Historically black colleges and universities (HBCU) are higher education institutions in the United States that were established before the Civil Rights Act of 1964 with the intention of primarily serving the African American community. This was necessary because during the period of segregation in the United States prior to the Civil Rights Act, the overwhelming majority of predominantly white institutions of higher education disqualified African Americans from enrollment. Through the 1960s and 1970s, a century since de facto end of slavery in the United States, a majority of colleges and universities in the Southern United States prohibited all African Americans from attending, while institutions in other parts of the country regularly employed quotas to limit admissions of blacks.
During the 1930s, there were 121 HBCU institutions that existed in the United States, including both public and private institutions. Today, 101 of the HBCUs are still standing. Of these remaining HBCU institutions, 27 of them offer doctoral programs, 52 schools offer master’s programs, 83 colleges offer bachelor’s degree programs and 38 schools offer associate degrees.
HBCUs offer all students, regardless of race, an opportunity to develop their skills and talents. These institutions train young people who go on to serve domestically and internationally in the professions as entrepreneurs and in the public and private sectors.
HBCUs are well-known for making college accessible for low-income students. Although so, you can benefit from HBCU scholarships and grants to cut the cost of your degree. Here are some of the many HBCU scholarships and grants that you can and may be eligible to apply for.
TMCF – Coca-Cola Foundation First-Generation HBCU Scholarships
Thurgood Marshall College Fund (TMCF) awards nearly 500 scholarships a year to high-achieving students. TMCF has partnered with the Coca-Cola Foundation to offer financial assistance through the TMCF – Coca-Cola Foundation First-Generation HBCU Scholarship program. These scholarships are offered to outstanding first-year students attending one of the seven pre-selected publicly-supported Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) and Predominantly Black Institutions (PBIs) within the TMCF 47 member-school network, in the United States.
Six selected scholars will receive a four-year scholarship up to $5,000 per year. The scholarship will be used to cover the costs of tuition fees, on-campus room and board, and required textbooks purchased from the member-schools. The scholarship will be disbursed in the fall and spring semesters at $2,500 per semester.
To be eligible for the TMCF – Coca-Cola Foundation First-Generation HBCU scholarships, applicants must:
- Be a first-generation college student
- Be a graduating high school senior
- Be accepted and enrolled as a full-time incoming-freshmen student at one of TMCF’s 47 member-schools listed below (only):
- Alabama State University
- Albany State University
- Norfolk State University
- North Carolina Central University
- Prairie View A&M University
- Savannah State University
- Tuskegee University
- Have a high school grade point average of 2.5 or higher
- Be recommended by a high school counselor
- Demonstrate outstanding financial need
- Demonstrated leadership ability through a variety of measures
- Be a U.S. citizen or legal permanent resident with a valid permanent resident card
Applicants must submit the following documents for consideration:
- Student Aid Report (received from filing FAFSA)
- Most recent high school transcript (unofficial or official)
- Recommendation letter from your high school counselor (must be completed online by the recommender)
- Essay question: What would it mean to you and your community to be the first person in your family to earn a college degree?
To apply for the scholarship, create or log in to your TMCF Account. Once you have signed up or logged in, you can complete the TMCF – Coca-Cola Foundation First-Generation HBCU Scholarships application.
Visit the website for more information.
HBCU Council Scholarships
The HBCU Council of Shiloh Baptist Church (WDC) has been serving the Greater DMV for 15 years. Delivering scholarships, workshops for parents and guardians, free practice college entrance tests for students, school supply drives for elementary schools and sharing the significance of HBCUs in the United States.
Founded in 2003, the HBCU Council of Shiloh Baptist Church was formed to raise awareness regarding Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) and to provide the HBCU access to generations of new students. The HBCU Council is based in Washington D.C. with members and sister entitles nationwide. The HBCU Council provide community education and access to college, scholarships, SAT and college board test preparation and a host of celebratory HBCU services. The HBCU Council also hosts concerts and social events, for the purposes of raising money to support the HBCUs.
There is a variety of HBCU scholarships offered by the HBCU Council. These scholarship programs include:
- Dr. Wallace Charles Smith HBCU Scholarship Award: HBCU scholarships for incoming freshmen students with a minimum grade point average of 3.5. each scholarship is worth $2,000. A one-page essay is required for the scholarship application.
- Carolyn M. Harris HBCU Scholarship Award: HBCU scholarships worth $1,000 each, for incoming freshmen at an HBCU. To be eligible to this scholarship, applicants must hold a grade point average of 2.5 and be a member of a musical ensemble (school chorus, church / youth choir instrumental ensemble, etc.), have declared major in music education (vocal / instrumental) performance or applied, submit a letter of recommendation from the applicant’s current music teacher / mentor and a one-page essay.
- HBCU Heritage Scholarship Award: HBCU scholarships for incoming freshmen with a minimum grade point average of 2.5. Applicants must submit a one-page essay and demonstrate a need for financial assistance.
- Michael Amos HBCU Scholarship Award: One iPad awarded to an incoming freshman or continuing college student at an HBCU, with a minimum grade point average of 3.0. Applicant must declare major in engineering or architecture and submit a one-page essay.
- Evelyn Hider A&B HBCU Scholarship Awards: Two HBCU scholarships worth $1,000 each, for incoming freshmen at an HBCU. Applicants must hold a minimum grade point average of 2.5 and submit a one-page essay.
- Evelyn Hider Continuing Education HBCU Scholarship Award: HBCU scholarships for juniors and seniors at an HBCU. Applicants must hold a minimum grade point average of 3.0, submit a one-page essay, and be a prior recipient of an HBCU Council award.
The eligibility criteria for all HBCU Council Scholarships awards are:
- Must be a resident of Washington D.C., Maryland or Northern Virginia
- Must be a member of a church or community based organization
- Must have completed community service hours (minimum of 40 hours)
- Submit two letters of recommendation (teacher / counselor, pastor / church official, community organization)
- Submit official school transcript
- Where required, demonstrate financial need of assistance via essay and documentation.
For questions, email email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org (HBCU Council Scholarship Committee), if questions are regarded to the HBCU scholarships. Visit the HBCU Council Scholarships website for further details.
Delta Community Credit Union HBCU Scholarship
Delta Community Credit Union is committed to improving the financial lives of its members. Programs like the HBCU Scholarships and the annual Delta Community Scholarship were created to help members with early financial milestones like going to college.
In 2019, Delta Community will award $10,000 in scholarships to select students of Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs). Scholarships will be awarded in February, May, September and December 2019. Each quarter, a scholarship for $2,500 will be awarded to one student.
Eligible students that are encouraged to apply for HBCU scholarships 2019-2020 are:
- Current undergraduate students at any of Georgia’s Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs)
- Graduating high school seniors who have received an official acceptance letter to a Georgia HBCU
Delta Community Credit Union will select one winner each quarter from among the most compelling submissions. Winners will be chosen after the contest period ends. Winners will be contacted by a representative from Delta Community and announced by Radio One on-air within 7 days after each contest period.
For more information, visit the Delta Community Credit Union HBCU Scholarship website.
NCLBC Foundation Scholarship
The North Carolina Legislative Black Caucus Foundation, Inc. (NCLBC Foundation), is a 501©(3) nonprofit organization founded in 1986 for the purpose of supporting African American college students through educational programs, scholarships and internships. The Foundation receives and administers funds exclusively for educational purposes. These funds are used to advance opportunities for African American students attending Historically Black Colleges and Universities.
The NCLBC Foundation was established by the North Carolina Legislative Black Caucus. The Caucus was formally organized in the early 80’s to promote legislative policies and actions responsive to all North Carolinians, especially African Americans. The Caucus saw the need for programs for African American youth and as a result, the NCLBC Foundation was formed.
The NCLBC Foundation provides need-based scholarships to eligible North Carolina students enrolled and in good standing at one of the 10 Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) in North Carolina. These public and private HBCU institutions are:
- Bennett College (Greensboro, NC)
- Elizabeth City State University (Elizabeth City, NC)
- Fayetteville State University (Fayetteville, NC)
- Johnson C. Smith University (Charlotte, NC)
- Livingstone College (Salisbury, NC)
- North Carolina A&T State University (Greensboro, NC)
- North Carolina Central University (Durham, NC)
- Saint Augustine’s University (Raleigh, NC)
- Shaw University (Raleigh, NC)
- Winston-Salem State University (Winston-Salem, NC)
Students that are considered as eligible to apply for this HBCU scholarships program are high school seniors, freshmen, sophomores or juniors with at least a 3.0 grade point average. Relatives of North Carolina legislators and Foundation board members are not eligible to receive NCLBCF scholarships.
Students interested in a scholarship should apply directly to their school’s Financial Aid Office by August 31st for Fall Semester or January 31st for Spring Semester. Awards are made directly through the participating college or university and students will receive written notification.
Applications are available at https://nclbcf.org/how-to-apply. For more information about the NCLBC Foundation HBCU Scholarships, visit the Scholarship Information page on NCLBCF’s website (https://nclbcf.org).