NORTH CAROLINA, USA — This summer the University of North Carolina System is providing an amazing opportunity for five Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) that fall under their umbrella.
Elizabeth City State University, Fayetteville State University, North Carolina A&T State University, North Carolina Central University and Winston-Salem State University all provide free summer classes for students.
You may be wondering where all this money is coming from? That answer is simple. Since 2020, the UNC System received $465 million dollars in federal aid to support universities and students. Now a portion of that money is going specifically to UNC System's HBCUs to make sure students graduate on time.
Chief Marketing Officer for Winston-Salem State University, Haley Gingles said the opportunity is one that students shouldn't miss out on.
"Our students are so important to us and we're making sure they're on track to graduate. We're constantly evaluating how best we can help our students," Gingles said. "We're really excited about being able to offer free summer courses for our students. Here at WSSU, we wanted to be very strategic and tactical in how we offer that. So we're offering this to our special population, or the most vulnerable students."
At Winston-Salem State, the population of students includes freshmen who failed to complete 30 credit hours and seniors who are missing courses that could cause them not to graduate on time.
The funds for the program have come from the over half a billion dollars North Carolina's HBCUs have received from the federal government since 2020.
North Carolina A&T received the most out of all the universities and has enough money to offer these free summer courses to the entire student body.
Laila Watts is a rising Sophomore at A&T, and she's very excited to take advantage of this opportunity.
"It's really motivated me to take advantage, even though being a college student I wanted my summer to myself to me, anything free is good, especially for the out-of-state students," she said.