Sen. Cory Booker’s campaign said Tuesday the Democratic presidential candidate would pump $100 billion into historically black colleges and universities and other institutions serving minorities as part of his effort to boost higher education.
Booker, who said both of his parents earned their degrees from HBCUs, said the plan would allocate $100 billion over a 10-year period, with $30 billion in the form of grants from the Department of Education, another $40 billion from his green technology hub and $40 billion for capital improvements.
The former Newark, N.J., mayor said funds for the plan would come from a tax code overhaul and repeal of corporate tax cuts approved under the Trump administration.
As of the fall of 2016, United States has 102 historically black colleges and universities, 290 Hispanic-serving institutions, 35 tribally-controlled colleges, and 113 institutions for Asian-American, Native and Pacific Islander students, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
“Cory believes that Historically Black Colleges and Universities and Minority-Serving Institutions play a central role in creating pathways to opportunity and empowering Black communities,” a statement announcing the plan on Booker’s website said.
“That’s why today he is outlining actions he will take as president to ensure that America’s HBCUs and MSIs are well-funded, affordable and continue to deliver opportunities for Black and Brown Americans,” the statement continued.
Other Democratic candidates have targeted HBCUs. Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., said his campaign would give $10 billion to such institutions. Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., has pledged $50 billion while Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif., aid she would send $60 billion.
Booker’s plan would also support legislation that would have the government pay for student tuition, fees, and expenses at public colleges and increase the value of Pell Grants for low-income student borrowers to $12,400.
It would also change the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program to cancel the college debts of those working in education, public defense or the military, and forgive student loan debt of low-income students who can’t repay their debts from failed for-profit colleges.
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