The Black College Fund Leads the Way
One of the most significant ways The United Methodist Church helps make quality education accessible to all is through the Black College Fund (BCF). The fund supports the 11 historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) related to the church — the largest number of black colleges and universities receiving funding from any church body in the United States.
These 11 institutions play an indispensable role in shaping diverse young leaders for the church and the world. UM-related black colleges and universities offer a chance to everyone with a dream and a commitment to excel – regardless of race, class, gender or ethnic heritage. They also extend important educational opportunities to countless underserved and first-generation college students who might not be able to pursue a degree otherwise, despite their talents, skills and passions.
A Legacy of Leadership
The UM-related black colleges and universities, far beyond proportion to their numbers and financial resources, are responsible for educating some of the world’s most effective and recognized leaders. That impressive cadre includes preachers, district superintendents, bishops, college professors and presidents, general agency staff, legislators and community leaders.
Among the well-known graduates of these 11 schools are Dr. Joycelyn Elders, a 1952 graduate of Philander Smith College and the first African American and the second woman to serve as the U.S. surgeon general, and James L. Farmer Jr., a 1938 Wiley College graduate and civil rights leader who helped found the Congress of Racial Equality (CORE).
These schools and their graduates have a rich legacy of service and are a source of great pride in their communities.
Supporting the Black College Fund
On average, United Methodist congregations provide between 87 percent and 89 percent of the funds apportioned for the Black College Fund. In 2012, United Methodists gave $9.4 million, which met 89.8 percent of the apportioned amount. For the benefit of the schools’ students and their contributions to the world, we encourage the church to support the fund at 100 percent. Urge your church to give faithfully to the Black College Fund, or contact the fund at firstname.lastname@example.org to inquire about individual donations.
When your congregation supports the Black College Fund, it can be confident that its gifts will provide vital support to students. More than 95 percent of all proceeds of the fund flow directly to HBCU campuses, where they help to strengthen programs, provide vital infrastructure and keep tuition costs low. In doing so, the fund ensures that these schools are accessible even by students from households with modest incomes. These colleges are and always have been open to all.