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Introduction

The Center for the Study of HBCUs was established in 2020 to serve as an incubator of Black intellectual capital at Black colleges. The center is dedicated to supporting and ensuring the sustainability of HBCUs through effective governance, visionary leadership, and student success.

This report, the center’s first, examines how the Biden administration’s education agenda might affect the nation’s 100-plus historically Black colleges and universities.

Overview

The main section of the report synthesizes the Biden-Harris HBCU agenda. It includes many promising proposals. Still, HBCUs have endured a long history of broken promises and inequitable treatment. The Biden-Harris team must acknowledge that history and accept the science that exposes decades of funding gaps. The center will use its research and programming to regularly assess the federal government’s progress toward delivering on the promises made to HBCUs.

Here are some key investments in the Biden agenda that relate to HBCUs:

  • $30 billion to increase Pell Grants: This would double the current value of the federal Pell Grant.
  • $10 billion to create a federal Title I program for higher education.
  • $10 billion to strengthen research capacity at HBCUs.
  • $20 billion to build or rebuild infrastructure at the nation’s 100-plus HBCUs.
  • More than $5 billion to reduce educational debt: The plan also would encourage the development of new graduate degree programs.
  • $3 billion to promote student success: The Biden-Harris plan devotes $750 million each year to Title III and Title V funds that serve as critical lifelines at HBCUs.