Historically Black colleges and universities students in Maryland claim their universities are treated like they have 3/5’s of the value of predominately white institutions because of the lackluster federal funding HBCUs have received over the years.
Students from Coppin State, Bowie State University, the University of Maryland Eastern Shore and Morgan State University came together outside of a federal courthouse to bring awareness about the inequality they face. In a Tuesday, Feb. 21, rally following hearings, students demanded that the state give HBCUs more funding to fix and repair outdated facilities.
“We stopped being 3/5’s human and it’s time that our institutions stop being 3/5’s of a university,” Bowie State University student Phylecia Faublas says.
There has been a decade-long legal fight between the state and HBCUS over funding, according to CBS Baltimore. Students have been outraged over a state policy that allows other universities to duplicate their specialty programs, which increases the amount of funding the colleges receive. They say that the duplication of specialty programs puts HBCUs at a disadvantage.
“You don’t see McDonald’s operating and establishing two McDonald’s on the same block,” DeJuan Patterson says at a rally on Tuesday.
“The unnecessary duplication of the programs takes away from our population,” alumni Morgan State University alumni Joshua Harris says.
In 2013, a federal judge agreed that the state’s policy was harmful but there were no solutions to address the issue, CBS Baltimore reported.
“We work very, very hard at our institutions to get an education and we believe that we should get the quality educations with the quality programs and the quality funding,” HBCU student Chinedu Nwokeafor tells the outlet.