The day of March 24th was an historic moment in higher education, specifically for our historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs). I am very thankful for those who serve as dominant advocates for our HBCUs and of our government officials – federal, state, and local who continuously fight for equity funding and resources for HBCUs. Additionally, I am overly grateful for those who proudly stand on the impact of our HBCUs in the state of Maryland. Maryland is home to four HBCUs that include: Bowie State University, Coppin State University, Morgan State University, and the University of Maryland Eastern Shore.
After fifteen years of battling for equal rights of better state funding that will bring much-needed support to carry on with a high-quality education at the Maryland’s four HBCUs. The battle is only one step further with $577 million over a decade we will accept; however, it is still not equitably enough. Let’s continue the fight for MORE. We applaud House Speaker Adrienne Jones and Senator Charles Sydnor for their willingness in leading this effort to the resolution of this long-standing lawsuit of what defines brighter days for our institutions. Also, I applaud the Legislative Black Caucus for their efforts in this resolution as well.
On March 24th, Bowie State University welcomed Maryland Governor Larry Hogan, along with Senate President Bill Ferguson and House Speaker Adrienne Jones, for the official signing of the legislation lawsuit. As a result of the $577 HBCU Settlement Bill, Morgan State University will receive $24 million, Bowie State $16.7 million, Coppin State University $9 million, and the University of Maryland Eastern Shore $9.7 million in state funds in the fiscal year 2023, and at least $9 million annually thereafter, through the fiscal year 2032. The funds in the settlement are expected to be used for scholarships and financial aid support services, as well as faculty recruitment and development. Also, the funds could be used to expand and improve existing academic programs, including online programs, and the development and implementation of new academic programs.
The ongoing efforts to ‘Campaign For HBCUs’ will carry on to evolve around the educational landscape of our HBCUs. And the fight for equity funding doesn’t just stop here; however, it will keep going for Maryland HBCUs and all other HBCUs that rely on state funding. In the words of President Breaux, HBCUs will continue to be a beacon of hope and promise for those seeking to improve their families and communities through public higher education. And the HBCU Campaign Fund will always advocacy, support and commend the roles of our HBCUs and their vigorous leaders, faculty, and staff.
I am proud to say that truly, We Are HBCUs!