Luke Lawal: The Entrepreneur Who Continues to Break Down Barriers in the HBCU Community

We all know the phrase “hard work pays off” has been around forever, and while that may be true everyone’s journey is different and so is the payoff. Serial Entrepreneur, founder and CEO, Omega Psi Phi fraternity member, and HBCU graduate are just a few accomplishments held by none other than Luke Lawal. His work in the HBCU community speaks for itself as he created the highly renowned HBCU Buzz multimedia platform all while attending the University of Bowie State.

HBCU Buzz is a platform that delivers HBCU news, insights and editorials from the Black College community. Luke created the platform in his dorm room and was inspired by an incident where a young woman died on campus. This shed such a negative light on the university and Luke wanted to change the narrative. He wanted news outlets to see the positive aspects of not only his alma mater but other Black colleges and HBCU’s around the world.

Luke’s success has always been accompanied by his strong will not only succeed but also excel. His upbringing surely has a lot to do with the man he is today as his parents provided great guidance from an adolescent until now. Luke recalls his mom waking him up at 4:30 am, the same time she’d wake up, to do what she liked to call “pre-homework”. While at the dinner table they would go over the work for the week and that would happen even before breakfast. His father provided him with a lot of tools to be entrepreneurially driven. He’d see something and say “you can make money by doing this”. Luke called the experience of having both parents “the best of both worlds”.

While speaking with Luke about what he learned while attending Bowie State he touched on many things. Although he ran track, won several championships, and was also a member of SGA, Luke credits Bowie State with teaching him how to not only stand up but also fight for any and everything that he wanted. He spoke on how important it was to create networks outside of campus. Luke has been awarded many accolades, but last year took things to the next level. Never one to seek out recognition, Luke was honored by Nike for his effortless contributions to Historically Black Colleges and Universities. #Yardrunners was created by Nike to highlight individuals who continue to uplift and change the way HBCU’s are viewed. Luke could have simply graduated and gone on about his professional career, but he chose to continue to fight for change just as he did as a freshman in college.