What comes to mind when you hear the word “HBCU”? For me, I immediately think about community, people serving up looks on campus, the Divine 9, and school pride. But, I’m sure the word probably recalls fond thoughts for you, too, as historically Black colleges and universities are undeniable cultural pillars in the Black community. HBCUs have an immense impact on Black culture, and we’re going to get into the most important reasons why HBCUs still matter to this day:
HBCU campuses inspire success and collaboration.
Walking through an HBCU campus can be an electrifying experience, and if you know, you know. Students on campus feel more at home surrounded by supportive faculty and students, and an HBCU is the perfect breeding ground for new ideas.
HBCUs instill essential values into students.
It’s not uncommon to find a church on an HBCU campus, and most HBCUs make it a point to teach students the importance of faith, hard work, perseverance, and more. In addition, HBCUs train their students up as leaders and remind them of the greats who came before them.
HBCUs are a vehicle of Black liberation.
Remember when I said HBCUs are a breeding ground for ideas? Black intellectuals, artists, and revolutionaries thrive on Black campuses, and without HBCUs like Howard University, our entire understanding of equality and access would not look the same today. HBCUs have birthed protests and movements that continue to shake up our country to this day.
HBCUs help close the racial wealth gap.
It’s no secret that Black college graduates leave school with more student debt than white students. But as HBCUs help more Black students earn their degrees, these same graduates now have a chance to get a better paying job to tackle their debt and eventually build wealth.
Though HBCUs have made a significant and continuous impact on Black culture, they are at risk due to financial issues, low attendance, and more. However, HBCUs have made a mark on our community for over 100 years, so let’s do our part to support them and the future leaders that attend them.