Another important HBCU is on the brink of financial ruin

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wilberforceApril V. Taylor

The Root is reporting that the country’s oldest black private university, Wilberforce University in Ohio, is in jeopardy of closing.  The HBCU was founded in 1856 and was the first college to be owned and operated by African Americans.  W.E.B. DuBois taught at the school at one point.  The college has survived a myriad of issues, including the Civil War and arson, to educate generations of black leaders, teachers, ministers, doctors, and politicians.

The school is now facing plummeting enrollment, a shocking and debilitating financial deficit of $9.7 million, and to make matters even worse, the school is in danger of losing its accreditation.  Alumni from the school are attempting to rescue the beloved HBCU by raising $3 million in cash donations.  The group has currently received $400,000 in promised donations from alumni and an additional $200,000 in pledges.

The school is attempting to change its structure in an effort to return the institution to a more functional state.  This includes making changes to the board of directors, renovating facilities, changing academic curriculum, and finding a president who has a vision that will help the school move forward in its restructuring effort.

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