African American

Historicall Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) are insitutions of higher education in the United States that were established before 1964 with the intention to primarily serve the African American community. 

It is back to school time and the African American Galley showcases this new exhibit from 2-4 p.m. Sunday September 18th. Enjoy the program at 3 p.m. featuring Tiana McCall (Cooper) an educational enthusiast and community energizer. She will discuss field trip opportunities for local students to visit some of the HBCU campuses.The exhibit will enlighten high school age students and their parents to some of the benefits of attending HBCUs. In addition it spotlights some of Rockford residents who have attended a HBCU. Also included in the exhibit is archival information and photos of Rockfordians who attended the recognized Tuskegee University in the 1920s.

The history of HBCUs is extensive. Most were established after the Civil War, often with the assistance of northern religious missionary organizations. Established in 1865 Shaw University was the first HBCU in the South to be established after the Civil War. Howard University, Tuskegee University and Morehouse University are some of the familiar schools. However, Cheyney Univ. of Penn.(1837), Lincoln Univ. in Penn.(1854), Wilberforce Univ. in Ohio (1856) were established for blacks before the American Civil War.

Of the 107 HBCU institutons in the United States today, 27 offer doctoral programs and 52 provide graduate degree programs at the Masters Level. At the undergraduate level, 83 of the HBCUs offer a bachelor's degree program and 38 of these schools offer associate degree. HBCUs are distinctive institutions in that they make up only 3% of the nation's institutions of higher learning. 
Admission to the museum is $3 student, $5 adult, $10 family. Visit Sundays from 2-4 p.m. Parking for Ethnic Heritage Museum(EHM) is available in the parking lot on the corner of Morgan and Main Streets next to the Graham-Ginestra House. Entrance to the parking lot is through the alley next to EHM. Tours may be arranged by calling the museum at 815-962-7402.