I Was Born For This: Breaking My Silence on Black Colleges


I have a few writing rules.

I do not write when I am angry and I do not write about HBCUs.

The former may go without saying the but the latter really flummoxes people. I am a graduate of an HBCU. I’m a third generation HBCU graduate. I study higher education. I study race and inequality. And I do not talk about HBCUs.

There became a point when the scope of my readership meant that what I write is often read through me. Intellectually, I go for the truth as close as I can approximate it and ethically, rigorously argue it. I fear that those two things may be in conflict. And I care too much to let that happen. So, I do not talk about HBCUs.

Except today I am talking at an HBCU. It is my HBCU. I am delivering the annual Mason-Sekora lecture. I am an oddball…

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