Stingy mofoes! Just kiddin’. 😉 As I get a kick out of catching up with my old college buddies online this past week, I got back to thinking when was the last time I sent a check to Morgan State? If you went to an HBCU, when was the last time you sent a check to your alma mater? I know Tom Joyner has drawn attention to it. A few years back, when the MEAC conference playoffs moved to Raleigh, I began to get more involved with the local alumni chapter. It was then that I was reminded how little we give back to our HBCUs. I think Morgan was even sending letters out sharing how little money they receive from alumni.
Many of the nation’s HBCUs report disturbingly low levels of alumni contributions, a fact that no doubt contributes to the financial strife experienced by so many of these institutions. Strong financial support from alumni builds strong endowments, and swapping 50,000 dollars in loans for 50,000 in scholarship funds during at students’ undergraduate years could mean a return of 4 to 5 times that amount in future donations.
Not surprisingly, it has been those institutions with the strongest endowments and the highest levels of alumni contribution that have taken the lead in eliminating student loan debt, Harvard and Princeton among them. In the end, however, It will be those schools with the lowest levels of alumni contribution and the least secure financial profiles that will gain the most from instituting these enhanced aid programs. A focus on eliminating student debt will transform the opportunities availble to graduates from HBCUs and other institutions that serve economically diverse student populations. (source: http://blackoncampus.com/category/hbcus/)
Money talks. Money builds buildings, improves college ratings, funds students, funds programs. My hubby kicks my ass about it every year and often sends money on my behalf as he sends his annual contribution to his undergraduate school. Honestly, I think my issue is trust. I want to know that my little check is going to land in the right spot. So, I usually give and specify to give the funds directly to a student organization (usually NSBE for me).
So I’m challenging myself and you all to take a minute to write a check to your HBCU this coming week. They got us where we are today, and we should be grateful.