Historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) play an important role in higher education. Since their inception, they have attracted and nurtured intellectuals including Toni Morrison, Thurgood Marshall, and W.E.B. Du Bois, among others. African Americans and other underserved populations sought solace from de jure and de facto segregation at HBCUs.
While African American students can attend predominately white institutions (PWIs), HBCUs continue to produce a significant number of black professionals in education, dentistry, law, medicine, and STEM fields. Generations of African Americans who since have completed undergraduate, graduate, and professional degrees at HBCUs have found well-paying jobs and entered the middle class.
At the same time, despite encountering discriminatory education, employment, and housing practices, many graduates created black enclaves after buying homes, and their children and grandchildren benefitted from their struggles, including the fight to integrate into workspaces. Examining the role of HCBUs not only in higher education but also in directing social dynamics and economic policy outside of institutions is, therefore, paramount.
- Examines historical and contemporary issues contributing to the success of HBCUs
- Investigates the interconnected relationships among race, education, and income
- Highlights how HBCUs created a cadre of black academics and thinkers
- Discusses the role of HBCUs in the global economy and considers how black economic prosperity affects the United States