Major: Business Administration
Activities: BSU Royal Court, Entrepreneurship Academy, Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Inc.
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For DeRonte Craig, a senior business management major, attending college has been all about maximizing opportunities. With a full course load, student activities and a small business to manage, he has discovered that there is no limit to what he can accomplish at Bowie State.
DeRonte has taken on many leadership roles including serving as president of the BSU’s Entrepreneurship Academy, a lead mentor for Bowie Men Ignite and a member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Inc.
After holding lower-ranking positions on BSU’s Royal Court, he now proudly wears the top crown as Mr. Bowie State. As one of the most visible student leaders on campus, he encourages his fellow Bulldogs to make an impact on campus by embracing “Honor and Legacy” – honoring those who came before you and leaving a legacy for those behind you. During the holiday season, he led by example, launching a fundraising campaign to boost the university’s annual giving fund and student scholarships. His goal is to honor alumni who’ve made large contributions of their time and resources to support Bowie State’s operations and learning environment. “It’s being able to impact the world holistically and being able to create something that can not only change my life but others as well,” he said.
Early adversity fueled his drive to succeed and to be a positive influence. As a child he had to grow up fast – taking on more responsibilities to care for his younger siblings while their father was incarcerated. Today, DeRonte has turned his challenges into triumphs—immersing himself in academics and thriving in a tight community of friends and mentors. He says that those close relationships are what makes Bowie State feel like home.
Supportive faculty have also shaped his outlook on learning and communicating. “I wasn’t the type of person to ask for help, but being here has allowed me to take a different approach.” Their guidance –along with resources from the Entrepreneurship Academy– has also been vital during the development of his business, the Gentlemen’s Toolbox. Inspired by his own love of fashion, the company offers men’s accessories and professional wardrobe consulting. In addition to online sales, his products are available for purchase in the BSU Bookstore.
The student entrepreneur participated in the Summer Launch Program to develop his next entrepreneurial venture Mary’s Little Helper. The wearable technology will allow people to monitor the health of their aging loved ones.
No matter which path he chooses, DeRonte’s diverse experiences have prepared him for success. “Each day…I continue to grow as an individual, as a student, as an advocate and as a leader.”