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Black Enterprise Announces the 50 Best Colleges for African Americans Morehouse Ranks #1 Three Times in a Row

ATLANTA, Sept. 16, 2004 – BLACK ENTERPRISE today announced its 2004 list of the 50 Best Colleges & Universities for African Americans. The BE Top Colleges report, which debuted in January 1999, was developed in collaboration with Thomas A. LaVeist, Ph.D., author of the DayStar Guide to Colleges for African Americans and professor of health policy, management, and sociology at Johns Hopkins University. Of the 10 highest ranking schools for 2004, historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) hold five of the top 10 positions; seven of the top 10 are located in the South; and nine of the top 10 are private institutions.

Attaining the No. 1 rank is Morehouse College in Atlanta, Ga. Morehouse is the nation’s largest private liberal arts institution for African American men. The college previously achieved the top spot in 2003 and 2001. “We could not be more proud of this honor, nor more committed to continuing our historic mission,” said Dr. Walter E. Massey, president of Morehouse College. “For more than 137 years, Morehouse has enjoyed a reputation for academic excellence, which has produced some of the nation’s most outstanding leaders. We are proud to aim even higher as we move into the 21st century.” Closely following Morehouse is No. 2 ranked Spelman College in Atlanta. Both Spelman and Morehouse are part of the Atlanta University Center, which shares students, faculty, and resources. Spelman’s urban setting and high academic reputation were instrumental in accomplishing its rank as a top college. "We are proud of the work that we are doing at Spelman College and appreciate the recognition that this ranking represents," says President Beverly Daniel Tatum. "It is empowering for young black women to come to our campus, an institution where they can say, 'This place was built for me, and it is nothing less than the best.’” The historically black college for women previously ranked No. 1 in 1999.

Rounding out the top 10 are: No. 3, Hampton University, Hampton, Va.; No. 4, Howard University, Washington, D.C.; No. 5, Xavier University, New Orleans, La.; No. 6, Florida A&M University, Tallahassee, Fla.; No. 7, Stanford University, Stanford, Ca.; No. 8, Columbia University, New York, N.Y.; No. 9, Harvard University, Cambridge, Mass., and No. 10, Duke University, Durham N.C.

The goal of the 50 Best Colleges for African Americans survey was to be as inclusive as possible while targeting schools that would be of interest to black students. Four hundred and eighty-two colleges were selected based on the following criteria: accredited four-year colleges in which black enrollment was at least 3%, or colleges that are large or well known. BE surveyed a group of 1,855 black higher education professionals with titles such as president, chancellor, and provost. Each was asked to rate schools based on whether they felt the institutions provided a good social and educational environment for African Americans. Schools were categorized according to the college classification protocol developed by U.S. News and World Report, which is a modified version of the protocol developed by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. Survey respondents were asked to rate only schools that they were knowledgeable about. The results were then narrowed to the published Top 50.

The complete list of the 50 Best Colleges for African Americans appears in the October BLACK ENTERPRISE, which hits newsstands on Sept. 21.

Posted by Kara at September 17, 2004 10:38 PM

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