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HBCU Missing in Albany State's Mission Statement

March 14, 2016

When the University System of Georgia in November announced plans to merge Albany State University and nearby Darton State College, officials said that the combined institution would preserve Albany State's mission as a historically black institution.

But when a new mission statement was released last week, it contained no mention of the historically black mission. And the lack of that mention led several hundred students -- many of them dressed in black -- to protest at Albany State, The Albany Herald reported. Curtis Fluker, a senior, said, "It’s not 1965 anymore; it’s time to live in color. We really don’t care who comes to school here as long as we can protect the school’s legacy. This is not about the name of the school, but the new mission statement. Nothing is given to you at an HBCU, you have to earn it."

The HBCU Roundtable, which advocates for historically black colleges, posted the photo at right.

Art Dunning, president of Albany State, said more documents on the consolidation plan would provide places to include the historically black university mission.

Officials of the university system did not respond to an email from Inside Higher Ed asking why the historically black mission was not included in last week's document.

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Scott Jaschik

Scott Jaschik, Editor, is one of the three founders of Inside Higher Ed. With Doug Lederman, he leads the editorial operations of Inside Higher Ed, overseeing news content, opinion pieces, career advice, blogs and other features. Scott is a leading voice on higher education issues, quoted regularly in publications nationwide, and publishing articles on colleges in publications such as The New York Times, The Boston Globe, The Washington Post, Salon, and elsewhere. He has been a judge or screener for the National Magazine Awards, the Online Journalism Awards, the Folio Editorial Excellence Awards, and the Education Writers Association Awards. Scott served as a mentor in the community college fellowship program of the Hechinger Institute on Education and the Media, of Teachers College, Columbia University. He is a member of the board of the Education Writers Association. From 1999-2003, Scott was editor of The Chronicle of Higher Education. Scott grew up in Rochester, N.Y., and graduated from Cornell University in 1985. He lives in Washington.

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