HBCU Board Commends Bush for Commitment, Leadership

HBCU Board Commends Bush for Commitment, Leadership

The board of advisers of the nation’s historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs) presented President Bush with a resolution commending him for his visionary leadership, and his commitment and contributions to strengthening the nation’s 105 HBCUs. The board also noted that the president’s commitment enhances HBCUs’ ability to continue to produce high-quality graduates to serve the nation and ensures equal opportunity in higher education.
“HBCUs wouldn’t be where they are today, academically or financially, without the continued support of President Bush,” Secretary of Education Rod Paige said. “Not only has he kept his promise of increasing the budget for HBCUs, he has also appointed 20 committed advisory board members to oversee the development and the continued success of HBCUs nationwide.”
The 20 leaders met briefly with President Bush on the occasion of the HBCU board of advisers meeting last month in Washington, where they presented him with their annual report and resolution. Dr. Louis Sullivan, chairman of the HBCU advisory board, expressed his gratitude to President Bush for his support and shared ideas with him on ways to further improve HBCUs this coming year.
The resolution highlighted Bush’s commitment to increase funding by 30 percent by 2005 for HBCUs and historically Black graduate institutions (HBGIs), in recognition of the unique and vital role they play in providing higher education opportunities to minority and disadvantaged students. The 2005 request meets that goal by proposing $240.5 million for HBCUs and $58.5 million for HBGIs.
In addition, the board of advisers thanked President Bush for his appointments of African Americans, many of whom are HBCU graduates, to important positions within the administration. “These appointments speak volumes about the understanding of the diverse needs of the nation as reflected by the president’s commitment to providing positive role models for all of our youth, especially African Americans,” the resolution said.  
Bush’s relationship with HBCUs has been strained at times over the past few years, with some Black college leaders arguing that the funding increases still fall short of their recommendations and others criticizing the administration for its stance on affirmative action.



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