The U.S. Senate has approved two bills which will help Historically Black Colleges and Universities acquire funding.
The bills are awaiting approval by the House of Representatives and President Donald Trump.
According to the Philadelphia Tribune, The HBCU Propelling Agency Relationships Towards a New Era of Results for Students Act, or HBCU PARTNERS Act, would require federal agencies with relevant grants and programs to expand participation of historically Black colleges and universities, share their plans with Congress, and track their progress toward their goals.
If passed, the HBCU Preservation Program would also be introduced which would reauthorize funding for grants to restore historic buildings and sites on the campuses.
“Partnerships are a high priority under our new strategic plan,” Allen said in an email to The Tribune. “Through a myriad of strategic partnerships, Lincoln works with local, regional, national and international partners to develop property, conduct research, solve community problems and contribute to the cultural life of the community," Lincoln University President Brenda Allen said.
Public universities receive a massive 43 percent of their revenues from federal contracts, grants or appropriations on average compared to HBCUs who only receive 1 percent
“That’s a jarring statistic,” David K. Sheppard, the senior vice president of General Counsel for the Thurgood Marshall College Fund told the Tribune.
“In essence, what the legislation will do is allow our institutions to undertake the capacity building efforts that have been lacking to try to close the divide. “It’s not only simply about our HBCUs surviving, but thriving, legislation like the HBCU PARTNERS Act will set the stage to allow our HBCUs to thrive.”