A Comparative Analysis: The Pioneer HBCU vs. the Modern HBCU

Jasmyn L. Turner


Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBUUs) are defined as colleges for the minority students to gain a higher education. They were once defined as a special place for freed slaves to receive an education that was not offered anywhere else. These two definitions show the major transformation in the purpose of HBCU. The first HBCU was founded in 1837. During these times, Blacks simply needed a place to further their education, for the most part, or learn a trade. HBCUs began to vary in what they taught and Blacks had an option to continue with a trade or to pursue a dream of something more reputable. Currently, many HBCUs are known for their rich legacy, the curriculum, as well as their bands. The Interaction Theory views age-related change. The results are based on changes and different circumstances in society. HBCUs have changed dramatically over time based on the changes in society. This paper hypothesizes that if the HBCU has in fact changed over time, then not for the better or for the worst, but simply changed with the evolving of society. The hypothesis also includes the fact that there is still a necessity for HBCUs. Using the qualitative method, the research analyzes the data collected from primary and secondary sources. These sources were collected by using the document analysis technique as well as expert interviews. By researching the history and impact of HBCUs when they were first established as well as what they offer now, the study distinguishes the major changes and the need for these institutions then and now. The findings after the data analysis show that HBCUs are still needed today, possibly not for the same reasons as in the 1800s; but without these institutions, the world would function differently.


Historically Black Colleges and Universities, Higher Education, African Americans

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