Black Colleges See a Need to Improve Their Image

Historically Black Colleges See an Urgent Need to Improve Their Image 1

Lissa Gotwals for The Chronicle

Experts in the education of minority students -- including (standing, from left) Everett Ward, director of the North Carolina Department of Transportation's Historically Black Colleges and University and Minority Serving Institutes program; Willie J. Gilchrist, chancellor of Elizabeth City State U., and Jimmy R. Jenkins Sr., president of Livingstone College -- discussed the urgent need to improve the quality of historically black colleges at the HBCU Symposium in Durham, N.C.

Enlarge Image
close Historically Black Colleges See an Urgent Need to Improve Their Image 1

Lissa Gotwals for The Chronicle

Experts in the education of minority students -- including (standing, from left) Everett Ward, director of the North Carolina Department of Transportation's Historically Black Colleges and University and Minority Serving Institutes program; Willie J. Gilchrist, chancellor of Elizabeth City State U., and Jimmy R. Jenkins Sr., president of Livingstone College -- discussed the urgent need to improve the quality of historically black colleges at the HBCU Symposium in Durham, N.C.

The nation's historically black colleges are being challenged from within to overhaul their operations and image as they face outside pressures for more accountability.

Once the only higher-education option for black students, historically black colleges now enroll just 12 percent of black students, although they award 30 percent of the baccalaureate degrees earned by all black students. While a handful of the 105 colleges maintain a strong national reputation, many have long