Tag Archives: HBCU

Is There Still a Place for HBCUs In Trump’s New America?

By most conservative estimates, the nation’s historically Black colleges and universities are on life support. A combination of gaps in federal and state funding, alumni contributions and student enrollment has many of the institutions in this essential portion of the Black education portfolio desperately seeking options, with several close to shutting their doors.

While the recent chain of “misstatements” by the Trump administration represents the perceived lack of faith the Black community has with Republican promises to protect Black education, it actually represents a lack of sensitivity and understanding of how precarious a situation Black higher education faces today.

“We are deeply concerned about the proposals highlighted for the U.S. Department of Education, which include flat funding for the core Title III Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) program and deep cuts to federal student aid programs,” wrote Michael L. Lomax, president and CEO of the United Negro College Fund in a letter to the OMB.

“The proposed $3.9 billion cut to Pell Grant funds would undercut needed reforms to boost the purchasing power of Pell Grants for financially needy students, including the 70 percent of HBCU students who receive Pell Grants to earn college degrees. The proposed elimination of Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants, which supplement Pell awards to the poorest students to pay college tuition, would negatively impact more than 55,000 HBCU students who rely on this assistance to go to and through college. Reductions to Federal Work Study could impact more than 26,000 HBCU students who receive work-study jobs that not only help pay for college expenses but also enhance their employment prospects.“

While “HBCU” may be a relatively new designation, the distinction refers to the Southern states’ refusal to integrate higher education. The Morrill Acts of 1862 and 1890 allowed for federal one-to-one funding with the states for the purpose of starting and operating land-grant colleges. This funding, however, can only be made available to states that offer access to the land-grant colleges to African-Americans. The institutions that would become the HBCUs were attempts by the Southern states to qualify for Morrill Act funding while not having to integrate any of their schools

While African-American enrollment in HBCUs has dropped to nine percent of Blacks enrolled in college and while the HBCUs represent only three percent of the national higher education portfolio, the 100 HBCUs graduated 15 percent of all the bachelor degrees African-Americans received in 2013-2014. According to the Thurgood Marshall College Fund, 80 percent of all Black judges, 50 percent of all Black lawyers and non-HBCU professors, 40 percent of all Black engineers and 40 percent of all Black members of Congress are HBCU graduates.

HBCUs continue to be the leading source of Black higher education — especially, for low-income Blacks — in large part because they can offer a specialized focus in a largely nondiscriminative environment. However, with Black enrollment in HBCUs dropping and with the closure of Saint Paul’s College and Lewis College of Business in 2013 and the potential closing of Wilberforce, South Carolina State University and Cheney, one must ask if the HBCUs have “run their course”? If not, is there a way to save them?

The Question of Federal Funding

The chain of Trump administration fumbles regarding HBCUs — starting with the president’s assertion that funding HBCUs may be unconstitutional because it is race-based funding and continuing through the recent booing and heckling of U.S. Department of Education Secretary Betsy Devos during a commencement speech at Bethune-Cookman — represents an unease and sense of perceived insensitivity from Washington. While Trump has said he will do more for HBCUs than any other president, for example, a deep dive into the statements he already made suggest otherwise.

With Trump’s Feb. 28 executive order transferring oversight of HBCUs from the U.S. Department of Education to the White House, the Trump administration took symbolic and factual ownership of the federal government’s role with HBCUs. While Trump’s “America First” budget proposal seeking to maintain last year’s initial budgeting of $492 million to HBCUs suggests a commitment to honor that promise, the devil is being found in the details. According to New America Foundation estimates, the Trump proposal would actually slash funding to HBCUs by 15 percent once 2016’s additional discretionary funding is factored in.

Worse, the White House’s call for cuts to the Department of Education’s budget means a $1.3-billion reduction to the Pell Grant Program’s $10.6-billion surplus for 2017, with another $3.9 billion in cuts proposed for 2018. While it is unreasonable to think that such cuts can be introduced into this year’s budget at this point of the process, the notion of the recommendation is causing confusion between the administration’s thoughts and actions concerning HBCUs.

With 70 percent of all HBCU students requiring federal student grants and work study programs and with the Trump administration additionally planning to eliminate the Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants, Trump’s walked-back comment on the unconstitutionality of HBCU funding seems now to be a moment of truth in a storm of political spin.

“My Administration shall treat provisions that allocate benefits on the basis of race, ethnicity, and gender … in a manner consistent with the requirement to afford equal protection of the laws under the Due Process Clause of the Constitution’s Fifth Amendment,” Trump wrote in his signing statement for H.R. 244 on May 5. Experts feel that Trump may not have understood the legal underpinnings of HBCU federal funding or the notion that the HBCU designation does not refer to the member schools’ demographics, but the mission and year of founding, when authoring the statement.

“With the advent of integration, Black students gained a plethora of new and exciting educational opportunities. High-achieving Black students are intensely recruited by well-endowed institutions in a position to provide full scholarships,” said Felicia Davis, a former United Negro College Fund official and director of the Building Green Initiative at Clark Atlanta University.

“Cash-strapped HBCUs serve a disproportionate share of lower- and moderate-income students. These institutions are dependent upon tuition from students that are dependent upon financial aid and student loans. This challenge is exacerbated by the fact that many HBCUs strive to serve students that lack a quality high school education. For some time, HBCUs were still able to recruit and sustain based upon their exceptional legacy. Millennial students seemed far removed from the era of segregation and even the civil rights movement was receding into history.”

A Part of the Puzzle

Blaming the Trump administration for all of HBCUs’ financial problems is both unfair and shortsighted. A bigger part of the problem existed long before the 2016 general election.

Per a 2013 report from the Association of Public and Land-Grant Universities, HBCUs in Arkansas, Delaware, Florida, Kentucky, Missouri, North Carolina, South Carolina, Texas, Virginia, and West Virginia have reportedly not received the proper state allocations they are entitled to by law.

The Morrill Act of 1890 creates one-to-one financial support for the land-grant colleges with the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the hosting state. While the USDA met its end of the HBCU funding agreement, the states only matched $188 million to the USDA’s $244 million between 2010 and 2012. The Morrill Acts provide no punishment for states that fail to meet their funding obligations. The schools themselves are obligated to match up to 50 percent of the USDA’s funds in the absence of state funding to maintain continual federal funding.

This is creating a situation where HBCUs are increasingly becoming trigger-shy in seeking grants that require matching state funds. This is a second strike for schools that do not have a strong tradition of research and development, a key component of government and charitable grant securement.

This is also creating the illusion that the Southern states are engaging in picking winners for educational funding between HBCUs and other land-grant colleges, which tend to be larger, predominately White universities.

The problem with slashes to state and federal funding is compounded by the continuing nationwide trend of millennials foregoing college to go directly into the job market. Total post-secondary enrollment in the United States has dropped 1.4 percent from fall 2015 to fall 2016, extending the declining streak to five years. While most of this figure can be attributed to students over the age of 24 opting out of continued education and a major rejection of “for-profit” colleges, enrollment from recent high school graduates also is declining.

As non-research schools, HBCUs rely principally on government funding, student tuition and alumni contributions to pay the bills. With alumni investment with HBCUs falling below levels found at PWIs, many HBCU endowments have been depleted to the point that school-based financial aid and capital projects have been ignored.

 

Finding Solutions

The road to closing the attainment and wealth gaps between African-Americans and whites is education. If HBCUs are important toward the employment viability of the African-American community, then preserving them should be a priority.

Unfortunately, HBCUs carry psychological baggage that may be causing pause in the current conservative administration. “Many of those who argue that public Black colleges should not operate at the public’s expense do so because they consider these institutions to be ‘racially identifiable’,” the policy brief “Comprehensive Funding Approaches for Historically Black Colleges and Universities” by Marybeth Gasman reads.

“Missing from this argument is that white institutions also are racially identifiable. Too often, diversity or integration is defined as ‘start with white people and add people of color.’ It is also possible, as HBCUs have shown, to begin with a base of Black students and add whites, Asians and Latinos. HBCU allies and those within the HBCU community need to make sure that others understand that HBCUs are not ‘vestiges of segregation.’”

HBCUs are finding themselves in the crosshairs of the hyper-partisanship that has consumed the nation. The booing of Devos and the revoked invitation of U.S. Senator John Cornyn (R-TX) from being the commencement speaker at Texas Southern University is creating a situation that the people being insulted by these gestures are the very same people controlling the schools’ fate.

This represents a certain level of fatalism that HBCUs have engaged in. Failure to make themselves more attractive to students, to reach out to alumni, and to restructure more toward research and STEM preparedness have led many to think that HBCUs are suffering from a self-inflicted wound that the government happens to be rubbing salt in.

“I believe the enrollment lag can primarily be attributed to four things: ‘degree quality,’ a lack of recruitment efforts, feeder school partnerships and financial aid,” Nijinsky Dix, assistant director for Trio programs at Notre Dame, said to Atlanta Black Voices. “The conversation regarding the quality of one’s degree has always existed.”

“Due to the perceptions of HBCUs as [they compare] to predominately white institutions, degrees earned from Black institutions are deemed as subpar due to a lack of or inadequate resources, faculty and wavering admission standards. For instance, if one were to review the U.S. World News report for best colleges, an HBCU does not appear until No. 124 – Howard University.”

Dix points out that a lack of high school recruitment, inadequate financial assistance and the nonexistence of strategical partnerships — which were instrumental to her enrollment in a HBCU — are working to turn away Black students from HBCUs.

The health of HBCUs lies in breaking down misperceptions. Not only must HBCUs work to help allay white fears that HBCU funding somehow disadvantages non-Black students, but they also must convince the Black community that they are not just a part of the past but a key to the future.

How this could be accomplished is yet to be determined.

“Virtually all endowments are race-based – just as it is at Harvard, as well as Howard,” Felicia Davis added. “One is historically and predominately white, while the other is Black. The difference in magnitude of their endowments can be attributed to the fact that one group labored without compensation, placing it at an economic disadvantage. Education remains a vital key to closing persistent gaps and ensuring America’s greatness for generations.

“The future of HBCUs rests largely with the Black community. Judging by the student demand for diversity, cultural validation and creative authenticity, institutions known for advancing justice and human rights have the potential to attract students from diverse backgrounds as long as the commitment to academic excellence and productive student outcomes is honored.”

By Frederick Reese/AtlantaBlackStar

Posted by The NON-Conformist

Trump questions whether key funding source for historically black colleges is constitutional


President Trump talks with leaders of historically black colleges and universities before posing for a group photo in the Oval Office in February. (Brendan Smialowski/Agence-France Presse via Getty Images)

In February, President Trump invited leaders from historically black colleges and universities to the White House, a move they hoped signaled his support for the institutions and showed an effort to give them more clout in his administration. But critics had a more cynical description of the Oval Office meeting: a photo op.

Those naysayers got more ammunition Friday after the White House released a signing statement connected to the recently approved federal funding measure. Tucked away in the last paragraph, the White House announced that it would treat a program that helps HBCUs get low-cost construction loans “in a manner consistent with the (Constitutional) requirement to afford equal protection of the laws.”

People in higher education circles worried that the statement meant that the president was planning to get rid of a capital financing program that helps historically black colleges repair, renovate and build new facilities. Congress approved the program in 1992 after finding that “HBCUs often face significant challenges in accessing traditional funding resources at reasonable rates,” according to the Education Department.

“I would rather have Trump do nothing with HBCUs — not even know they exist,” Marybeth Gasman, a University of Pennsylvania professor who has researched HBCU history, told The Washington Post. “He will see them as a handout. He doesn’t understand that he was given a leg up by his rich father. He doesn’t see that other people need help from programs because of past discrimination and inequity.”

Trump’s signing statement was blasted by Rep. John Conyers Jr. (Mich.), the ranking Democrat on the Judiciary Committee, and Rep. Cedric L. Richmond (D-La.), the chair of the Congressional Black Caucus.

“Trump’s statement is not only misinformed factually, it is not grounded in any serious constitutional analysis,” their joint statement said. “For a President who pledged to reach out to African Americans and other minorities, this statement is stunningly careless and divisive. We urge him to reconsider immediately.”

The White House said on Saturday that none of the objections cited in Trump’s signing statement signaled immediate policy changes, but were intended to preserve the president’s legal options down the line.

Trump meets with Congressional Black Caucus

 President Trump on March 22 met with members of the Congressional Black Caucus at the White House. “African American citizens have given so much to this country,” Trump said. (The Washington Post)

Then, late Sunday, the president himself tried to clarify the signing statement, saying it “does not affect my unwavering support for HBCUs and their critical education missions.”

“In February of this year, I signed an Executive Order pledging to strengthen the capacity of HBCUs to provide the highest-quality education; to ensure equitable opportunities for HBCUs to participate in Federal programs; and to increase the number of college-educated Americans who feel empowered and able to advance the common good at home and abroad,” Trump said in a statement. “My commitment to the above-stated goals remains unchanged.”

The signing statement was noticed by the United Negro College Fund, which told The Post it had an informal conversation with administration officials about the HBCU loan program. The takeaway: It’s too soon to worry.

“We’re not overly alarmed at this point, based on informal reassurances and just our own knowledge of how these funding statement get put together,” Cheryl L. Smith, UNCF senior vice president of public policy and government affairs, told The Post.

She called the White House’s statement part of a “mixed record” from the administration toward HBCUs since Trump took office in January.

Education Secretary Betsy DeVos’s first visit to a school was to Howard University, the federally chartered historically black college in the District.

And in February, after the Oval Office meeting with HBCU leaders, Vice President Pence told them, “The president and I admire the contributions of historically black colleges and universities.” He also said the Trump administration is committed to ensuring that HBCUs “get the credit and attention they deserve.”

The origins of HBCUs and why they are now struggling

Historically black colleges and universities were created before the 1960s. Many of them are now struggling financially, and the Trump administration says they will help.(Claritza Jimenez/The Washington Post)

But many were offended when DeVos issued a statement after the meeting that praised historically black colleges as pioneers of school choice. The schools were founded at a time of racial segregation. DeVos clarified her remarks the next day, making clear that African Americans had very limited educational opportunities at the time HBCUs were started.

At that meeting, Republican lawmakers met with nearly all the HBCU presidents, listening to their concerns and priorities. The outreach from Republican leaders, however, did not translate into increased funding for the schools in the president’s budget proposal.

Historically black colleges have often looked to Democrats as natural allies, but over the past 50 years or so, HBCUs have had bipartisan support, with relatively steady funding over that time.

Student and parent debt and low graduation rates have long been concerns for many historically black colleges, but their proponents say they are essential in educating black leaders.

According to the Education Department, three-quarters of all doctorates awarded to black people, three-quarters of all black officers in the U.S. military and 80 percent of black federal judges got their undergraduate degrees at an HBCU.

Johnny C. Taylor, Jr., the president and chief executive of the Thurgood Marshall College Fund, praised the budget proposal in a written statement Friday. “Let me be clear: flat spending for HBCUs in a president’s budget that calls for a 13 percent funding decrease to the Department of Education is a win!

“… Not everyone is happy though — some are critical of President Trump because they believe he should have significantly increased the budget for HBCUs.

“Such notions are naive in the current political environment in Washington, now run by Republicans who’ve vowed to reduce the size of government.”

In a public statement Saturday, Taylor responded to the signing provision, saying the fund had spoken to the administration and was assured there was “absolutely no plan to eliminate or challenge this program.

“We have shared with the White House our assertion that the HBCU program is not at all a race-based government effort and therefore doesn’t raise any equal protection or due process concerns because participation in the program is limited to HBCUs. HBCUs serve some of the most diverse populations in this nation and three TMCF member-schools enroll more white students than black students: West Virginia State University, Bluefield State College, and Lincoln University of Missouri.”

The United Negro College Fund, in a statement, said that they had sought clarification from the White House, as well, about the statement, and received informal assurance from White House officials that the paragraph is not intended to indicate any policy change toward HBCUs and that the Administration intends to implement the HBCU Capital Financing Program.

“Nonetheless, UNCF urges the White House to issue an official clarification of its policy to the HBCU community, as the HBCU Capital Financing program has provided tremendous value to HBCUs and the students they serve over the past 25 years.”

They gave examples of how the capital financing program has benefited such schools, allowing Bethune-Cookman University to renovate a student center and provide new student housing, Johnson C. Smith University to build a new science and technology center and so on. The program, they wrote, by statute bases eligibility not on race but on “mission, accreditation status and year the institution was established. Today, 101 HBCUs qualify for this assistance, many of which have a racially diverse student enrollment, faculty and staff.”

For example, they noted, Bluefield State College in West Virginia is designated as an HBCU, but enrolls a population that is 85 percent white and only 9 percent African American.

“The provision in President Trump’s signing statement regarding this critical HBCU program may simply be lawyers at the Office of Management and Budget being overly cautious and perhaps not fully understanding the legal basis for federal HBCU programs,” the UNCF statement continued.

“However, these programs have been thoroughly vetted by the Congress and prior Administrations, and the new Administration must eliminate any doubt as to their Constitutionality. UNCF looks forward to working with the White House and the U.S. Department of Education to continue to communicate the importance of this program and others that positively impact HBCUs and the students they have served for more than 150 years.”

By Cleve R. Wootson Jr. and Susan Svrluga/WashingtonPost

Posted by The NON-Conformist

Despite Some Setbacks, HBCUs Remain a Much-Needed Option for Black Students

As Spelman College celebrates its 136th anniversary today, its legacy reminds us of the role historically Black colleges and universities play in the advancement of African-Americans and why we must preserve their significance in our communities.

Ranked No. 1 among HBCUs by U.S. News & World Report, notable Spelman alumnae include Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist Alice Walker, playwright Pearl Cleage and former Dean of Harvard College Evelynn Hammond. The college ranks in the top 10 of women’s colleges across the country and is the second-largest producer of African-American college graduates who attend medical school.

Though Spelman stands out amongst its peers, the HBCU system has played an integral role in the upward mobility of Black Americans since its establishment following the Civil War. When Jim Crow laws attempted to keep us stuck in the past, they provided safety and opportunity, and what began as a way to keep us “separate but equal” turned into a support system that has since graduated some of our most esteemed leaders. A 2015 Gallup poll also showed that Black graduates of HBCUs fare better than those who went to non-HBCUs across a multitude of categories include financial well-being, purpose and even physical well-being. According to the poll, HBCU graduates felt more supported by their professors and had better opportunities for mentorship. Only 25 percent of Black graduates from other institutions reported that their professors cared about them as people, compared to 58 percent of graduates from HBCUs.

Despite these successes, HBCUs have struggled in recent times. Desegregation, rising incomes and more opportunities for financial aid have provided Black students with more choices, and HBCUs have seen their enrollment numbers stay relatively flat over the past 25 years with small increases in enrollment. The National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) figures show that in fall 2015, the combined total enrollment of all HBCUs was 293,000, compared with 234,000 in 1980. By comparison, enrollment at other universities and colleges nearly doubled during that same time.

Earlier this year, HBCU leaders went to the White House to meet with the Trump administration in hopes of securing additional funding in future years. At first encouraged by his executive order transferring oversight of a federal HBCU initiative from the Department of Education to the White House, they got a reality check not long afterward when the administration released its “America First” budget proposal. The budget cut federal education spending by 13.5 percent, and though it maintained funding for minority institutions and HBCUs at around $492 million, it eliminated the discretionary funding provided by the previous administration. This poses a problem for the 70 percent of HBCU students who rely on federal grants and work-study programs to finance their education.

Though Spelman stands out amongst its peers, the HBCU system has played an integral role in the upward mobility of Black Americans since its establishment following the Civil War. When Jim Crow laws attempted to keep us stuck in the past, they provided safety and opportunity, and what began as a way to keep us “separate but equal” turned into a support system that has since graduated some of our most esteemed leaders. A 2015 Gallup poll also showed that Black graduates of HBCUs fare better than those who went to non-HBCUs across a multitude of categories include financial well-being, purpose and even physical well-being. According to the poll, HBCU graduates felt more supported by their professors and had better opportunities for mentorship. Only 25 percent of Black graduates from other institutions reported that their professors cared about them as people, compared to 58 percent of graduates from HBCUs.

Despite these successes, HBCUs have struggled in recent times. Desegregation, rising incomes and more opportunities for financial aid have provided Black students with more choices, and HBCUs have seen their enrollment numbers stay relatively flat over the past 25 years with small increases in enrollment. The National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) figures show that in fall 2015, the combined total enrollment of all HBCUs was 293,000, compared with 234,000 in 1980. By comparison, enrollment at other universities and colleges nearly doubled during that same time.

Earlier this year, HBCU leaders went to the White House to meet with the Trump administration in hopes of securing additional funding in future years. At first encouraged by his executive order transferring oversight of a federal HBCU initiative from the Department of Education to the White House, they got a reality check not long afterward when the administration released its “America First” budget proposal. The budget cut federal education spending by 13.5 percent, and though it maintained funding for minority institutions and HBCUs at around $492 million, it eliminated the discretionary funding provided by the previous administration. This poses a problem for the 70 percent of HBCU students who rely on federal grants and work-study programs to finance their education.

By Danielle Dorsey/AtlantaBlackStar

Posted by The NON-Conformist

New Initiative Sponsors 100 HBCU Students to Attend SXSW Tech Conference

In a push to get more Black Americans involved in the world of tech, a slew of organizations have teamed up with South by Southwest Conventions and Festivals to help more than 100 African-American students attend the bustling interactive, film and music festival in Austin, Texas, this year.

Thanks to the new HBCU@SXSW initiative, 100 students from historically Black colleges and universities, or HBCUs, were granted the opportunity to take part in one of the largest tech industry events in the country. Last year, the interactive festival attracted over 72,000 of the nation’s brightest thought leaders, investors, future partners and influencers.

While there are millions of African-Americans across the nation who are both interested in and qualified to work in the world of STEM, Blacks and other nonwhite groups remain largely underrepresented in the tech industry. Industry giants like Google, Microsoft and Facebook have taken heat in recent years over their failure to hire a workforce that’s as diverse as its consumer base. Just last year, Google’s very first diversity report showed that 30 percent of its staff was female and a mere 2 percent of its employees were Black.

HBCU@SXSW organizer Rodney Sampson saw the need for increased diversity in the tech world and decided to do something about it by sponsoring the next generation of engineers to mix and mingle with top-tier tech leaders at SXSW 2017. The inventive program was able to fund just 50 students in its first year, but more than 440 went through the onerous application process to be considered for the program this year, USA Today reported.

“We picked the students who wanted to solve the biggest problems using technology and had some pretty good ideas about it,” said Sampson, an Atlanta-based tech entrepreneur. “We’ve really kind of emancipated SXSW to a degree.”

Many of the program’s students were hand-picked from top-notch HBCUs like Morehouse College in Atlanta and D.C.’s Howard University, according to USA Today. Budding engineers also were selected from well-known institutions including New York’s Medgar Evers College, Tuskegee University and Kennesaw State University.

Leading tech companies like Google, Mail Chimp, Snapchat and Apple, among others, soon took notice of HBCU@SXSW and began funding the initiative. Currently, over 30 companies support the pro-diversity program, each putting up the estimated $3,000 it takes to send just one student to the annual festival. HBCU@SXSW hopes to expand its program in the coming years to send as many as 500 budding Black engineers to the popular event.

“Diversity grows out of the soil of inclusion,” said Cheryl Wade, Head of Diversity & Inclusion at Booz Allen Hamilton, which also supports the program. “It starts with making the hires and finding the talent, but there is work to be done on the side of the companies and organizations to be sure they’re building a culture where it creates an environment that people can stick, stay and thrive.”

Rodney Sampson has not responded to requests for comment.

By Tanasia Kenney/AtlantaBlackStar

Posted by The NON-Conformist

HBCUs, advocates looking for help from Trump on funding

The nation’s historically black colleges and universities are pushing for President Donald Trump to set aside more federal contracts and grants for their schools, and take a greater hand in their welfare by moving responsibility for a key program for those colleges to the White House.

President Donald Trump shakes hands as he meets with leaders of Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, Monday, Feb. 27, 2017. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)
Image: AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais

The presidents of the nation’s 100-plus HBCUs, pressing their case for greater attention from the new Republican-controlled government, met with Trump briefly in the Oval Office and later with Vice President Mike Pence. On Tuesday, they planned to meet with GOP lawmakers.

 “Know that beginning today, this administration is committed to ensuring that historically black colleges and universities get the credit and the attention they deserve,” Pence said after the meeting. “Our administration at the president’s direction is working to find new ways to expand your impact so that more students, especially in the underserved communities of this country, have a chance at a quality education.”
More from Seattle Times
Posted by Libergirl

 

What Can Hillary Clinton Or Bernie Sanders Do To Save The Nation’s HBCU’s?

Image: Black America Web.com

Hillary Clinton, the Democratic presidential frontrunner, has promised to revitalize historically black colleges if she is elected to the White House.

“We’re going to work closely with (HBCUs) … because they serve some of America’s brightest students, who need the most support and too often have gotten the least of it,” Clinton wrote in a position paper.

Clinton’s plan for financing education includes a $25 billion fund to support private nonprofit schools that serve low and middle-income students, which includes HBCUs.

According to a September 2014 policy paper from the University of Pennsylvania, about 28,000 HBCU students were unable to cover their tuition costs.

Meanwhile, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) held a packed rally at Morehouse College in Atlanta last month that 5,000 people attended. Sanders is trying hard to court Black voters. He knows Clinton has broad support in the African-American community but he believes he can galvanize young African-Americans and challenge Clinton for the Democratic nomination.

More from Black America Web

Posted by The NON-Conformist

 

Meet Dr. Henry Sampson, Pioneer of Technology now used in Cell Phones

downloadIt was brought to our attention that an article we cited was incorrect. Dr. Sampson is mistakenly credited with creating the cellphone but according to Dr. Sampson …

“Contrary to what you read on the Internet, I had nothing to do with the cell phone,” but was a pioneer in the technology now used in cell phones.

His achievements are still great though…..

Sampson was a pioneer in academia as one of the first African-American chemical engineering graduates. He went on to become the first African-American to earn a PhD in nuclear engineering in the U.S.

From 1956-61, Sampson worked as a research chemical engineer at the U.S. Naval Weapons Center, China Lake, Calif., in high-energy solid propellants and case-bonding materials for solid-rocket motors. “The U.S. Naval Ordinance Test Station was a godsend. When I graduated from Purdue, I found many companies wouldn’t hire an African-American engineer,” he says.

Sampson holds his master’s degree in engineering from UCLA. Following graduate studies, Sampson joined the Aerospace Corp. in El Segundo, Calif., as project engineer (1967-81), then director of planning and operations, Directorate of Space Test Program (1981-87). He led senior engineering staff in every phase from planning to launching and space operation of several satellites. He was a vanguard engineer examining how to power satellites.

On July 6, 1971, Sampson was awarded a patent with George H. Miley for the invention of the gamma-electric cell, a direct-conversion energy device that converts the energy generated from the radiation of high-energy gamma rays into electricity.

Other patents include a binder system for rocket propellants and explosives and a case-bonding system for cast-composite rocket propellants, both related to the manufacturing and production of solid-propellant rocket motors.

More at engineering.purdue.edu

On April 3rd, 1973, Motorola engineer Marty Cooper placed the first public call from a cellphone according to the Verge. In midtown Manhattan, Cooper called Joel Engel — head of rival research department Bell Labs — saying “Joel, this is Marty. I’m calling you from a cell phone, a real handheld portable cell phone.” The call was placed on a Motorola DynaTAC 8000x, which weighed 2.5 pounds, a far cry from today’s 4-ounce handsets. If it wasn’t for Dr. Henry T. Sampson we wouldn’t have cell phone technology today. Isn’t it funny how the mainstream media hasn’t made him a icon based off of his invention? Cellular telephony has spawned a Multi-billion dollar industry and has freed tens of millions of people, both at home and at work, to communicate anywhere, any time. I would of thought he would on the Times and Forbes magazines next to Bill Gate and Steve Jobs for discovering one of the greatest creations of our time.

Henry T. Sampson, the Black man who invented the cell phone On July 6th, 1971, Henry T. Sampson invented the “gamma-electric cell”, which pertains to Nuclear Reactor use. According to Dr. Sampson, the Gamma Electric Cell, patented July 6, 1971, Patent No. 3,591,860 produces stable high-voltage output and current to detect radiation in the ground. Born in Jackson, Mississippi, he received a Bachelor of Science degree from Purdue University in 1956. He went on to the University of California, Los Angeles where he graduated with an MS degree in engineering in 1961; University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, MS in Nuclear Engineering in 1965, and a PHD in 1967. Mobile Communications took a big step forward in 1983 with the invention of the Cellular System regulating the portable telephones, which use radio waves to transmit and receive audio signals. Before this time, mobile telephone service in the United States, consisting mainly of car phones, was extremely limited because metropolitan areas had only one antenna for these purposes. In addition, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) assigned only 12 to 24 frequencies to each area, which meant that only that many calls could occur at a time. These limitations often meant a wait of up to 30 minutes for a dial tone and a five to 10 year waiting list just to acquire the service. With the invention of cellular phone service in 1983, personal communications no longer depended on wires. In the 1990s it would become possible to connect to the Internet from virtually anywhere in the world using a portable computer and a cellular modem with satellite service. Technologies that developed from different fields, such as personal communications, computation, and space exploration often worked together to serve the constantly evolving human needs of the information age. Henry T. Sampson worked as a research Chemical Engineer at the US Naval Weapons Center, China Lake, California. 1956-61. Henry T. Sampson then moved on to the Aerospace Corp, El Segundo, California. His titles include: Project Engineer, 1967-81, director of Planning and Operations Directorate of Space Test Program, 1981-, and Co-inventor of gamma-electric cell. He holds patents related to solid rocket motors and conversion of nuclear energy into electricity. He also pioneered a study of internal ballistics of solid rocket motors using high-speed photography. He was also a producer of documentary films on early black filmmakers and films, a member of the board of directors of Los Angeles Southwest College Foundation, and a technical consultant to Historical Black Colleges and Universities Program. Sampson’s Awards and Honors: Fellow of US Navy, 1962-1964 Atomic Energy Commission, 1964-1967 Black Image Award from Aerospace Corp, 1982 Blacks in Engineering, Applied Science, and Education Award, Los Angeles Council of Black Professional Engineers, 1983

From atlnightspots

Posted by The NON-Conformist