Historically Black Colleges and Universities

Historically Black Colleges and Universities


HBCU stands for “Historically Black Colleges & Universities,” institutions of higher learning founded before 1964.

Their primary mission was originally to provide a safe space where African Americans could receive an education following the Civil War, though students of any race or ethnicity may attend an HBCU.

There are currently 101 HBCUs in America—half public, half private institutions.

Before the mid-1900s, it was extremely difficult for black students to receive an education. The law prohibited the education of African Americans in many areas across the United States. Only a handful of institutions allowed African Americans to enroll into college.

Oftentimes, black churches were responsible for the elementary and secondary education of African Americans to prepare them for greater advancement in society.

During this time, black Americans like Frederick Douglass had to rely on self-education and informal educational settings in order to receive any sort of schooling.

Fredercik Douglas

The first HBCUs were actually created before the Civil War, and most were founded in the late 1800s.

Between 1861 and 1910, the American Missionary Association (AMA) and the Freedmen’s Bureau were primarily responsible for creating colleges and universities for African Americans.

HBCUs were created as a place where African Americans could pursue higher education and gain professional skills. Most were founded in the South, but some were also created in the Midwest and Northeast, where there was still limited access to quality higher education for black students.

Today, 9% of all African American college students attend historically black colleges and universities.

The number of students enrolled in HBCUs has increased by 35% since 1976!

These days, HBCUs are also open to any students that want to attend. Today, 22% of all students enrolled at HBCUs are of other races.

Why Attend an HSBCU

HBCUs typically have small student-to-faculty ratios. Students attending HBCUs report feeling socially and academically supported by their institution and their peers.

African American students at HBCUs report feeling culturally connected and that attending an HBCU gave them the opportunity to learn more about their history.

HBCU generate a significant number of all bachelor’s degrees earned by African Americans in STEM (science, technology, engineering, & mathematics fields. They also graduate the most African Americans seeking doctoral and engineering degrees in the nation.

The average cost of attendance at an HBCU is 26% lower than the average total cost at all four-year non-profit institutions.

The alumni association is very active and engaged, providing great opportunities for networking that can help you develop your future career.

RaiseMe HSBC College Search

Using the RaiseMe College Search, you have the ability to learn in-depth about a college or university. Below is a typical college information page:

Cost Chart

List of HSBCUs on RaiseMe

Alcorn State University – Acorn, MS
Spellman College – Atlanta, GA
Fayetteville State University, Fayetteville, AK
Morehouse College, Atlanta, GA
Howard University, Washington D.C.
University of the District of Columbia, Washington D.C.
Tuskegee University, Tuskegee AL
Lane College, Nashville, TN