Common recently spoke with The Huffington Post about the importance of historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs).

Citing his time at FAMU, Common feels like his “experience was special because I was meeting young, black inspiring students who were from all over the country.”

“You were surrounded by people who were focused on education and in the same token, our professors and people that were dedicated to seeing us thrive… they were really, really supportive,” Common said. “It all was to our benefit. I wouldn’t have had that experience going to a non-HBCU.”

With many HBCUs struggling to stay afloat financially due to unequal government funding, declining enrollment and poor leadership, it’s clear to see why Common has “teamed up with Allstate and the Tom Joyner Foundation to raise up to $250,000 in scholarships funds for students at HBCUs.”

Common, who currently has a daughter at Howard University, tells The Huffington Post:

“This is part of our history, part of our tradition. It’s black institutions in America that reinforce who we are and support who we are and nurture who we are. So it’s important that we respect and honor and preserve and enhance those institutions. It’s a way for us to acknowledge our blackness in America – it’s beautiful.”

So, he’s giving back. Common stressed the importance of supporting HBCUs and the students they serve:

“I think the young black generation… are the ones who are going to change things in the biggest way. It’s like giving them the opportunity to be fully prepared and giving them all the resources and giving them the chance to see things and dream and get education and get like opportunities and those things so they can bring all who they are to change [society] for the better for the black community and communities across the world. That’s the most important thing we can do right now. Support them.”

Salute, Common. Way to keep the country’s 107 HBCUs strong.

For more information on how you can help HBCUs remain strong for future generations, click here.