Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) have an excellent academic track record. While only about 17 percent of black undergraduate students attend an HBCU, more than 28 percent of African-Americans who receive a bachelor’s degrees obtain them from an HBCU. These colleges and universities are also leading institutions in awarding degrees to African-American students in the life sciences, physical sciences, mathematics and engineering programs.
Thanks to an agreement signed March 17, 2015 between the California Community Colleges and several HBCUs, California community college students who complete certain academic requirements are guaranteed transfer to a participating HBCU.
HBCUs were established primarily to serve the higher education needs of the African-American community, however they are open to students of all ethnicities. There are more than 100 HBCUs in the country, with most located in the South and on the East Coast. Most award bachelor’s degrees in many fields. Some also award master’s and doctorate degrees.
Many historically black colleges and universities were founded after the Civil War, in response to legislation (the Morrell Act) signed by President Lincoln creating land grant colleges in the states. However, seventeen states, mostly in the South, would not grant money to black colleges. As a result, further legislation was adopted in the 1890s requiring the states to establish a second land grant act that would provide funding for black colleges.
The goal of the California Community Colleges HBCU Transfer Guarantee Program is to educate students about additional transfer opportunities at these institutions and develop pathways that will ultimately contribute to an increase in baccalaureate degree attainment.