Many colleges did not admit blacks before the civil rights era. Hence, African-American leaders such as Booker T. Washington and Mary McLeod Bethune founded their own private institutions, and many states established segregated public colleges for blacks. These public and private schools now constitute the historically black colleges and universities (HBCU). As of 2010, there are 105 HBCUs, and Florida is home to four of them.

Florida A&M; University

Founded in 1887, Florida A&M University is Florida’s only public HBCU. It is in the state capital of Tallahassee. Accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, FAMU offers 62 bachelor’s degrees, 11 Ph.D. programs, two professional degrees and 36 master’s degrees. A research institution, FAMU receives about $54 million in research funding every year.

Florida A&M University

1500 Wahnish Way

Tallahassee, FL 32307


Bethune-Cookman University

Originally named The Daytona Educational and Industrial Training School for Negro Girls, Bethune-Cookman University opened its doors in 1904. Now coed, B-CU was accredited in 1970 by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. As of 2010, B-CU houses seven academic schools, which offer 35 undergraduate programs and a master’s program in transformative leadership. A private school, B-CU provides scholarships and financial aid to reduce tuition costs.

Bethune-Cookman University

640 Dr. Mary McLeod Bethune Boulevard

Daytona Beach, FL 32114


Edward Waters College

Established in 1866 to educate freed slaves, Edward Waters College is Florida’s oldest HBCU. The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools granted four-year accreditation to the school in 1979. Home to roughly 800 students, Edward Waters College offers nine undergraduate degrees as of 2010. The curriculum consists of general education courses, mission courses, major requirements and electives.

Edward Waters College

1658 Kings Road

Jacksonville, FL 32209-6199


Florida Memorial University

Founded in 1879, Florida Memorial University is one of The United Negro College Fund’s 39 member institutions. Located in Miami Gardens, Florida Memorial University educates about 1,800 students each year. The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools granted accreditation to Florida Memorial University, and the school offers 44 undergraduate and four graduate programs. An honors program is available to students seeking the highest level of challenge.

Florida Memorial University

15800 N.W. 42nd Ave.

Miami Gardens, FL 33054