Success Story – Wil Lucas

Higher education professional Wil Lucas was born in July 1991, in Prince Georges County, Maryland, to parents Wilbur and Evelyn Lucas. He graduated from Charles Herbert Flowers High School in 2009. He earned his B.A. degree in Mass Communication from Benedict College Columbia, South Carolina, in 2013, his M.A. degree in Organizational Communication from Bowie State University in Maryland in 2015, and his Ph.D. degree in Higher Education from Jackson State University in Jackson, MS in 2021.

After graduating from Benedict College, Lucas began freelance reporting for PGCTV in Maryland. In 2015, he began his higher education journey at Shaw University serving as an admission counselor. While in this position, Lucas helped establish one of the University’s largest incoming freshman classes. He then quickly realized his passion for higher education work. In 2018, Lucas went on to serve as Assistant Director of Enrollment Management and online program Coordinator at Philander Smith College in Little Rock, AR. After returning to Shaw to serve as the Associate Director of Admission, he currently is serving as a Program Manager for the UNCF Institute for Capacity Building.

Wil has played a pivotal role in the enrolling and graduation of hundreds of HBCU alum throughout the country. He has dedicated almost a decade of higher education experience, to ensuring minority students are aware of their educational opportunities while serving as an advocate for all HBCUs. Lucas is married to his wife Antonia, and proud girl dad to Taliyah and Willow. He is also a member of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Beta Cohort of the Higher Education Leadership Foundation, and serves as a mentor for several programs designed to mold young men that have similar backgrounds and plan on attending HBCUs in the future.

Benedict College Influence

Benedict College played one of the most influential roles in my life. In my freshman and sophomore years, I was a student-athlete, playing quarterback on the football team. While I was not getting any playing time, I can say that experience blinded me to all BC had to offer. In the second semester of his sophomore year, he hung up his cleats and became more active on campus. From making new friends, joining several organizations, and taking my classroom experience more seriously, I began to witness Benedict College offering all the amenities you could receive anywhere else in the country. As a Mass Communication major, he built relationships with faculty members he could call for advice. President Swinton did an excellent job leading the institution while he was here. He also believes today’s Tigers may be in an even better position as the institution continues to evolve under the leadership of Dr. Roslyn Artis.

Advice Response

His advice for anyone considering Benedict College, or currently enrolled is simple. “A closed mouth does not get fed. In my experience, I found a willingness to uplift the student body is literally embedded in the faculty, staff, and mission of the institution. It is your responsibility to speak up and let the leaders of your College know what exactly you want your college experience to look like. I guarantee you will be surprised at how receptive they are. It is a misconception that HBCUs ‘coddle’ their students to graduation. At Benedict College, not everyone makes it out. For those that do, they have been molded into some of the best leaders throughout various industries internationally. Let the next one be you!”

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