Due to the pandemic, an Atlanta school has become the latest HBCU to cancel student account balances.
Clark Atlanta University in Atlanta said on Friday that it would forgive student debt from the previous five semesters, joining a rising number of historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs) that have done so in recent months.
The university’s president, Dr. George French, said Friday that the COVID-19 pandemic has made the previous two years “emotionally and financially painful” for students and their families.
“As a result, we will continue to do everything we can to assist them in completing their CAU education,” French said in a statement.
“We care about students and want to help them and their families alleviate financial burdens so they may continue pursuing and achieving their educational and professional goals,” he added.
Over the previous two years, the school has been able to provide financial assistance to students thanks to government monies under the CARES Act Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund, according to the institution.
When the CARES Act, a comprehensive COVID-19 relief package, was approved into law last year, that fund was established.
The US Department of Education announced in April that HBCUs would receive $5 billion from the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund thanks to the CARES Act and the American Rescue Plan.
In the aftermath of the pandemic, Clark Atlanta University has become one of several historically black colleges and universities to announce that it will help students pay off their student loans.
South Carolina State University said earlier this month that it would forgive $9.8 million in student debt for “more than 2,500 continuing students.”
Alexander Conyers, the university’s acting president, remarked, “We are dedicated to providing these students with a clear way forward so they can finish their college education and graduate without the burden of financial debt created by events beyond their control.”
According to CNN, Delaware State University announced in May that it will erase more than $700,000 in student loans for recent graduates. According to WNCN, Shaw University in North Carolina has announced that it will cover summer tuition for more than 400 students.
Wilberforce University in Ohio administrators surprised its graduating class by announcing at the school’s commencement ceremonies this year that the institution will wipe out student debt payable in 2020 and 2021.
The school’s president informed pupils at the conclusion of the event that their accounts had been closed. This is a condensed version of the information.