Spelman, Clark Atlanta University and FAMU Among HBCU’s Clearing Tuition Balances



With the coronavirus pandemic changing the course of our lives over the past 18 months, the disruption has taken its toll on just about everyone.

Luckily, despite the negative impact of COVID-19, three HBCUs have recently announced that they have cleared the debts of students covering the 2020-2021 academic year.

Last week, Spelman College announced to its students and on its Facebook page the magnanimous gift.

“To address the financial hardships that have taken a toll on students and families over the last year, Spelman College cleared outstanding student balances from AY 2020-2021, an action made possible by the receipt of funds from the federal government.”

“This reset to the lower tuition rates of four years ago will have a long-term impact on affordability,” said Mary Schmidt Campbell, Ph.D., president of Spelman. “Spelman’s in-depth study into the financial aid needs of our students several years ago reinforced our understanding of one of this country’s fundamental inequities: high performing, high need students are drastically underfunded,” said Campbell.

“If 2020 taught us anything, it is that racial fault lines continue to make the lives of African Americans quantitatively harder than those of non-Black Americans.”

“Clark Atlanta University President Dr. George T. French, Jr. announced today that student account balances for Spring 2020 – Summer 2021 will be canceled and cleared. The university is canceling all student account balances for the Spring 2020, Summer 2020, Fall 2020, Spring 2021, and Summer 2021 semesters by bringing them to a zero balance.

“We understand these past two academic years have been emotionally and financially difficult on students and their families due to the COVID-19 pandemic. That is why we will continue to do all we can to support their efforts to complete their CAU education,” said President French. “Their academic and professional future is important to me and the entire Clark Atlanta University family. We care about students and want to lighten their individual and family’s financial load so they can continue their journey in pursuing and attaining their educational and professional goals.” 

Adding to the recent good news of the other HBCUs, Florida A & M University (FAMU) released a statement announcing the parting gifts of clearing students’ tuition balances:

“Florida A&M University (FAMU) spent more than $16 million to cover fees, tuition, and unpaid student account balances during the 2020-2021 school year, President Larry Robinson, Ph.D., has announced.”

“Over the last year and a half, the University provided over $16 million in student support and debt relief as a result of the federal Cares Act,” Robinson said at the commencement ceremonies for 2020 graduates Saturday morning. “This is an indication of our commitment to student success and our hope that your time on the “Hill” has been transformative as you take on the challenges of the day, go out and make a difference,” Robinson told School of Business & Industry (SBI), College of Pharmacy & Pharmaceutical Sciences, Institute of Public Health (COPPS, IPH) and School of Environment graduates.”





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