The nation's first Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) were founded before the end of the U.S. Civil War. However, most were established in the post-Civil War era, through the Freedmen's Bureau and other organizations such as the American Missionary Association (AMA) when the U.S. federal government initiated an organized effort to educate newly freed slaves (Hoffman, 1996). Additional support for HBCUs arose from the second Morrill Act of 1890, which provided opportunities for all races in those states where Black students were excluded from public higher education. Thus, since their founding in the 1800s, the nation's HBCUs have had as their missions to provide access to higher education for the disenfranchised and underprivileged of our society. Today, these institutions continue to make significant contributions in educating African American and other underrepresented minority students, particularly in the areas of science and engineering. Although they comprise only 3% of U.S. institutions of higher education, HBCUs in 2008 awarded 20% of the baccalaureate degrees earned by Blacks in science and engineering (National Science Foundation, 2011).
Mack, K.M., Rankins, C.M. and Winston, C.E. (2011), "Chapter 8 Black Women Faculty at Historically Black Colleges and Universities: Perspectives for a National Imperative", Frierson, H.T. and Tate, W.F. (Ed.) Beyond Stock Stories and Folktales: African Americans' Paths to STEM Fields (Diversity in Higher Education, Vol. 11), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Leeds, pp. 149-164. https://doi.org/10.1108/S1479-3644(2011)0000011012
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