Cheyney and Lincoln universities could be in line for federal funds to preserve significant sites on their campuses.
The money would come from a bill proposed by U.S. Rep. Jim Clyburn, D-S.C., Capitol Hill’s highest-ranking Black congressman, the No.3 leader of Democrats in the House of Representatives. The measure has already passed the House and a similar version has been sent to a Senate committee, according to a report Friday in the Congressional record.
Clyburn has proposed funding to preserve significant sites at historically Black colleges and universities. He said the bill, which authorizes $10 million every year for seven years under the Historically Black Colleges and University Historic Preservation Program, won’t preserve every significant site but continues work already in progress.
“The structures on these campuses across the country are living testaments to African-American history and deserve to be stabilized and restored,” Clyburn said. “I will continue to work with my colleagues in Congress to preserve our nation’s history.”
INSTITUTION OF HIGHER LEARNING, U.S.
There are 107 HBCUs in the United States, including public and private institutions, community and four-year institutions, medical and law schools. Most were created in the aftermath of the American Civil War and are in the former slave states, although a few notable exceptions exist.
Most HBCUs were established after the American Civil War, often with the assistance of northern religious missionary organizations. However, Cheyney University of Pennsylvania (1837) and Lincoln University (Pennsylvania) (1854) , were established for blacks before the American Civil War. In 1856 the AME Church of Ohio collaborated with the Methodist Episcopal Church, a predominantly white denomination, in sponsoring the third college Wilberforce University in Ohio. Established in 1865, Shaw University was the first HBCU in the South to be established after the American Civil War.
The Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended, defines a “part B institution” as: “…any historically black college or university that was established before 1964, whose principal mission was, and is, the education of black Americans, and that is accredited by a nationally recognized accrediting agency or association determined by the Secretary [of Education] to be a reliable authority as to the quality of training offered or is, according to such an agency or association, making reasonable progress toward accreditation.” Part B of the 1965 Act provides for direct federal aid to Part B institutions.
Of the 107 HBCU institutions in the United States today, 27 offer doctoral programs and 52 provide graduate degree programs at the Master’s level. At the undergraduate level, 83 of the HBCUs offer a bachelor’s degree program and 38 of these schools offer associate degrees. HBCUs are distinctive institutions in that they make up only 3% of the nation’s institutions of higher learning.
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