PLBC visits Cheyney University to celebrate HBCU week

HARRISBURG, Sept. 21 – State Rep. Joran Harris, D-Phila., chairman of the Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus, visited Cheyney University this week to celebrate National Historically Black College and University week. Harris and several members of the PLBC were joined by Congressman Dwight Evans to discuss the importance of HBCUs in Pennsylvania and throughout the nation.

“It was a pleasure to join my colleagues and speak with Cheyney University students about the role that HBCUs play in our nation,” Harris said. “Cheyney University is much more than a place we send our students to learn. For 180 years, Cheyney has prepared students of color to successfully take on the world. We must ensure that it continues to do so.”

Established in 1837, Cheyney University is the nation’s first historically black college. Harris and other members of the PLBC serve on the Cheyney University task force. In May, the task force urged the State System of Higher Education to forgive the university of more than $30 million in loans.

“Our visit to Cheyney University was productive and gave us an opportunity to speak with students and get their perspective on what is happening at the university,” said Rep. James Roebuck, D-Phila., Democratic chairman of the House Education Committee. “As Democratic chairman, I believe these conversations are important and help us make thoughtful decisions in Harrisburg. This encourages me to intensify my efforts to support Cheyney in any way I can."

“It was great visiting Cheyney University and being able to speak with an amazing group of students,” Rep. Carol Hill-Evans, D-York, said. “Despite all that the students have faced in the past, they are as resilient as ever. This proves that Cheyney has a unique role in our commonwealth and in our country. We must continue to make sure that it maintains this position.”

Harris said the PLBC’s visit to Cheyney University is the perfect example of a continued partnership to return the university to prominence.

“While Cheyney is on the right path now, our work does not stop here,” Harris said. “We must continue to stand with Cheyney and see that its students and faculty have the resources they need to succeed. Through working together, I am confident that we will do just that.”