Hampton University recently announced plans to offer free room, board and tuition to Ukrainian and International students displaced by the ongoing conflict in that country. President Dr. William Harvey announced that the university will invite between 50 and 100 students to continue their education on campus this summer. “The collective Hampton University faculty, staff and students are heart-broken because the war-torn country of Ukraine must deal with atrocities like the bombing of maternity wards, hospitals and other civilian areas,” he said. “I think this partnership is something that can be beneficial to a great number of students and families. My entire career has been focused on helping people to achieve and meet their goals.” The students will attend classes at Hampton for the 2022 summer session free of charge with the option to stay at the university in the fall at the regular tuition and fees rate.
While some champion this initiative, others have critically questioned why the allocated funds are not being used to help Black students domestically who cannot afford to attend the school or current students facing financial hardships. One Twitter user stated, “I attend @_HamptonU now, and I recently took out $10,500 loan to pay my remaining balance, I am beyond livid about what they are doing, I am in the process of sending an email to the president and seeking legal options. I could use that money, and other students like me.”
TV personality Yandy Smith also chimed in, writing in a social media post, “That’s amazing but ummmmmm…I know some kids around the corner from Hampton that need school at no cost too, some kids in Harlem, some kids in Philly, some kids in Atlanta. Hmmmmmm happy for the Ukrainians tho.”
Many HU alumni also took to social media to demand that the university rescind the offer, even threatening to withhold further donations or skip homecoming in the fall. One person posted, “Tomorrow, every person who cares about the safety of black students at #hamptonuniversity need to call Dr. Harvey office and demand they rescind this offer immediately or the alumni will not give back or attend homecoming this year!”
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