Friday, February 10, 2012

Black History: Fisk! My Alma Mater

I have mentioned it before but let me firmly state that I am so proud that I am a product of an HBCU.  Historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) are institutions of higher education in the United States that were established before 1964 with the intention of serving the black community.  There are 105 historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) in the United States today, including public and private, two-year and four-year institutions, medical schools and community colleges. All are or were in the former slave states and territories of the U.S. except for Central State University (Ohio), Cheyney University of Pennsylvania, Lewis College of Business (Detroit, Michigan), Lincoln University (Pennsylvania), Wilberforce University (Ohio), and now-defunct Western University (Kansas). Some closed during the 20th century due to competition, the Great Depression and financial difficulties after operating for decades.

Fisk University is a historically black university founded in 1866 in Nashville, Tennessee to educate newly freed slaves of all ages, Fisk University -- originally known as the Fisk Free Colored School -- would eventually become a premiere liberal arts institution. The school owes it origins to both the hunger of ex-slaves for formal education and the missionary zeal of a group of Northern whites raised in abolitionist families who dedicated themselves to the education of African Americans. At a time when recently freed blacks were establishing makeshift schools all over the South (making do with abandoned buildings and untrained teachers) the opening of Fisk in Nashville was greeted with tremendous excitement. Within the first four months of the school's existence, Fisk enrolled nine hundred students.  The world-famous Fisk Jubilee Singers started as a group of students who performed to earn enough money to save the school at a critical time of financial shortages. They toured to raise funds to build the first building for the education of freedmen. They succeeded and funded construction of the renowned Jubilee Hall, now a designated National Historic Landmark.

·         Fisk University is one of four Historically Black Colleges and Universities to earn a tier one ranking on the list of Best National Liberal Arts Colleges in the 2011 edition of Best Colleges by U.S. News and World Reports. Of the 1,400 institutions ranked nationwide, only 246 institutions earned tier one status.

·         Fisk is on Parade Magazine's "A List" for colleges and universities who offer both a Bachelor's and Master's degree.

·         In 2010, the Washington Monthly ranked Fisk 29th among America's Best Liberal Arts Colleges.

·         According to the Princeton Review, Fisk University is one of America's 373 Best Colleges & Universities.


Kandake CimCiptivan said...

Woo thank you for uplifting the very institutions that got us through time and time again as african americans. I can not stand to see other blacks tear other blacks down by insinuating that they did not go to a REGULAR college or a REAL college. I do not see what about a college being majority white means for us. The knowledge where ever you go is what YOU make of it. I really salute you and I am so proud of you. Keep excelling baby. Galaxy's the limit..not just these earthly skies! You keep going!

Kandake CimCiptivan said...

By the way I live in North Carolina so I am here With great hbcus for example shaw and nccu.

Freckles said...

right on. Thank you so much for the love. I am very much in love with Fisk. It was absolutely the best 4 years of mylife that i would not have been able to have or appreciate anywhere else otherwise. I am very much aware that black college are not for everyone but if we dont go to our schools, the others will. I do share the Black College experience with whomever will listen almost any time I have an opportunity.

thank you for reading.

peace and blessing.

Don said...

Jackson State University, here, and I honestly couldn't see myself attending anything other than an HBCU, at the time. I wanted to attend Morgan State but it didn't pan out as expected.

I've learned something new today. I honestly thought Fisk University was located in New York and had no idea that it resided in Nashville, which is a beautiful city, by the way.

Freckles said...

JSU - right on. I am involved with the Inter-Alumni Council here in Los Angeles which a council of alumni associations of most of our HBCUs which is linked to the UNCF. All of that to say that your alumni out here have a special love for their school. I find it to be true amongst most that attended our prestigous schools. I am fairly certain that I would not be the woman in the making that I am had I attended a non black institution. I originally wanted to go to Shaw and Howard. I got into both but Howard was slow on the financial aid and Shaw just didnt give me enough.

Nashville is beautiful and I would so move back.

Don said...

Yes, me too @ move to Nashville. Very beautiful city.

I love JSU even more as I've gotten older and attended the "coming home" events. I often write for the sports section, til this day.

My daughter refuses to consider a historical black college. Lol. Kids....

Reggie said...

Nice post.

I'm a graduate of yet another HBCU, Alabama State University, in Montgomery.

My parents went to 'Skegee.

Freckles said...

REggie, I should have known you're a product of a HBCU. High Five to you and your parents for instilling the value of the Black College.

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