A few days ago, I wrote the post ‘Trump puts ‘America Last’ by eliminating affirmative action’ where I made a small Cheyney University mention…

As for the black and hispanic student, imagine the day when the average 12th grader could name at least 5 HBCUs of the nearly 100 in existence today. Imagine if the quality of eduction at 25 of those small schools would be on par with today’s top universities. Unfortunately, we have to watch a Cheyney University sitting right in our back yard go on life support before our eyes because they can’t attract students.

The next day, the Philadelphia Inquirer wrote an editorial on Cheyney where we learned…

Virtually every one of the nation’s 104 historically black colleges and universities has had financial problems in the past decade. They hope to avoid the fates of Western University (Kansas), founded in 1865; Bishop College (Texas), 1881; St. Paul College (Virginia), 1888; and Daniel Payne College (Alabama), 1889, which closed after years of struggling to escape financial disaster.

As I mentioned in my piece, more of the remaining HBCUs have to get on par with top universities in order to have a chance to survive. The Inquirer says it like this…

To survive, Cheyney must be able to compete for students of any ethnicity. For example, Tuskegee University (Alabama), founded in 1881, attracts students to its college of veterinary medicine. It also is the nation’s top producer of African American aerospace science engineers.

And then there’s Meharry Medical College which includes its School of Medicine and School of Dentistry and puts out a ton of black doctors and dentist. And if you want to fly a plane, a lot of HBCUs offer aviation degrees like Delaware State, Hampton, and Norfolk State, the 3 schools nearest to here.

For Cheyney, the bottom line as described by the Inquirer is this…

…with enrollment dropping 53 percent in six years to 750 students, Cheyney must change dramatically or face extinction.

I heard rumors over a year ago that West Chester University is waiting in the wings for Cheyney to fail so they can have a chance to swoop in and steal the Cheyney campus and expand the programs at West Chester.

Interestingly, a person wrote a response to the Inquirer’s Cheyney editorial a couple days later saying this…

The root of Cheyney University’s problems, and the answer to those problems, lies with the African American community itself. More than 1,300 African American students attend West Chester University, in contrast to the 750 students at Cheyney. That means 1,300 black students have eschewed attendance at a historically black college to attend a state college that is 80 percent white and six miles away. That is Cheyney’s problem.

Drop the Mic!