The Thurgood Marshall College Fund (TMCF) is named for the U.S. Supreme Court’s first African American Justice, Thurgood Marshall. It was established in 1987 under the leadership of Dr. N. Joyce Payne in cooperation with Miller Brewing Co., Sony Music, the NBA, and two major higher education associations—The former National Association of State Universities & Land-Grant Colleges (NASULGC) (now the Association of Public & Land-Grant Universities (APLU), and the American Association for State Colleges and Universities (AASCU). TMCF represents all Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) and supports nearly 300,000 students attending its 47 member-schools that include publicly-supported HBCUs, medical schools and law schools.
Why We Exist
HBCUs disproportionately enroll low-income, first-generation and academically underprepared college students while comprising only 3% of America’s colleges
Funding for HBCUs are but a small fraction compared to their higher education counterparts
College costs have risen 600% since 1985, placing higher education out of reach for an increasing section of the American population
97% of students attending TMCF member-schools seek some type of financial aid to support their college education
Without financial support, 1 in 3 college freshmen drop out of school before their sophomore year, and for first-generation students, the rate is 90%
“The American economy will face a shortage of at least 16 million college graduates by 2025.” -Kresge Foundation
TMCF helps students with a clear intention and the motivation to succeed and acquire a high-quality college education at an affordable cost. TMCF also efficiently connects high performing, world-ready students with top tier employment opportunities—access that students or employers might not have on their own. Through its scholarships and programs, TMCF plays a key role in preparing leaders of tomorrow.