Howard University

HBCUs See a Spike in Enrollment

A recent study shows that while enrollment at HBCUs is increasing, enrollment at traditional colleges and universities is declining

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While enrollment at traditional universities is seeing a decline, enrollment has spiked at historically black colleges and universities across the country.

Anthony Jones, Howard University’s assistant vice president of enrollment, said this HBCU movement is proving to be successful.

“The world is becoming woke to what we’ve already known for a very long time, and that is that HBCU's have results,” Jones said.

Traditional universities experienced a 2.5% decline in enrollment during the fall 2020 semester, according to the National Student Clearinghouse Research Center. 

But Bowie State University, Maryland’s first HBCU, has its second-highest enrollment in history. Bowie State Enrollment Manager Brian Clemmons said HBCUs can credit marketing and family history to its increase.


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“It's really resonating with families right now, particularly in this pandemic, is that we are not only affordable but it’s worth the investment,” Clemmons said.

Clemmons also said the legacy of HBCU alumni has a great impact on the generations to come. 

Howard University is seeing a 7% increase in undergraduate enrollment and twice that in graduate enrollment. Jones said the political climate is a contributor to this increase.

“We can't ignore the fact that we are blessed in the HBCU community to have some very high-profile individuals who are out there right now,” Jones said. “Our own vice president of the United States, Kamala Harris, being one of those.”

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