Harris applauds accreditation for Cheyney University

HARRISBURG, Nov. 25 – Calling it a positive decision for both Pennsylvania and Cheyney University, state Rep. Jordan Harris, D-Phila., House Democratic Whip, released the following statement regarding Cheyney receiving accreditation:

“Cheyney university retaining its accreditation is excellent news for not simply the university, but for Pennsylvania and the African American community at large. As the oldest historically black institution of higher learning in the nation and the conscience of the African American community, Cheyney represents an integral cultural piece of the African American experience in higher education.

“As a former chairman of the Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus, the PLBC and I were very involved in investigating and helping to form solutions to right the ship at Cheyney and I’m proud that that same passion has been continued by current PLBC Chairman Stephen Kinsey and his leadership team.

“Collectively, we’ve been working with leaders in state government, alumni and community members to support Cheyney. We’ve had tremendous support from Governor Tom Wolf and Chair of the Board of Governors of the State System of Higher Education Cindy Shapira, who recognize the importance of helping Cheyney and were willing to work together to address problems that originated before this administration. I’d also like to thank the Cheyney Council of Trustees and specifically recognize Cheyney President Aaron Walton who made tough decisions that were unpopular at the time but have proven to have been necessary to strengthen the university.

“Historically, black colleges and universities served to educate African American students at a time when they had next to no opportunities to take part in a formalized higher education. Culturally, HBCUs provide a unique experience and help to close the racial wealth gap as well as the college achievement gap. I look forward to watching Cheyney continue to grow and provide African American students a quality higher education and prepare them for a successful future.”