By Zenitha Prince
Trice Edney News Wire
Despite their ongoing struggles, HBCU’s are doing a better job than other institutions of producing Black alumni who are thriving, particularly in their financial well-being and career purpose, according to recent results of an ongoing Gallup study.
That is “positive news” for the nation’s embattled HBCUs, Brandon Busteed, executive director of Gallup Education and Workforce Development, told Inside Higher Ed.
“There are still noticeable challenges around completion rates and loan default rates, and this data doesn’t change that,” Busteed said. “But this data does add a whole new dimension to the conversation about the value of HBCUs. Black students are having very meaningful experiences at HBCUs, compared to Black graduates from everywhere else.”
The findings were published in the new “Gallup-USA Funds Minority College Graduates Report.” The study is the result of an ongoing Gallup-Purdue University survey that has collected data from more than 55,000 college graduates. The study seeks to ascertain what colleges are doing to effect the future social, financial, purpose, community and physical well-being of their graduates.
Fifty-five percent of Black HBCU graduates were more likely to “strongly agree” that their colleges prepared them for life after graduation compared to 29 percent of Black graduates of other institutions. That assessment seemed to correlate with experiences such as having a professor who cared about them as a person, a professor who made them excited about learning and a mentor who encouraged them to pursue their goals and dreams.
Black graduates of HBCUs were also more likely to report involvement in applied internships, long-term projects and extracurricular activities.