Dr. Logan Hampton, President of Lane College

On Thursday (June 4), the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions held a hearing titled, “COVID-19: Going Back to College Safely.” The purpose of the hearing was to explore the current challenges and implications of dedications that leaders of institutions of higher education are making as they develop plans to safely reopen colleges and universities this fall. The Committee was interested in hearing recommendations for how colleges and universities could effectively coordinate with state and local public health officials and take into consideration the needs of all students when reopening in August.

Dr. Logan Hampton, President of Lane College in Jackson, Tennessee, served as a witness representing the Historically Black College and University (HBCU) community. Lane College was founded in 1882 by a former slave, Bishop Isaac Lane of the Colored Methodist Church. The College serves as a United Negro College Fund (UNCF) member institution. In his testimony, he highlighted the following needs of the HBCU community for the next stimulus bill to be passed by Congress:

  • An increase in grant aid for students by doubling the maximum Pell Grant award that will help our low-income student properly afford higher education given the negative impacts of the coronavirus (COVID-19);
  • Funding to ensure the safety of students, faculty, and staff prior to re-opening the campus that includes effective COVID-19 testing resources;
  • The need to provide liability protection for HBCUs, and all institutions of higher education, that will allow these institutions to have clear guidelines to confidently remain in compliance and out of fear of frivolous lawsuits;
  • The removal of $62 million cap for the HBCU Capital Financing loan program to allow HBCUs to benefit from the deferment in payments of principal and interest during the full period of the COVID-19 national emergency;
  • The creation of a technology fund to allow institutions and students to access broadband. This fund would supplement any additional funding received by HBCUs that will focus narrowly on broadband support;
  • The ability of HBCUs, and all institutions of higher education, to be eligible for both the Paycheck Protection Program Loans and the Economic Injury Disaster Loans at the Small Business Administration regardless of the number of employees; and
  • The need to allow all institutions of higher education to be eligible to receive loans in the Main Street Lending Program created by the Board of Directors of the Federal Reserve System.

A video of the hearing can be viewed here.

Read the testimony delivered by Dr. Hampton here.


Wednesday, the U.S. Senate introduced H.R. 748 or Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act ensuring just over $1 billion of dedicated funding for institutions like Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs), Tribal Colleges and Universities (TCUs), and other Minority-Serving Institutions (MSIs) in response to the effects of the Coronavirus pandemic on operations. The United Negro College Fund (UNCF) took a leadership role calling on Congress to respond to the needs of HBCUs, which serve a disproportionately high percentage of low-income and first-generation college students. The disruption of classroom-based education to transition to distance learning and even assisting some students with travel back home has put a tremendous unforeseen financial strain on institutions that have historically been underfunded.

“I want to thank the congressional leadership for responding to our call and the needs of HBCUs, and indeed the rest of the higher education community,” said Dr. Michael L. Lomax, UNCF President and CEO. “I call on the House and Senate to swiftly pass this legislation. Also, let me be clear: the COVID-19 pandemic is hitting HBCUs hard. All emergencies that hit the higher education system seem to hit HBCUs harder because we serve mostly Pell Grant eligible students. However, thankfully, this time Congress remembered us, our institutions and our students. Now, we will have the resources to ensure our colleges can make the transition to distance learning platforms that are necessary to continue educating our students.”

Thurgood Marshall College Fund (TMCF), who also played an crucial role in advocating for the COVID-19 relief for HBCUs, applaud Congress and Senate for allocating a plan to necessary fund HBCUs during this critical time.

“The deal developed by the Senate is another powerful example of the Congress’ recognition of the importance of and need to deliver for HBCUs, PBIs and their students,” said Harry L. Williams, TMCF President and CEO. “The road to full financial recovery from this crisis will be a long one for our schools, but the collective engagement and tireless bipartisan advocacy of our community has helped to secure the much needed resources our schools require to both navigate this crisis and continue to pursue their respective missions.”

In addition to the supplemental aid, the CARES Act also authorizes the Department of Education to loosen the restrictions on currently appropriated Title III funds. This additional flexibility will allow schools to put previously restricted funds directly to use in addressing new challenges that our school and their students face during the ongoing health emergency.

Senate Letter Led by Sen. Booker and Sen. Jones on Need for HBCU and MSI Funding

Senate Letter Led by Sen. Scott on Need for HBCU Funding

HBCU, TCU, and MSI Community Letter Advocating for Stimulus Funding


About UNCF

UNCF (United Negro College Fund) is the nation’s largest and most effective minority education organization. To serve youth, the community and the nation, UNCF supports students’ education and development through scholarships and other programs, strengthens its 37 member colleges and universities, and advocates for the importance of minority education and college readiness. UNCF institutions and other historically black colleges and universities are highly effective, awarding nearly 20 percent of African American baccalaureate degrees. Today, UNCF supports more than 60,000 students at more than 1,100 colleges and universities across the country. It’s logo features the UNCF torch of leadership in education and its widely recognized motto, “A mind is a terrible thing to waste”®. Learn more at UNCF.org, or for continuous updates and news, follow UNCF on Twitter at @UNCF.

About TMCF

Established in 1987, the Thurgood Marshall College Fund (TMCF) is the nation’s largest organization exclusively representing the Black College Community. TMCF member-schools include the publicly-supported Historically Black Colleges and Universities and Predominately Black Institutions, enrolling nearly 80% of all students attending black colleges and universities. Though scholarships, capacity building and research initiatives, innovative programs and strategic partnerships, TMCF is a vital resource in the K-12 and higher education space. The organization is also the source of top employers seeking top talent for competitive internships and good jobs. For more information about TMCF, visit www.tmcf.org.

UNCF’s digital campaign “Protecting Our Future” worked to break logjam and finally advance funding permanently for HBCUs and other institutions serving minority populations

HCF applauds and is pleased for the U.S. Senate’s passage of the modified H.R. 2486, the FUTURE Act. The bill will permanently extend $255 million, annually, of mandatory funding for Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs), Tribal Colleges and Universities (TCUs), Hispanic-Serving Institutions (HSIs), and other Minority-Serving Institutions (MSIs) to improve science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) outcomes at those institutions, among other things. Previously, the bill provided mandatory funding for two years. $86 million of the overall total is specific for HBCUs, which has helped these institutions significantly increase STEM outcomes over the last 12 years.

“HCF extends its appreciation to those who worked very diligently to advocate for the need of this very crucial bill that will continuously support our institutions that need it most,” said Demetrius Johnson, Jr., President and CEO, Founder at HBCU Campaign Fund. “I would like to thank the Congress and those organizations which are essential to our HBCUs and MSIs. Without Senator Tim Scott and Doug Jones, our institutions would not have a permanent funding solution that will continue to flourish and pour into aspiring STEM scholars. Thank you to UNCF for their continuous marvelous support and work, their Protect Our Future campaign generated 65,000 letters to the Congress.”

The bill will make the federal student aid application (FAFSA) process more accessible by eliminating up to 22 questions and the process that had required some students to verify IRS documentation with the Department of Education in order for aid to be released.

“The Bipartisan agreement for HBCU funding is a great step in the right direction for the continued sustainability of our beloved institutions,” said Dr. Santarvis Brown, Board Chairman at HBCU Campaign Fund.

The bill will also streamline student loan repayments by eliminating annual paperwork for some 7.7 million federal student loan borrowers on an income-driven plan, which allows them to make payments based on their incomes.


About HBCU Campaign Fund

Founded in 2012, HCF is the vision and brainchild of founder Mr. Demetrius Johnson, Jr. In 2015, HCF incorporated its mission to supporting the significance and raising funds for scholarships and services at HBCUs and MSIs. HCF today remains as a strong advocate for students and higher education. For more information, visit www.hbcucampaignfund.org.

Castell Vaughn Bryant

MIAMI GARDENS – Florida Memorial University, a historically black university located in Miami Gardens, has appointed Castell Vaughn Bryant as its acting president, the school announced.

Bryant will be standing in for interim president Michelle Howard-Vital, who is currently on medical leave. Howard-Vital stepped up following the departure of Dr. Roslyn Clark Artis, who accepted presidency at Benedict College in South Carolina.

According to The Miami Times, FMU board of trustees chairman JoLinda L. Herring announced the changes Thursday afternoon in a written statement. The statement said that Howard-Vital is on medical leave.

“With great dedication and much determination, Florida Memorial University is committed to empowering our students to succeed with exceptional excellence,” said Herring, an attorney. “The change in leadership will help position our university’s common core values and services to our students as well as throughout our community. Dr. Bryant brings both the qualifications and experience needed to strengthen this process. Her love for the students, toppled with her extensive knowledge and awareness of our community and the HBCU environment, are but a few of her stellar attributes. Under her leadership, direction and guidance, we are certain that she will provide stability and focus required as we continue our search efforts for a permanent president.”

Bryant was FMU’s interim chief executive officer and has a long record of experience in leadership positions at HBCUs. She served as president of Miami Dade College North and Medical campuses. In 2007, she was interim president at Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University and interim vice president for academic affairs at Bethune-Cookman University.



The United Negro College Fund (UNCF) wants to send 100 computer science, engineer, and IT-focused students from HBCU’s to take part in an exclusive four-day Silicon Valley experience: tech company tours, startup-tech entrepreneurship workshops, direct recruitment at a Technical Career Fair, career development panels and much more.

The event will take place October 25-29, 2017, in San Mateo, CA. The event is free for all HBCU students who are selected to attend. UNCF will cover travel, lodging and food costs for the trip. Last year, 50 students attended. This year 100 students will be selected.

This is HOW you can be eligibility to attend:

  • To be considered, students must:
  • Maintain a minimum 3.0 GPA
  • Be a U.S. citizen, U.S. national or permanent resident
  • Attend an HBCU (historically black college or university)
  • Be enrolled as a college freshman, sophomore, junior or senior
  • Be majoring in one of these fields:
    • Aerospace Engineering, Computer Engineering, Computer Information Systems, Computer Science, Computer Technology, Electrical Engineering, Engineering Technology, Information Systems or Information Technology

You must apply here by September 4, 2017. Contact Carita Marrow for more details.


About UNCF

UNCF’s mission is to build a robust and nationally-recognized pipeline of under-represented students who, because of UNCF support, become highly-qualified college graduates; and to ensure that our network of 38 member historically black colleges and universities is a respected model of best practice in moving students to and through college. UNCF administers more than 400 programs, including scholarship, internship and fellowship, mentoring, summer enrichment and curriculum and faculty development programs. UNCF envisions a nation where all Americans have equal access to a college education that prepares them for rich intellectual lives, competitive and fulfilling careers, engaged citizenship and service to our nation. Today, UNCF supports more than 60,000 students at over 900 colleges and universities across the country. Michael L. Lomax, Ph.D., is president and CEO.

CHICAGO, IL – UNCF Chicago office will host its annual “A Mind Is…” Gala which will honor Chicago Football Classic co-founders Everett Rand, Larry Huggins and Tim Rand on this Saturday, June 17th at 6 p.m. at the Hyatt Regency Hotel.

This is a major fundraising event for the Chicago area office of UNCF, which serves students in Illinois and Wisconsin. Each year, UNCF recognizes the extraordinary contributions of individuals who have made significant contributions of time, talent and resources to support UNCF’s mission and work, and student scholars who have directly benefited from the generous support of area donors.

(left to right; CFC Co-Founders Everett Rand, Larry Huggins, Tim Rand). Photo creds: Chicago Defender.

This year’s honorees include the co-founders of the Chicago Football Classic (CFC) Everett Rand, Larry Huggins and Tim Rand who started the classic nearly 20 years ago. The CFC is a non-profit, helping students attend and graduate from HBCUs across the country. The CFC has its primary mission promoting long-term success of African-American youth, to achieve academic, personal and professionally oriented excellence, while attending historically black colleges and universities and throughout their future lives.

Honorees also include the chief executive officer and director of the University of Chicago Charter School and managing director of the University of Chicago Urban Education Institute Shayne Evans and Spelman College alumna D’Rita Robinson who is the founder of Chatty Guest, a free app that encourages collaboration, mentorship and global dialogue across disciplines; and to date, the app has been downloaded in more than 51 countries.

To read more about the honorees, visit UNCF Chicago website here.

Tickets are no longer available for this event, but you are still able to donate towards the event and causes of UNCF and its Chicago area office here.





AUSTIN, TX – After a six-month planning phase, UNCF announced Huston-Tillotson University (a historically black university  located in Austin, Texas) as one of 24 colleges and universities that will receive five-year grants totaling $35.3 million for the UNCF Career Pathways Initiative (CPI), a transformative effort to design and implement programs to improve employment outcomes for graduates.

“This CPI opportunity will truly enhance the work we do every day here at Huston-Tillotson University, and will help us achieve our million by providing the resources necessary to give our students an excellent college to career pathway experience,” said Dr. Colette Pierce Burnette, President and CEO of Huston-Tillotson University. “This grant will prepare our students to become powerful additions to the nontraditional workplaces and spaces where they will continue to find success after college. I am extremely grateful to UNCF for their continual support of our mission.”

Made possible through a grant from Lily  Endowment Inc., the UNCF Career Pathways Initiative (CPI) is a unique pilot program for select historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) and predominately  black institutions (PBIs) that is helping them enhance career readiness for their 54,000 enrolled students. Many of these students will be the first in their families to earn college degrees. The majorities of students are from low-to-moderate income families and must receive federal financial aid to pursue their undergraduate studies.

At Huston-Tillotson, CPI will provide a seamless path from college to career. This July, approximately 60 incoming freshmen considering majoring in Communications, Kinesiology, Computer Science or Business Administration will join the University’s Summer Bridge Program; two gateway courses specifically designed to introduce those students to what will eventually become four years of related CPI work. As part of Summer Bridge, students will be assigned to a Career Coach, complete career assessments and workshops, participate in leadership building exercises, and work with their assigned Career Couch to launch a startup company.

Earlier this year, Huston-Tillotson University submitted a proposal that reflects a commitment to strengthening career advising and mentoring, enhancing curricula, and supporting integrated co-curricular engagement. As part of CPI, the selected institutions will develop a range of academic programs, student internships, industry partnerships, specialty certifications, and faculty development as they forge a new model for career readiness.

A complete list of colleges and universities receiving the grants can be viewed here.

“These colleges and universities show promise in  significantly addressing the urgent challenges facing African American college students and graduates.” said Dr. Michael L. Lomax, UNCF president and CEO. “We heartily congratulate Hust0n-Tillotson University and the 23 other institutions chosen to lead this important work.”

UNCF launched CPI in December 2015 through a rigorous and competitive multi-phased grant process that targeted 87 eligible public and private HBCUs and PBIs. In the first phase, UNCF made planning grants to 30 institutions. In the final phase, UNCF has chosen 24 colleges and universities for implementation grants. Of those schools, 15 institutions will receive individual awards ranging from $1 millions to $1.5 million. Nine of the institutions have been selected for three cluster grants, in which each cluster of three institutions will collaborate intentionally to achieve their shared outcomes. Each cluster will receive up to $6 million.


About Huston-Tillotson University

Huston-Tillotson University is Austin’s oldest institution of higher education. Huston-Tillotson awards undergraduates, four-year degrees in business, education, the humanities, natural sciences, social sciences, science and technology. A multi-cultural, multi-ethnic, and multi-faith institution,  the University welcomes students of all ages, races and religions. To learn more about Huston-Tillotson University, visit www.htu.edu.


About Lilly Endowment Inc.

Lily Endowment Inc. is a private philanthropic foundation created in 1937 by three members of the Lilly family –  J.K. Lilly Sr. and sons J.K. Jr. and Eli –  through gifts of stock in their pharmaceutical business, Eli Lily and Company. Although those gifts remain the financial bedrock of the Endowment, the Endowment is a separate entity from the company, with a distinct governing board, staff, and location. In keeping with its founders’ wishes, the Endowment supports the causes of community development, educations and religion. Although it maintains a special commitment to its hometown, Indianapolis, and home state Indiana, it does support the efforts of national significance particularly in the field of religion and on a invitational basis disaster relief and recovery efforts and programs that enhance higher education opportunities for African American, Latinos and Native Americans across the country. More information can be found at www.lillyendowment.org.


About UNCF

UNCF (United Negro College Fund) is the nation’s largest and most effective minority education organization. To serve youth, the community and the nation, UNCF supports students’ educations and development through scholarships and other programs, strengthens in 37 member colleges and universities, and advocates for the importance of minority education and college readiness. UNCF institutions and other historically black colleges and universities are highly effective, awarding nearly 20 percent of African American baccalaureate degrees. UNCF awards more than $100 million in scholarships annually and administers more than 400 programs, including scholarship, internship and fellowship, mentoring, summer enrichment, and curriculum and faculty development programs. Today, UNCF supports more than 60,000 students at more than 1,100 colleges and universities across the country. Its logo features the UNCF torch of leadership in education and its widely recognized trademark: A mind is a terrible thing to waste. Learn more at www.uncf.org, or for continuous news and updates, follow UNCF on Twitter, @UNCF and #UNCFCPI



United Negro College Fund (UNCF) led a national social media campaign on yesterday (October 26), urging the Senate to provide at least $5 million for the HBCU Historic Preservation Program, as passed by the House before Congress adjourns.

“HBCUs have a significant place in American history and provide incredible value and values to minority and low-income students, and to communities in which they reside,” said Cheryl Smith, UNCF senior vice president of public policy and government affairs. “The HBCU Historic Preservation Program serves as an essential purpose to HBCUs, which have a special place in the fabric of American history, culture and education. We look forward to working with the Senate to ensure final passage before the 114th Congress adjourns.”

According to UNCF, no federal funds have been provided since 2009 for the restoration of historic buildings at HBCUs; however this year there is a chance to secure funding in the FY 2017 budget.

UNCF suggest several ways to help #PreserveHBCUs. One of the suggestion is to post pictures on social media of a historic building at an HBCU campus that need restoration (Twitter tweet example below). Second suggestion is to write a letter and e-mail or tweet to your Senator, you can view their letter here, which you can personalize and send directly to both of your U.S. Senators. It’s as simple as entering your zip code.

“Thanks to Congressman James E. Clyburn (D-SC), a proud HBCU alumnus, this important bill is moving one step closer to the finish line, but further action is desperately required,” said UNCF President and CEO, Dr. Michael Lomax. “HBCUs are indeed national treasures and we invite everyone to join us today in supporting the restoration of more than 700 historic buildings on HBCU campuses.”

HBCU historic preservation was a signature of UNCF initiative from 1995 through 1999 when UNCF partnered with the National Park Service to support the rehabilitation of historic structures on 10 HBCU campuses. Historic preservation remains a UNCF strategic priority today as several HBCUs this year are celebrating or approaching 150 years of existence.

“HCF is proud to join UNCF as advocates of HBCUs in this vital movement of  making a move and a voice in obtaining Congress attention in moving this initiative forward to receiving the appropriate funding that it deserves. HBCUs are absolutely national treasures and the history of these prestigious institutions as well as the buildings should remain in the American history for years forthcoming. The tradition and history of our HBCU institutions and historic buildings are what continues to add value to the students who these institutions produce as our future leaders. HCF will strive to participate in all ways we can in assisting UNCF  to preserve historic buildings on HBCU campuses and we ask that all our supporters will stand with us as well to assist UNCF in making a better day to a beautification of the historic beautiful HBCU campuses across the nation.” said HCF President and Founder Demetrius Johnson Jr.

For more information regarding UNCF #PreserveHBCUs Campaign visit here.

Source: https://www.uncf.org/news/entry/uncf-leads-national-campaign-on-oct.-26-to-promote-hbcu-historic-preservati.