For Pritchett, an alumnus of neighboring HBCU Clark Atlanta, taking the helm of Morris Brown was a worthy challenge, but also an opportunity to honor his late brother, a proud Morris Brown alumnus who died in 2000.
The school, which at its height enrolled between 2,800 and 3,000 students, now enrolls 40, with classes taking place in the the only building still in use, alongside office workers in the school’s administration building. To restore the administration building, with its missing ceiling panels and aging insides, Pritchett is working to raise $2 million over the next 12 months. Regaining the school’s accreditation is next on the list, followed by attracting more students and boosting program offerings, including its once popular hospitality program.
To raise the money, Pritchett is starting with Morris Brown alumni. He contacts about 20 by phone each week and is lobbying the corporate community for help with a school in which many had lost hope.
“Now that we’re out of bankruptcy, one of our messages is, you’re not giving to a black hole,” he said.