U.S. Senate Commemorates 125 years of Historically Black Land Grant Institutions

Carper and Coons sign on to resolution that recognizes Delaware State University among these institutions

WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Sens. Tom Carper and Chris Coons (both D-Del.) joined their Senate colleagues to pass a resolution commemorating 125 years of historically-black Federal land-grant institutions, including Delaware State University in Dover. These institutions are dedicated to providing educational opportunities for all through innovative scientific research and community-minded extension programs.

On August 30, 1890, the Second Morrill Act led to the creation of 19 historically black Federal land-grant education institutions. This August 30, 2015, will be known as 1890 Land-Grant Institutions Quasquicentennial Recognition Day.

“Delaware State University has a rich history of being a leader among institutions. I am proud to recognize DSU and the 18 other barrier-breaking institutions that provide research and support to our state and region,” said Sen. Carper. “Today, DSU is on a fast course to becoming an elite research institution with the addition of its optics program, its partnerships with the private and public sector, and its outreach in the community in Delaware and abroad.”

“It’s my pleasure to recognize the anniversary of the Second Morrill Act, which created the historically Black land-grant Institutions,” said Sen. Coons. “Today we celebrate the history and remarkable achievements of the 19 land grant institutions, including Delaware State University led by Dr. Harry Williams. As we mark this historic occasion, we must continue to fight for the opportunities these institutions have provided, the proud history and heritage they have built, and the legacy they leave for generations of students who pass through their doorways every semester.”

“The 1890 Morrill Act overcame the obstacles of intellectual and professional disenfranchisement and made higher education available to African Americans in this country who otherwise might not have been so blessed,” said Dr. Harry Williams, president of Delaware State University. “The United States is indebted to its 1890 Land Grant institutions for the graduates they have produced and added in professionalism and productivity to the richness of this nation.”

Joined by Delaware State University as a Federal land-grant institution are Lincoln University, Alcorn State University, the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff, Alabama A&M University, Prairie View A&T University, Southern University, Virginia State University, Kentucky State University, the University of Maryland-Eastern Shore, Florida A&M University, North Carolina A&T University, Fort Valley State University, South Carolina State University, Langston University, Tennessee State University, Tuskegee University, Central State University, and West Virginia State University.