Long-Term Trend in Graduation Rates at Black Colleges Is Generally Good, But There Are Some Major Exceptions

JBHE has collected student graduation rate statistics going back to 1998 for a group of 35 historically black universities. The good news is that during this period 21 of the 35 colleges and universities have seen an improvement in their black student graduation rates. Fourteen black colleges and universities showed a decline in their black graduation rate.

Over the past decade there have been huge increases in graduation rates at some of these HBCUs. For example, at Howard University the black student graduation rate has improved from 47 percent in 1998 to 64 percent in 2009. Other schools showing large improvements in their black student graduation rates are Lincoln University in Missouri and Alcorn State University.

In contrast, the four-year average black graduation rate has declined significantly at Rust College in Holly Springs, Mississippi, Virginia Union University, Shaw University, Lincoln University of Pennsylvania, Grambling State University, Stillman College, and Fayetteville State University.