United Negro College Fund (UNCF)

In 1944, UNCF (United Negro College Fund) was founded to help champion Black higher education through joint institutional fundraising, providing new scholarships, fellowships, programs and supports for its member institutions so they can continue to advance their respective missions. To further its partnerships with Black colleges and universities and support their ongoing transformation and improvement, UNCF formed the Institute for Capacity Building in 2006.

Since its founding, UNCF has worked to provide a range of direct supports and technical assistance to 41+ Black colleges and universities by:

  • Promoting the adoption of best practices emerging from country’s network of HBCUs and Predominantly Black Institutions.​​
  • Advocating policy and fundraising priorities to help Black institutions and students to thrive.
  • Innovating new partnerships, processes, technologies and strategies, all focused on institutional sustainability.
  • Storytelling, by marshaling research, evaluation, communications, and communities of practice to offer accurate perspectives on HBCUs and Black students

With support from the Gates Foundation, the UNCF is accelerating institutional transformation efforts to power higher education as an engine for racial and socioeconomic equity. Five other intermediaries are participating in this effort; they were  selected based on their expertise and potential to disrupt generational poverty. UNCF’s Institute for Capacity Building (ICB) will draw on its 41 institutional partners, a network of HBCUs and predominantly Black institutions. Nearly three-fourths of college presidents noted in a survey that to thrive in an increasingly complex, tech-driven world, they must rethink their business models and campus cultures for greater inclusivity and mobility—and they seek intermediary partners to guide that change.



Federal Policy and Advocacy

K-12 Advocacy


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