Shaw students searching for tuition funds
Posted August 5, 2015
Shaw University’s new president, Tashni Dubroy, is changing the way financial aid is distributed.
Citing declining enrollment, Dubroy said Shaw can no longer afford tuition discounts. She wants to more evenly spread grant money to include students in programs that traditionally haven’t received much aid.
To this point, band members received $525,000 in grant funds yearly, and the football team received $550,000.
Students with high grade-point averages received no scholarships, and students in the Honors College received only $250 each for books, according to Dubroy.
She said academically gifted students deserve financial support, too, and that's why she's redistributing the grant funds.
Band members said they're bothered by the short notice, coming a week before classes start.
“That scholarship is something we work for,” Mizany Gibbs, a Shaw band member, said. ”As you can see, we’re here at 5:45 in the morning until midnight. We’re the first to come in to school and the last to leave.”
Dubroy said fundraising efforts are underway to replace the tuition grants with private money.
“That’s the only purpose of being at a university at the end of the day,” Abiodun Busuyi, a Shaw graduate student, said. “The sole purpose is to academically perform well.”
Members of the band staged a protest against the tuition change on Tuesday.
Junior Sonjia Colson, a band member and honors college student, said education is always the first priority.
"First comes education," Colson said. "That's something my parents always instilled in me—education comes first."
Each student had received a $7,500 reduction in yearly tuition. That figure has now been cut to $3,000.
Shaw band director Charlie Brown told WRAL News that he lost 33 students when this change was announced.
Dubroy said the entire Shaw family—including students—needs to participate in fundraising for their programs. She invited the protesters back on Friday if they're still not happy with their aid packages.