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Yale slavery reparations includes sending local students to out-of-state HBCUs

About 50 students per year will get financial aid to go to other schools

Yale University will expand its atonement for its past connections to slavery by helping local New Haven high school students attend college – out of state.

The Pennington Fellowship will award local students $20,000 per year to help them attend Historically Black Colleges and Universities across the country, according to a recent announcement from President Peter Salovey. There are no HBCUs in Connecticut.

A spokesperson for Yale’s New Haven Promise, which will administer the merit-based fellowship, told The College Fix that all resident high school seniors may apply, regardless of race. There are still programs offering funding for students to attend Yale, specifically.

“Over the last 10 years, nearly 500 city students have expressed interest in attending a Historically Black College or University,” Brett Hoover told The Fix. “It was the right time to make such an opportunity to allow students’ dreams [to] become a reality.”

The Fix had asked why Yale would fund students’ education at other universities.

“Yale has been funding New Haven students to go to college through New Haven Promise since 2010 and is usually funding more than 700 students at any given time,” Hoover also said. “Yale itself has a low acceptance rate (about 6%) and while the university admits between a dozen and two dozen New Haven public school students annually, the university makes the offer to help support city students in meeting their college dreams.”

MORE: Stanford panel puts reparations price tag at $10 to $12 trillion

Hoover said the Yale Pathways program is an opportunity for New Haven students who want to attend Yale. “Yale University has long hosted a variety of programs designed to bolster student performance in the city,” the spokesperson said. “Many students who have participated in the Yale Pathways programs have matriculated and graduated from the University.”

The program will begin in Fall 2023 and will support 40 to 50 students per year, Yale Daily News reported. New Haven Promise has partnered with Morehouse College, Morgan State University, Hampton University, and Spelman College but is working to add more eligible institutions.

The news comes one year after Salovey promised funding toward HBCUs in response to research from the Yale and Slavery Working Group that showed the the school helped block construction of a college for black citizens in 1831.

Salovey emphasized that the Pennington Fellowship, named after the first black student at Yale, is a response to “historical disparities in educational opportunities for Black citizens” as well as “Yale’s historical role and associations with slavery.”

“Our responsibility to discover light and truth compels us to reckon with our past,” Salovey said in the announcement. “Although the working group’s research activities are still underway, its findings thus far point us to some actions we can take now.”

The Slavery Working Group officially recognized the findings at a conference last year, when Salovey promised funds for HBCUs and the city of New Haven.

His third promise, the construction of a memorial recognizing enslaved and indigenous people, hasn’t been met.

MORE: Slave descendants question Georgetown $1 billion reparations fund

IMAGE: New Haven Promise

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About the Author
College Fix contributor Hudson Crozier is a student at the University of North Texas studying journalism and political science. He is senior contributor for Upward News and has also written for The Federalist, Red Liberty Media, and others.