African-American Student Graduation Rates at Historically Black Colleges and Universities

The graduation rate of African-American students at the nation’s historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) tends to be much lower than the graduation rate for black students at the nation’s highest-ranked institutions. Money is necessary to stay in college. Many of the private HBCUs have puny endowments and therefore are not able to offer adequate financial aid packages.

Nevertheless, the graduation rate at a significant number of HBCUs is well above the nationwide average for black students, which currently stands at an extremely low rate of 44 percent.

By a large margin, the highest black student graduation rate at a historically black college belongs to Spelman, the academically selective, all-women’s college in the city of Atlanta. At Spelman, 78 percent of entering students graduate within six years.

Fisk University in Nashville, Tennessee, has the second-highest graduation rate among the black colleges. At Fisk, 64 percent of the entering black students go on to graduate within six years. Claflin University in South Carolina has a black student graduation rate of 62 percent. Hampton University, Miles College, Howard University, and Morehouse College, sadly, are the only other HBCUs that graduate at least half of their black students within six years.