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The big HBCU leaders in athletic conferences recently announced that they’d be working together to amplify the HBCU name moving forward in the future.
Recently announced on Dec. 30, the commissioners that represent four HBCU conferences released a joint statement announcing their promise to increase efforts. The four conferences included the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA), the Southwestern Athletic Conference (SWAC), the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) and the NCAA Histrocially Black Athletic Conferences (HBCUs).
In their collaborative statement, the commissioners from all these four conferences emphasized on the differences that their teams have in terms of division, size and general makeup while also acknowledging their main mission. All of the leaders put focus on the fact that their main purpose is to help the athletes and students in general at HBCUs move ahead in their educational and burgeoning professional careers.
“Collectively, in our membership footprint from north to south, the four power conferences institutions’ economic value ranges from $22 million to $1.5 billion in our HBCU communities,” said the commissioners in their statement. “We agree that we are here to advance the mission of our institutions as members of the NCAA and to support the center of what brings us all together.”
“We agree that we have a collective work and responsibility in this season to use our platform, passion, and presence to advocate and support the mission of our HBCU institutions and student-athletes in higher education,” they added.
The latest meeting between the commissioners from the four HBCU conferences is part of an annual event between the leaders. Since 2019, they’ve met yearly to focus on ways that they can work on fulfilling their strategies. In the past, their work has seen partnerships with the NCAA Office of Inclusion, Black College Hall of Fame and other championship opportunities come to fruition.
Their latest endeavor came in August 2021 when the four Conference Commissioners collaborated with Howard University graduate, senior writer and current NFL Network reporter Steve Wyche to host a roundtable discussion.
With their partnership, the leaders and the NFL helped HBCU athletes learn more about the inner workings of the NFL and professional football in general.
Along with using strategies in the game, analyzing data as well as learning about how to find talent acquisition and how to develop, speakers from the field also gave students tips on how to enter professional football through an experienceship program.