Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senators Joe Manchin (D-WV) and Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV), today announced the Senate passage of their legislation to permanently renew funding for Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) and minority-serving institutions (MSIs). The legislation also includes a first step toward simplifying the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) process. Annual funding for MSIs expired on September 30, 2019.
“Minority-serving institutions serve a significant role in America’s history and have educated some of our country’s greatest thinkers. They continue to positively influence our nation by creating learning and growing opportunities through innovative research and world-class academics. I am proud to have worked with my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to permanently fund these institutions and ensure they continue to provide top-notch education for years to come,” said Senator Manchin.
“West Virginia is proud to be home to two HBCU’s, West Virginia State University and Bluefield State College,” Senator Capito said. “I’ve had the chance to see firsthand the life-changing impact of these institutions of higher education can have on someone’s life. It’s with particular passion that I’ve continued working with my colleagues to make sure every child and every student has access to an excellent education. This bipartisan and permanent fix will have a lasting impact on our students, and it will ensure HBCU’s have access to the federal support needed to help their students achieve their goals.”
“Without question, Title III, Part-F funding is of material importance to Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs),” said Harry L. Williams, President & CEO of the Thurgood Marshall College Fund (TMCF). “This bi-partisan agreement to renew Title III, Part-F, assuming that the legislation is subsequently passed by the House of Representatives and signed into law by President Trump, means that Alabama’s HBCUs will not suffer the loss of over $8 million in annual federal funding that is used to support these institutions’ respective missions; a result that is both consequential for our schools and, more importantly, their deserving students. TMCF greatly appreciates the leadership Senator Jones has taken throughout this process and for being a committed partner in ensuring that this critically-important, mandatory funding for HBCUs was not lost to history.”
“We have yet another reason to be thankful this season,” said Dr. Michael L. Lomax, president and CEO of UNCF. “We thank the thousands of HBCU advocates who took action through our digital campaign as well as Senators Doug Jones and Tim Scott, who are always essential in our work and who joined so many to speak up when HBCUs needed them most. Senators Lamar Alexander and Patty Murray also now have another in a long list of bipartisan compromises and joint effort for which they can take credit. This permanent funding solution, which would stave off unnecessary cuts for our institutions, will allow HBCUs to continue fostering innovation and inspiring future leaders in the STEM disciplines—and that helps our nation.”
“In a rare showing of bipartisanship in the 116th Congress that has been hamstrung by bitter partisanship, Senator Jones and his colleagues Senators Alexander, Murray and others, who recognize the centrality of HBCUs and MSIs to the security, strength, peace, progress, excellence, inclusivity, and global standing of America, led the Senate to act on their understanding of the Nation’s tremendous loss if these equal educational opportunity institutions are not strong and do not realize their full potential,” said Lezli Baskerville, President of the National Association for Equal Opportunity in Higher Education (NAFEO).