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U.S. SENATE PASSES BILL WITH HBCU FUNDING

WASHINGTON, DC (December 5, 2019) – The Thurgood Marshall College Fund (TMCF) applauds Senate Health Education Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee Chairman Lamar Alexander (R-TN), Senate HELP Committee Ranking Member Patty Murray (D-WA), Senator Doug Jones (D-AL), Senator Tim Scott (R-SC), Senator Richard Burr (R-NC) and Senator Chris Coons (D-DE) for proposing meaningful amendments to and moving quickly to pass the FUTURE Act with a 10-year extension of mandatory funding for Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs), Predominantly Black Institutions (PBIs) and other Minority Serving Institutions (MSIs) under Title III, Part F of the Higher Education Act of 1965, which previously expired on September 30, 2019. 

“I thank Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) for making HBCU, PBI and other MSI funding a Congressional priority and carving a path for the long-term extension of these critical funds,” said Harry L. Williams, TMCF president & CEO. “TMCF is appreciative of all of the Senators who came together, in a bipartisan way, to reaffirm the importance of and work to renew this material investment in our Nation’s post-secondary students.”

Dr. Austin A. Lane, president of Texas Southern University said, “The bipartisan support of this bill is clear validation of the value that HBCUs like Texas Southern University brings to so many first-generation college students. Thanks to the lawmakers involved, as well as the tireless support from Dr. Harry Williams and the TMCF, the passage of this bill, will help thousands of more students reach their goals – and without the financial barriers that so often get in the way.”

This critical stream of mandatory funding (Title III, Part F), if passed by the U.S. House of Representatives and signed by President Trump, will continue to help eligible colleges and universities enhance their fiscal stability, improve their institutional management, and strengthen their academic programming, particularly within high-demand career areas, like careers in STEM disciplines. 

“Title III, Part F funds are of critical importance to Historically Black Colleges and Universities and Minority-Serving Institutions, thus having a 10-year extension pass the Senate is appropriate and timely,” said Dr. M. Christopher Brown II, president of Kentucky State University.  “This outcome is a win for our campus, the students we serve, and the hundreds of thousands of other students across the nation. The bipartisan amendment to the FUTURE Act is the result of tremendous community-wide advocacy and engagement. Kentucky State University stands united in urging the House of Representatives to quickly pass and the President to sign this bill so that our schools can continue to focus on developing the leaders of tomorrow.”

“I know I speak for a great many other chancellors and presidents around the country when I say I am tremendously encouraged by the Senate’s action on the FUTURE Act supporting Title III, Part F, of the Higher Education Act. The restoration of funding in this critical section of Title III for 10 years will positively impact the lives of hundreds of thousands of students and enhance the financial picture for all institutions assisted by Title III,” said North Carolina A&T Chancellor Harold L. Martin Sr. “I am especially thankful for the leadership of the Thurgood Marshall College Fund in advocating for this measure and for the leadership of North Carolina Senators Richard Burr and Thom Tillis in voting for the bill. We now look to the House with the hope that bipartisan agreement can be found in support of this important measure.”

Having achieved passage of this landmark legislation in the U.S.Senate, TMCF urges the U.S. House of Representatives to move swiftly to demonstrate their unwavering support for our nation’s HBCUs, PBIs, and other MSIs, and the students they serve, by passing this legislation and sending the FUTURE Act to the White House for President Trump’s signature.  

BY: TMCF