham was in high school in Charlotte, NC, a few years ago, he wanted to attend college at North Carolina A&T. That institution in Greensboro is about 10 times the size of Saint Augustine’s and is the largest HBCU in the nation.

But Cunningham’s guidance counselor recommended Saint Augustine’s University, and something about the smaller school appealed to him. Cunningham ended up becoming a Falcon in the fall of 2013. Now a junior, he says it’s the best decision he ever made.

“When I arrived at St. Aug, I was quickly acclimated to the students, faculty and staff,” Cunningham said. “I liked the family-oriented campus and I was able to find the right friends to socialize with. …I have loved St. Aug ever since I got here.”

You might say that Cunningham is a big fish in a small pond. He is active in several student organizations.

Cunningham is a member of the Student Government Association, where he serves as Student Trustee. Cunningham is also president of the Pre Alumni Council, an organization that aims to increase retention rates and develop dedicated pre-alumni of the institution. He oversees special projects of the Campus Activities Board and is a member of the National Honor Society and the Pi Lambda Theta Honor Society.

This past summer, Cunningham was a delegate of Saint Augustine’s University at the Millennium Campus Conference in Washington, D.C. He was Sophomore Class President.

“My passion to assist in making this university a better university,” Cunningham said.

Friends are not surprised that he has attained leadership positions. “Kendrick has a very open and collaborative mindset and he shows empathy towards students,” said sophomore Alston DeVega, who serves with Cunningham in the Student Government Association.

A political science major, Cunningham plans to enroll in George Washington University grad school and study international affairs when he graduates. “I want to go into the teaching profession or join the City Council in Charlotte,” he said.

Cunningham makes no secret of his ultimate intention: to become U.S. Secretary of Education. He posted that goal on his Facebook page, along with this quote: “What is a limit?”

— Sterling Raynor