Why African Americans should attend HBCUs

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After reading this title you’re probably thinking that most African Americans would want to attend an Historically Black College or University (HBCU) for a higher education. If you agree with the statement that I just made then you’re correct. HBCUs are better for African Americans to attend then Predominately White Institutions (PWIs) on many levels. Here’s why I say this.

According to www.vicksburgpost.com, the number of students enrolled at Alcorn State University (ASU) increased. The university also has a record number of scholar students, according to the latest figures released by the State College Board of Mississippi. The university has a  total of 3,753 students, which is an increase from last year’s total of 3,716. The increase is due in part to the large class of 2022, which is represented by 711 students. Being a current student enrolled at Alcorn, I know that these statistics are true. The number of incoming Freshman increases drastically each year. The campus is not big enough to accommodate everyone.

I honestly think HBCUs are becoming very popular and one of the reasons that I think this is happening is because of the way HBCUs are starting to be portrayed. They are beginning to be glorified on social media. People are always talking about how great their experience is. In my opinion, besides recruiting, this really gets young African American high schooler’s attention. They see the differences between experiences at HBCUs and PWIs like at football games and the comradery of the students.

According to www.insidehighered.com HBCU’s tuition, on average is $6,000 less a year than PWIs and are, in many cases, more willing to work with students in financial distress than other institutions. HBCUs consistently outperform their white counterparts in retaining and graduating students and providing an education to those who need it the most. I agree with this because this is one of the main reasons why I wanted to attend an HBCU for a higher education. The tuition prices are not expensive and being a first generation college student made me gravitate towards Alcorn because of the cost of attendance.

African Americans who attend black colleges are more likely to be more successful than those who attend PWIs. I’m not just stating my opinion but facts. 20 of the 25 percent of African Americans who graduate college, and that are successful, come from a black institution. 

I have had the opportunity to attend an HBCU and a PWI and I must say that I prefer my experience here at Alcorn. Being a minority going to a PWI was very different. At PWIs the classes are much larger. As an African American attending a Primarily White Institution you’re overlooked. Some think you’re either an athlete or someone that will eventually drop out. After coming to Alcorn I knew that coming to an HBCU was for me. For once I was the majority on campus. The classes were smaller and my professors actually knew my name. To make it even better the tuition was cheaper. HBCU campuses are like a big family where everyone will lend you a hand if you’re in need.

African Americans should attend HBCUs because they were here for us when no other schools were. In the late 1800s blacks were not allowed to attend white institutions so African Americans had no choice but to attend black institutions. HBCUs were here for us so we should be there for them by attending them and keeping them going. As African Americans I think we should persuade our children to attend HBCUs.

Trevin Day is a Junior Broadcast/Mass Communications major from Lafayette, Louisiana. He will be a contributor for The Campus Chronicle for the 2018/2019 academic year.

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