A Primer: The ABCs of HBCUs

Ann McClure's picture

Most of the nation’s HBCUs (historically black colleges and universities) were established in the decades following the Civil War.

These institutions were created primarily in Southern states to educate the sons and daughters of former slaves and successive generations of black Americans. Many began with religious affiliations, which continue to this day.

But to imply that all HBCUs — or even most HBCUs — are alike, would be a gross distortion of reality.

For starters, more than one-third of the nation’s HBCUs are two-year schools or community colleges. Of the 70 or so four-year schools, they are roughly divided between public and private colleges.

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