Statement on HBCU Support
As Valdosta State University celebrates Black History Month, we feel compelled to extend our support to our faculty colleagues, staff, and students at HBCUs (historically Black colleges and universities) throughout the country who have recently endured a series of bomb threats. While threats such as these, three of which have occurred in Georgia at Spelman College and USG institutions Fort Valley State University and Albany State University, are never acceptable, we are reminded that attacks on people of African descent in the U.S. have an especially heinous past. Since the establishment of Cheney University of Pennsylvania in 1837, HBCUs have provided a safe space for diverse students to learn, faculty to promote resilience narratives, and administrators to embrace a broad message of inclusivity. Threats to HBCUs are, therefore, not just threats to their campus communities. They are threats to all.
As psychologically traumatizing these recent events have been, they serve to draw attention to the vital role HBCUs play in American education. Their importance is elucidated in a recent article in the Washington Post by the National Conference of Black Political Scientists (https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2022/02/16/hbcus-bomb-threats-racism/) and our offering classes such as HBCUs: A Different World. The course uses the textbook mentioned in the article “Shelter in a Time of Storm: How Black Colleges Fostered Generations of Leadership and Activism.” Valdosta State University’s College of Humanities and Social Sciences, Department of Political Science, and Africana Studies Program stand with HBCUs, their students, faculty, and staff by condemning these threats and offering our love and support.