President Donald Trump met with dozens of educators and officials from historically black colleges and universities in the White House on Monday. The meeting came just days after he pledged to help the institutions of higher learning that are collectively and more commonly known as HBCUs.
That help was likely to come in the form of an executive order, according to Politico.
Trump singled out HBCUs during his weekly address Saturday. "I also want to honor and promote the achievements of Historically Black Colleges and Universities throughout our Nation. They do a fantastic job," the president said. "They are not given the credit that they deserve, and they are going to start getting that credit."
That portion of Trump's weekly address could be an earnest attempt to endear himself to black people, of which 8 percent of the demographic's voters cast ballots for the president on Election Day. His pledge to HBCUs, however, could also be a thinly veiled jab at his predecessor, President Barack Obama, who was widely perceived to have not done enough for black colleges during eight years in Washington.
While Trump has made some questionable comments directed at the black community, some HBCU administrators have said they recognized the efforts he was making to ingratiate himself to African-Americans' educational endeavors. After winning the election, Trump was routinely involved in "listening sessions and sales pitches for the incoming administration to heavily invest in," McClatchy reported in December. Shortly after that, the then-incoming Trump administration invited the marching band from Talladega College, an HBCU in Alabama, to perform at the inauguration. The band accepted, setting off a firestorm over Talladega's perceived support of a candidate who was openly backed by the Ku Klux Klan and white nationalists. In comparison, Howard University declined the same offer.
Which not immediately being designates as HBCUs, the first black colleges were created in part as a byproduct of slavery, which in many cases didn't allow for the formal education of black people in the U.S. Cheyney University of Pennsylvania was the first ever HBCU, having been founded in 1837.
There are 80 HBCUs across the country, but just a small handful of them had national name recognition. Among them were Howard University in Washington, D.C., Spelman College in Atlanta and Hampton University in southeastern Virginia. However, many others have rich academic traditions, as well. A full list of historically black colleges and universities follows below.
Alabama Agricultural and Mechanical University
Alabama State University
Albany State University
Alcorn State University
Arkansas Baptist College
Bluefield State College
Bowie State University
Central State University
Cheyney University of Pennsylvania
Clark Atlanta University
Coppin State University
Delaware State University
Edward Waters College
Elizabeth City State University
Fayetteville State University
Florida A&M University
Florida Memorial University
Fort Valley State University
Grambling State University
Harris-Stowe State University
Jackson State University
Jarvis Christian College
Johnson C. Smith University
Kentucky State University
Mississippi Valley State University
Morgan State University
Norfolk State University
North Carolina A&T State University
North Carolina Central University
Philander Smith College
Prairie View A&M University
Savannah State University
South Carolina State University
Southern University and A&M College
Southern University--New Orleans
Southwestern Christian College
St. Augustine's University
Tennessee State University
Texas Southern University
University of Arkansas--Pine Bluff
University of Maryland--Eastern Shore
University of the District of Columbia
Virginia State University
Virginia Union University
West Virginia State University
Winston-Salem State University
Xavier University of Louisiana
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