Wednesday, July 6, 2022

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Opening statements today in appeal to protect DACA; last chance to register to vote in MO August primary; and mapping big-game routes.

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Highland Park mass shooting witnesses describe horrific scene, police release details about shooter, and Rudy Giuliani, Senator Lindsey Graham, receive subpoenas as part of an investigation surrounding former President Trump.

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From flying saucers to bologna: America's summer festivals kick off, rural hospitals warn they do not have the necessities to respond in the post-Roe scramble, advocates work to counter voter suppression, and campaigns encourage midterm voting in Indian Country.

Report: HBCU Students Face Obstacles to Meeting Basic Needs

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Tuesday, February 22, 2022   

The pandemic's lingering effects are being felt by some college students struggling to make it to graduation.

A new report focuses on the barriers facing students at historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs).

The survey of 5,000 HBCU students found 46% had been food insecure in the last 30 days. Maryland's Morgan State University, one of the schools surveyed, opened a Food Resource Center on campus in 2018 to address student hunger.

Kevin Banks, vice president for student affairs at Morgan State University who oversees the center, said the challenge to afford food, housing and school can affect students' mental health.

"If you don't take care of those, then the students cannot focus on the goal at hand, and that is to get their education," Banks explained. "That plays into their psyche, because we know if you're hungry, if you're homeless, you can't even begin to think about doing schoolwork."

The center aims to educate students on healthy eating and addresses hunger through food distribution days. Banks estimates about 40 students attend the free food distributions, which happen every three weeks.

Terrell Strayhorn, provost and senior vice president for academic affairs at Virginia Union University and director of the Center for the Study of Historically Black Colleges and Universities, said the racial inequities brought to the forefront by the pandemic, such as access to affordable health care and housing, also play out on HBCU campuses.

"Just because there are basic needs that we all have doesn't mean that we have equal resources and equal opportunity," Strayhorn pointed out. "External threats like a pandemic and the historic quest for racial justice in this country impact all of us differently."

The report is a joint effort by the Hope Center for College, Community and Justice, and Virginia Union University's Center for the Study of Historically Black Colleges and Universities. It makes state and federal policy recommendations for lawmakers, including expanding financial aid and emergency aid options for HBCU students.


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