There are over 100 Historically Black Colleges and Universities in the US. Unfortunately, the attention often only goes to a select few. While those colleges are deserving of the recognition they receive, many more deserve a little bit of the spotlight because of the outstanding work their faculty and administrators do in educating students. The eleven colleges on this list were selected after reviewing dozens of rankings developed by different organizations and websites including Diverse Issues in Higher Education, US News and World Report, Washington Monthly Magazine and Value Colleges.
Huston-Tillotson has made the list of top colleges on over 16 rankings in the past 3 years. In 2015 it was named one of the nation's "Most Affordable Small Private Colleges" by Affordable Colleges Online. Huston-Tillotson was also named on of the "50 Best Colleges for Adult Education 2017-2018" by Great Value Colleges. US News & World Report named H-T its #23 college among "Regional Colleges-West."
Bowie State, one of four public HBCUs in Maryland, and located outside of Washington, DC has been placed on more than 17 lists of top colleges in the past 3 years. Bowie State was included in Forbes' 2016 Top Colleges list. In 2015 Edsmart named the college #16 for the starting salaries of HBCU grads, with Economist Magazine naming it the top school in MD and the #61 best value in nation for exceeding earning expectations. In 2016 Great College Deals named it #7 on its "20 Best Deals: Small Colleges for Athletic Types."
The nation's only Seventh-day Adventist HBCU has been included on 18 rankings of top colleges recently. It's choirs have been ranked at #16 in the world and #1 in the pop/jazz gospel category by INTERKULTUR. Niche named it #8 in the state for "Smartest Student Bodies." Med-Colleges.com ranked its Nutrition & Dietetics, General Medicine (pre-med), Health Services programs as #3 in the state. In 2015 Edsmart named it the HBCU with the 10th "Highest Retention and Graduation Rates." In 2014 US News & World Report listed the HBCUs with the lowest acceptance rates and Oakwood was #7.
South Florida's only HBCU has been included on at least 19 lists and rankings. Great College Deals named it #11 of "20 Best Deals on Colleges for Dreamers" (people who want to change the world or pursue 'ideas outside the box.') In 2016 Washington Monthly Magazine named it #75 on its list of National Universities-Bachelor's and #32 in the nation for social mobility. Florida Memorial is #6 in the nation in graduating African-Americans with Bachelor's degrees in transportation industries, specifically aviation.
Since 2014 UAPB has been named a top school on more than 23 different college ranking lists. In 2016 US News and World Report named it the #5 Top Public College in the South and GoodCall ranked it #30 in the nation among "The Best Public Colleges and Universities for Earning Scholarships." It is considered the 3rd best college in the nation among "Great Small Colleges to earn a Teaching Degree" by Best Degree Programs and the #2 "Best Value Colleges and Universities in Arkansas" by Best Value Schools.
Tougaloo is probably one of the top HBCUs many don't know about. Listed on over 24 rankings in the past few years, "The 'Loo" is the #10 producer of African-Americans with degrees in History and one of the top 50 in the nation for graduating African-Americans with degrees in Math and Physical Sciences. Scholargeek's 2015 ranking of the "Best Black Universities in United States" named Tougaloo #10. That same year, Economist Magazine named it the 5th Top School in the state, ranked by alumni earnings that were above expectations. And Best Value Colleges ranked Tougaloo # 11 in the nation on its list of the "50 Best Value Small Colleges for a Biology Degree."
Fayetteville State University is #4 on this list because it has been recognized on more than 27 lists for its academics, affordability and programming for students. 99% of its nursing graduates have passed the NCLEX (national nursing exam) for the past 4 years. In 2016 US News & World Report named it #7 on its list of colleges offering the "Cheapest In-State Tuition" and named it one of its top public universities in the South (#43). Social Work Degree Guide ranked Fayetteville State #5 on its list of "50 Most Affordable Selective Schools for a Bachelor of Social Work."
North Carolina's public HBCUs have gained recognition for the outstanding job they do when it comes to lifting students out of poverty. Winston-Salem State University is no different; in 2017 CollegeNet named it a Social Mobility Innovator. It's been recognized more than 31 times in the past few years in various rankings. WSSU ranks #5 in the nation for conferring bachelor's degrees in nursing to African-Americans, #17 for in the nation for nursing degrees to Native Americans. In 2016 the students who completed its Physical Therapy program earned a 100% first-time passage rate on their licensure exams. Affordable Schools identified WSSU as offering one of the "25 Most Affordable Bachelor’s of Independent Studies" and in 2016 Money Magazine named it one of the top colleges in the US.
Claflin has been building its reputation consistently for over a decade, particularly among students on the East Coast, and for good reason. Since 2015 it has received high marks in over 34 rankings. Last year Great College Deals named it the #9 college in the nation on its "20 Best Deals on Small Colleges for Intellectuals" listing. Diverse Ability Magazine named it to its list of its "Schools that strive to support diversity initiatives." In 2015 Washington Monthly indicated Claflin was the #18 liberal arts college in nation for exceeding its predicted graduation rate. US News & World Report rated Claflin the #9 HBCU in its 2017 college rankings.
Elizabeth City finds it way to the top of this list because it consistently receives high marks on just about every college ranking that gets published, with over 35 listings since 2015. From 2012-15 Washington Monthly named it the #1 baccalaureate college in the nation. Business Research Guide named ECSU's Business Department #44 on its list of Most Innovative Small College Business Departments. It is also ranked #50 in the nation for earning scholarships by GoodCall. In 2015 it was listed as #6 among HBCUs for its retention and graduation rate. And, US News and World Report named Elizabeth City State the #2 Top Public College in the South last year.
Prairie View is an Honorable Mention because its size and participation in the SWAC give it name-brand recognition, at least in the South. It has been recognized on at least 19 different rankings of colleges. Among them: in 2015 Ed Smart recognized PVAMU as the HBCU with the highest starting salaries for its graduates. Top Management Degrees ranked its online MBA program as #38 in the nation in its 2017 rankings. The 2016 CollegeNet Social Mobility Index Rankings, ranked Prairie View #23 in the nation. In 2015 & 2016 Washington Monthly Magazine named it a "Best Bang for Your Buck- South" college.