HCF President & CEO Demetrius Johnson Jr. Statement on President Biden’s FY24 Budget Proposal

Earlier this month, President Joe Biden and his administration released the FY 2024 proposed budget. We appreciate their robust attentiveness and commitment to investing in higher education, Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs), and Minority-Serving Institutions (MSIs).

The President’s FY24 recommends a budget to improve college affordability and provide free community college, increasing the maximum Pell Grant by $500 to help low and middle-income students overcome financial barriers. It is setting efforts to increase the maximum Pell Grant award by $900 over the past two years and provides a path to double the maximum award by 2029. The budget also expands free community college across the Nation through a new Federal-State partnership. In addition, the budget provides two years of subsidized tuition for students from families earning less than $125,000 enrolled in a four-year Historically Black College and University (HBCU), Tribally Controlled College and University (TCCU), or Minority-Serving Institution (MSI).

The proposed budget also supports students through completion, which will support strategies to improve student retention, transfer, and completion rates by investing in the Federal TRIO Programs, Graining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs, and Postsecondary Student Success Grants Program.

Additionally, the President’s FY24 budget increases institutional capacity at HBCUs, TCCUs, MSIs, and under-resourced institutions, including community colleges, by providing an increase of $429 million above the 2023 enacted level. This significant funding includes $350 million for four-year HBCUs, TCCUs, and MSIs to expand these institutions’ research and development infrastructure.

I appreciate the President and his administration’s proposed investment to strengthen Civil Rights enforcement through the Department of Higher Ed’s Office of Civil Rights. The budget would provide $178 million to OCR, which is a 27-percent increase above the 2023 enacted level. This funding would ensure that OCR has sufficient capacity to protect equal access to education through the enforcement of civil rights laws.

HCF looks forward to continuing working with other higher education supportive entities and organizations and advocating for HBCUs and MSIs to ensure that the President’s proposed budget is invested in those who need it most for a better future.


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