Virginia State University has been named the HBCU of the Year.
The university, located in Ettrick near Petersburg, was named the HBCU of the Year last week by HBCU Digest, an online blog that reports on the news of HBCUs. The HBCU Awards is the only awards program celebrating achievement at historically black colleges and universities in the U.S.
“Virginia State University demonstrated excellence across virtually all areas of the academic enterprise,” said Jarrett Carter Sr., the founding editor of HBCU Digest, in a prepared statement. “The institution showcased stability in leadership, productivity in research and outreach in its programs of strength — agriculture, education and business.”
Carter added: “Among all HBCUs, Virginia State was a top performer within the public higher education sector in attracting and retaining first-time college students, and it was among the most competitive institutions in excellence among its men’s and women’s athletic programs. Virginia State University was a model of success for all institutions, historically black or otherwise, during the last academic year and it was an honor to recognize the achievements of their executives, students, faculty and alumni at our annual ceremony.”
VSU was chosen by a panel of previous HBCU Award winners, presidents and chancellors, and members of the media that cover HBCUs.
“It’s because of the incredible hard work and commitment of our wonderful faculty and staff who give of their time to our students,” VSU President Makola M. Abdullah said in his acceptance speech. “It’s our alumni who set a high standard for our students to follow. It’s the dedication of our Board of Visitors for all that they do for the University. I am proud to be the 14th president of Virginia State University.”
VSU’s Board of Visitors was named the Best Board of Trustees of the Year award, and Brianna Bundick-Kelly was named the Female Student of the Year.
Last year, the university’s Reginald F. Lewis College of Business earned the Best Business Program award, and Abdullah was named the Male President of the Year.