The enemy never rests.
In 2012’s infancy, we have seen two different situations where HBCUs have come under attack. First, the HBCU ‘Equality’ lawsuit where the four Maryland HBCUs are going through legal hurdles to stay financially competitive with the traditionally white institutions in Maryland. Now, Southern University faces merging with a TWI.
The proposal of merger started in January 2011, when the idea of a merger between Southern University and the University of New Orleans was first discussed. There was immediate outrage to the proposed merger. Jesse Jackson and the Rev. Al Sharpton have came down and spoke to SUNO about sacrificing for the greater good of SUNO and not giving in. Its good to see our black leaders speaking up and speaking out about an unfair fight Southern University has found itself in.
The fact of the matter is that Southern University has done well to rebuild its university after the devastating effects of Hurricane Katrina. To call for a merger is unnecessary, when the truth is put on the table.
The truth is, Southern University reported its highest enrollment since Hurricane Katrina in February 2011. SUNO reached its 94% enrollment pre Hurricane Katrina in February 2012. What does that mean? It means that students are still enrolling at SUNO, and it still provides students an opportunity to excel, learn and graduate at an HBCU.
Every day that Southern University stays an HBCU is a testament to the will of its administration to keep its beloved institution open. It is also a testament to the love of its students and alumni to their HBCU. There will be a day when Southern students and alumni will no longer have to worry about a merger. That day may come sooner rather than later. The merger legislation has been shot down in court once, and surely a stronger opposition to the merger will arise through online petitions, more awareness, etc.
It also helps to defeat possible talks about a merger when your university announces a $3.3 million building added to the campus. It’s even sweeter when the man who fought to propose the merger dedicates the new building.
They haven’t stopped you yet, SUNO, and they never will.
For more information on the SUNO-UNO merger, visit NOLA.com