So why should a black student attend an HBCU? That is a question many black students face when making their choice on what college is best for them. In some black people’s opinion, they believe that HBCUs are the only route to go for a young black student trying to get an college education, while others also believe that going to a majority college may be more beneficial for that student. Here is an answer that could settle this debate: It really just depends on who the person is. There are some non- HBCUs who have a mostly black enrollment such as Temple University, Chicago State University, Wayne State University, and some people feel that they’re doing just fine. An African American student may feel just as comfortable at a majority college because of the large black population.
How Does an HBCU Benefit You?
The question comes up a lot among black students if an HBCU is really better. When asked this same question, Angela Boyd, associate director of university admissions of Hampton University, said in the Tom Joyner Foundation’s How to Prepare for College, “They give a sense of self-worth that the student may not get from other institutions.” Boyd believes that whether the student is black or white, being able to see other students that are the same color provides a better atmosphere and helps you succeed. Being around students who are the same color and share the same goals is an experience that every black student should have whenever they’re getting a college education.
What is Hurting HBCUs?
There are some things that could scare black students away from HBCUs. One is the limited resources for financial aid. With the expenses of a college education constantly rising, one may ask “Why should I attend an HBCU when I could go to a majority college that can offer better financial aid packages.” There are now more HBCUs struggling with their finances, and with that comes less scholarships and poor financial aid packages. Unfortunately, a lot of students are left up to that decision, and they’re likely to choose the option that will be most cost efficient for them.
So it really just comes back to our main premise: Why should a black student attend an HBCU? If a black student wants to share an experience with people of the same color trying to achieve the same goals, HBCUs are the place to be. Even though there are aspects about HBCUs that can be unattractive, you will still experience great things. With that comes memories you can share with your people for a lifetime. Being a young black man, I feel that there is no better self-fulfillment than that.
By: Jeremy Eackles, TJF Summer Intern