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The Desegregation of Bluefield State College

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Abstract:

Bluefield State College (BSC) is an HBCU in southern West Virginia, one of two such designated schools in the state. From its opening in 1897 through 1965, BSC transitioned from an all-black to a predominantly white school. Today, the institution serves a nearly 90 percent white student population. This paper examines some of the factors that influenced a rapid change in demographics at BSC between the Brown v. Board of Education decision in 1954 and 1965, by which time the school supported a majority white student population. But not only was the student population desegregated. Hiring of white administrators and faculty was taken to such an extreme that there were no black faculty members by 1998.
Changes at BSC have not occurred by accident, as adjustments in curriculum, housing, recruiting, hiring and funding reflect a plan to recreate a student and faculty population that is majority white. Since the geographic area from which the school draws its students has also seen a shift in racial demographics during the past fifty years, changes at BSC have been attributed to the overall population variations in southern West Virginia. However, closer examination of key incidents and trends between 1965 and 1998 reveal deeper causes for the resulting desegregation of an educational institution that was created to assist and improve economic conditions and potential professional opportunities for black students.
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Association:
Name: 95th Annual Convention
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http://www.asalh.org


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URL: http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p436203_index.html
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MLA Citation:

Cochran, Dana. "The Desegregation of Bluefield State College" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the 95th Annual Convention, Raleigh Convention Center, Raleigh, North Carolina, Sep 29, 2010 <Not Available>. 2014-11-27 <http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p436203_index.html>

APA Citation:

Cochran, D. S. , 2010-09-29 "The Desegregation of Bluefield State College" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the 95th Annual Convention, Raleigh Convention Center, Raleigh, North Carolina <Not Available>. 2014-11-27 from http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p436203_index.html

Publication Type: Individual Paper
Review Method: Peer Reviewed
Abstract: Bluefield State College (BSC) is an HBCU in southern West Virginia, one of two such designated schools in the state. From its opening in 1897 through 1965, BSC transitioned from an all-black to a predominantly white school. Today, the institution serves a nearly 90 percent white student population. This paper examines some of the factors that influenced a rapid change in demographics at BSC between the Brown v. Board of Education decision in 1954 and 1965, by which time the school supported a majority white student population. But not only was the student population desegregated. Hiring of white administrators and faculty was taken to such an extreme that there were no black faculty members by 1998.
Changes at BSC have not occurred by accident, as adjustments in curriculum, housing, recruiting, hiring and funding reflect a plan to recreate a student and faculty population that is majority white. Since the geographic area from which the school draws its students has also seen a shift in racial demographics during the past fifty years, changes at BSC have been attributed to the overall population variations in southern West Virginia. However, closer examination of key incidents and trends between 1965 and 1998 reveal deeper causes for the resulting desegregation of an educational institution that was created to assist and improve economic conditions and potential professional opportunities for black students.


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