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Presidential Executive Order on The White House Initiative to Promote Excellence and Innovation at Historically Black Colleges and Universities

Tuesday, February 28, 2017 15:19
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By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution
and the laws of the United States of America, and in order to
advance opportunities in higher education, it is hereby ordered as

Section 1.  Policy.  Historically black colleges and
universities (HBCUs) have made, and continue to make, extraordinary
contributions to the general welfare and prosperity of our
country.  Established by visionary leaders, America’s HBCUs
have, for more than 150 years, produced many of our Nation’s
leaders in business, government, academia, and the military, and
have helped create a black middle class.  The Nation’s more
than 100 HBCUs are located in 20 States, the District of Columbia,
and the U.S. Virgin Islands, and serve more than 300,000
undergraduate, graduate, and professional students.  These
institutions are important engines of economic growth and public
service, and they are proven ladders of intergenerational

 A White House Initiative on HBCUs would:  advance
America’s full human potential; foster more and better
opportunities in higher education; strengthen the capacity of HBCUs
to provide the highest-quality education; provide equitable
opportunities for HBCUs to participate in Federal programs; and
increase the number of college-educated Americans who feel
empowered and able to advance the common good at home and

Sec. 2.  White House Initiative on HBCUs.

(a)  Establishment.  There is established the White
House Initiative on Historically Black Colleges and Universities
(Initiative), housed in the Executive Office of the President and
led by an Executive Director designated by the President.

(b)  Mission and Functions.  The Initiative shall work
with agencies, private-sector employers, educational associations,
philanthropic organizations, and other partners to increase the
capacity of HBCUs to provide the highest-quality education to an
increasing number of students.  The Initiative shall have two
primary missions:

(i)   increasing the private-sector role, including
the role of private foundations, in:

(A)  strengthening HBCUs through enhanced institutional
planning and development, fiscal stability, and financial
management; and

(B)  upgrading institutional infrastructure, including the
use of technology, to ensure the long-term viability of these
institutions; and

(ii)  enhancing HBCUs’ capabilities to serve our Nation’s
young adults by:

(A)  strengthening HBCUs’ ability to equitably participate
in Federal programs and exploring new ways of improving the
relationship between the Federal Government and HBCUs;

(B)  fostering private-sector initiatives and
public-private partnerships while promoting specific areas and
centers of academic research and program-based excellence
throughout HBCUs;

(C)  improving the availability, dissemination, and quality
of information concerning HBCUs in the public policy sphere;

(D)  sharing administrative and programmatic best practices
within the HBCU community;

(E)  partnering with elementary and secondary education
stakeholders to build a “cradle-to-college” pipeline; and

(F)  convening an annual White House Summit on HBCUs to
address, among other topics, matters related to the Initiative’s
missions and functions.

(c)  Federal Agency Plans.

(i)    The Secretary of Education (Secretary), in
consultation with the Executive Director, shall identify those
agencies that regularly interact with HBCUs.

(ii)   Each agency identified by the Secretary under
subsection (c)(i) of this section shall prepare an annual plan
(Agency Plan) describing its efforts to strengthen the capacity of
HBCUs to participate in applicable Federal programs and
initiatives.  Where appropriate, each Agency Plan shall
address, among other things, the agency’s proposed efforts to:

(A)  establish how the agency intends to increase the
capacity of HBCUs to compete effectively for grants, contracts, or
cooperative agreements;

(B)  identify Federal programs and initiatives where HBCUs
are not well represented, and improve HBCUs’ participation in those
programs and initiatives; and

(C)  encourage public-sector, private-sector, and community
involvement in improving the overall capacity of HBCUs.

(iii)  The head of each agency identified in subsection
(c)(i) of this section shall submit its Agency Plan to the
Secretary and the Executive Director no later than 90 days after
being so identified, and submit an updated Agency Plan
annually thereafter.

(iv)   To help fulfill the objectives of the Agency
Plans, the head of each agency identified by the Secretary may
provide, as appropriate, technical assistance and information to
the Executive Director to enhance communication with HBCUs
concerning the agency’s program activities and the preparation of
applications or proposals for grants, contracts, or cooperative

(v)    Each agency identified by the Secretary
shall appoint a senior official to report directly to the agency
head on that agency’s progress under this order, and to serve as
liaison to the Initiative.

(d)  Interagency Working Group.  There is established
an Interagency Working Group, which shall be chaired by the
Executive Director and shall consist of one representative
from each agency identified by the Secretary pursuant to
subsection (c)(i) of this section, to help advance and coordinate
the work required by this order.

     Sec. 3.  President’s Board of
Advisors on HBCUs.

(a)  Establishment.  There is established in the
Department of Education the President’s Board of Advisors on
Historically Black Colleges and Universities (Board).  The
Board shall consist of not more than 25 members appointed by the
President.  The Board shall include the Secretary, the
Executive Director, representatives of a variety of sectors — such
as philanthropy, education, business, finance, entrepreneurship,
innovation, and private foundations — and sitting HBCU
presidents.  The President shall designate one member of the
Board to serve as its Chair, who shall help direct the Board’s
work in coordination with the Secretary and in consultation with
the Executive Director.  The Chair shall also consult with the
Executive Director regarding the time and location of the Board’s
meetings, which shall take place at least once every
6 months.

(b)  Mission and Functions.  The Board shall advise
the President, through the Initiative, on all matters pertaining to
strengthening the educational capacity of HBCUs.  In
particular, the Board shall advise the President in the following

(i)    improving the identity, visibility,
distinctive capabilities, and overall competitiveness of HBCUs;

(ii)   engaging the philanthropic, business,
government, military, homeland-security, and education communities
in a national dialogue regarding new HBCU programs and

(iii)  improving the ability of HBCUs to remain fiscally
secure institutions that can assist the Nation in achieving its
educational goals and in advancing the interests of all

(iv)   elevating the public awareness of, and
fostering appreciation of, HBCUs; and

(v)    encouraging public-private investments
in HBCUs.

(c)  Administration.  The Department of Education
shall provide funding and administrative support for the Board,
consistent with applicable law and subject to the availability of
appropriations.  Members of the Board shall serve without
compensation, but shall be reimbursed for travel expenses,
including per diem in lieu of subsistence, as authorized by
law.  Insofar as the Federal Advisory Committee Act, as
amended (5 U.S.C. App.), may apply to the Board, any functions
of the President under that Act, except for those of reporting to
the Congress, shall be performed by the Chair, in accordance with
guidelines issued by the Administrator of General Services.

(d)  Report.  The Board shall report annually to the
President on the Board’s progress in carrying out its duties under
this section.

Sec. 4.  Revocation of Executive Order.  Executive
Order 13532 of February 26, 2010 (Promoting Excellence,
Innovation, and Sustainability at Historically Black Colleges and
Universities), as amended, is revoked.

Sec. 5.  General Provisions.  (a)  For the
purposes of this order, “historically black colleges and
universities” shall mean those institutions listed in 34 C.F.R.

(b)  This order shall apply to executive departments and
agencies designated by the Secretary.  Those departments and
agencies shall provide timely reports and such information as is
required to effectively carry out the objectives of this order.

(c)  The heads of executive departments and agencies shall
assist and provide information to the Board, consistent with
applicable law, as may be necessary to carry out the functions of
the Board.  Each executive department and agency shall bear
its own expenses of participating in the Initiative.

(d)  Nothing in this order shall be construed to impair or
otherwise affect:

(i)   the authority granted by law to an executive
department or agency, or the head thereof; or

(ii)  the functions of the Director of the Office of
Management and Budget relating to budgetary, administrative, or
legislative proposals.

(e)  This order shall be implemented consistent with
applicable law and subject to the availability of

(f)  This order is not intended to, and does not, create
any right or benefit, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law
or in equity by any party against the United States, its
departments, agencies, or entities, its officers, employees, or
agents, or any other person.





February 28, 2017.


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