On Wednesday, March 4, members of Maryland’s congressional delegation hosted a meeting with leaders of all four historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs) in Maryland to discuss how the federal government can better support our nation’s HBCUs and their students.
An underlying factor behind the meeting remains the significant impact HBCUs have on our communities and the nation. They offer a high-quality education for a lower price than other institutions of higher education, and, despite only making up three percent of the total number of American colleges and universities, HBCUs graduate 20 percent of all African-American graduates and 25 percent of African-American graduates in the STEM fields.
Most recently, the FY2020 Omnibus increased funding for several programs important to HBCUs, including permanent funding authorization for Title III program, as well as increases for student support services, funding for STEM-related lab equipment, HBCU capital financing and increases in Pell Grants, Opportunity Grants and Federal Work Study.
Earlier in December 2019, the Delegation worked to enact the FUTURE Act that permanently reauthorized $255 million mandatory funding for HBCUs and other Minority Serving Institutions. A temporary lapse in this authorization placed $4.2 million in federal funding for Maryland’s HBCUs at risk.
Scheduled participants included: U.S. Sens. Ben Cardin and Chris Van Hollen; Reps. Steny H. Hoyer, Dutch Ruppersberger, John P. Sarbanes, Anthony Brown and David Trone; and HBCU officials Morgan State University President Dr. David Wilson, Bowie State University President Dr. Aminta Breaux, University of Maryland, Eastern Shore President Dr. Heidi Anderson and incoming Coppin State University President Dr. Anthony Jenkins.