The debate between Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) versus Predominantly White Institutions (PWIs) is one of the most commonly discussed debates today. Most black families will persuade their kids to attend HBCUs because they think that they would be in a more comfortable environment. However, what people fail to realize is that PWIs have way more to offer financially, culturally and educationally. They deserve more credit from the black community than what they are given.
Diversity is a major component of PWIs that HBCUs seem to be lacking in. According to Stanford University in Stanford, California was deemed the most diverse school as of September 1, 2016. Diversity is an extremely important part when considering colleges. Going to school with people of different races and ethnicities assist the student in experiencing communication with different types of people. The development of communication skills increases because students will have to be with people from an entirely different environment, opening up student’s minds to different cultures, customs and lifestyles. In addition, our ancestors fought for the right to integrate schools so that black students would be able to go to college with white kids. Now that we have that privilege, why waste it in only choosing to go to HBCUs?
Another key benefit of attending a PWI is that they receive more funding than HBCUs. According to Jajuan Morris, journalist, states that the funding that HBCUs receive are “very limited and sub par.” He also states that they receive less financial endowment than their counterparts. With this in mind, since PWIs receive more funding, they are able to increase their scholarship load which is another reason why black college students say they chose a PWI over an HBCU. Having better funding also equates to having better classrooms, high quality teachers and better overall facilities.
Believe it or not, going to a PWI provides black college students with confidence and prepares them to work in the real world. According to Deja Jones, PWI alumnus, stated that she felt more pride while attending a PWI. Since black college students will be surrounded by unfamiliar people, they are forced to really think about who they are and what they want to do in life. They have an opportunity to join various clubs that may not be offered if attending an HBCU. Clubs are diversified to accommodate all types of student life on the campus and provide students with a wider range when deciding what they want to participate in during their college life. When students unify on campus, especially at a PWI, they are more likely to get the attention of the student body than those at an HBCU. The reason being, most of the students at an HBCU are black so when they try to talk to the student body there will not be much of an impact because the majority of them are of the same background. When at a PWI, students have all different types of backgrounds which will make them want to listen to new opinions and voices.
Thus, a PWI is the better choice to make over an HBCU. They provide students with the cultural experience they need to be able to enter the workforce with different people, they receive more scholarship funding and higher quality learning centers and they are able to truly discover themselves in a midst of people who have entirely different backgrounds and lifestyles.