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Community Advocacy Organization

Black College being Punished for its Popularity

North Carolina A&T University is having nearly two million dollars in funding stripped away in a move that some say equates to the state punishing the Historically Black school (HBCU) for its success at attracting students.

The funding move stems from the rules governing funding of state universities in North Carolina that are designed to ensure that in-state students aren’t shut out of a competitive admissions process. The rules call for limits on the percentage of out-of-state students in each class and were mostly intended for larger schools in the North Carolina system, such as UNC Chapel Hill, which has nearly 25,000 students.

North Carolina A&T has about half that, with just over 13,000 students, about 11,000 of them full-time. But lately, the campus has seen an influx of interest and applications, part of a wave of renewed interest in HBCUs broadly. This resulted in the current freshman class going over its limit for out-of-state students—by 171 enrollees.

That triggered the University of North Carolina System’s Board of Governors to vote to decrease funding for NC A&T in the current fiscal year by $1,976,546.

Board member Joel Ford of Charlotte dissented from the majority, saying, “I cannot support this particular item punishing (A&T) for being successful. We have out-of-state students who want to attend one of our institutions because of its history and because of its ability to make good and deliver on a promise to provide a high-quality education.”

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