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WSSU student makes history as first HBCU intern at NC Real Estate Commission

Winston-Salem State University junior Maliyah Winters is already a history maker. The Raleigh native is the first historically Black college student to intern at the NC Real Estate Commission in the 2024 Summer Education and Licensing Department.

Winters, who aspires to become a real estate agent, learned of this opportunity when the NC Real Estate Commission held its first-ever lunch and learn event on the campus of WSSU, said William Gibson, coordinator of employer relations for WSSU’s Career Development Services.

The lunch and learn was a collaborative effort between Career Development Services and Minerva Mims, a WSSU alumna who serves as the state Real Estate Commission’s diversity, equity and inclusion officer. 

“Being the first HBCU student to ever receive this internship in the Education & Licensing Department is an unexplainable achievement,” Winters said. “It is opening doors for those that look like me that thought it wasn’t possible. Just to know that I am making history – not only for myself but for other HBCU students like me who want to pursue a career like this one – is a blessing.”

Winters said her primary responsibility during the internship is creating unique social media marketing campaigns for brokers and consumers using her graphic design and video productions skillset. Even more beneficial, though, is the exposure and connections to realtors from across the state and getting to experience what they encounter on a daily basis, she said.

A business administration major with a concentration in marketing, Winters is the 2024-2025 WSSU Campus Activities Board president and a Home Depot Retool Your School ambassador. She hopes to one day operate her own brokerage firm and said this internship is a stepping stone in reaching her goals.

“When I first stepped foot on campus here at WSSU, I felt at home and a sense of comfort. Staff and students did a great job at making me feel welcomed,” Winters said. “The phrase ‘Ramily’ is a great representation of the environment on this campus. Had it not been for WSSU, I wouldn’t have the connections and experiences needed to further my career.”

“This internship is an amazing opportunity for Maliyah to gain invaluable real-world experience and to pave the way for future HBCU students,” Wilson said. “Her journey is a shining example of what can be achieved when determination meets opportunity. As a former WSSU student, I have seen firsthand how crucial these connections and resources are in shaping our futures, and Maliyah’s story is a powerful reminder of the impact we can all make.”

Career Development Services is committed to its strategic plan, specifically in fostering student success, Wilson said. “We are deeply focused on connecting students to experiential learning opportunities that enhance their academic and professional journeys. I would also like to extend my heartfelt thanks to Minerva Mims for making the opportunity possible.”

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