Bethune-Cookman University

Est. 1904
Daytona Beach, FL

UNCF Member Institution
Transformation Partner since 2022


Motto: “Enter to Learn, Depart to Serve”
Website: cookman.edu

Every learner enters with curiosity, departs with a growth mindset, competitively competent, committed to lifelong learning and ready to use the gifts, talents and experiences to selflessly change the world for the better.

Dr. Lawrence M. Drake President, Bethune-Cookman University

On October 3, 1904, an exceptional young Black woman, Mary McLeod Bethune, opened the Daytona Literary and Industrial Training School for Negro Girls—what would become Bethune-Cookman University—with $1.50, faith in God and five little girls, along with Dr. Bethune’s son, Albert.

Dr. Bethune became a national and international figure with a long list of notable accomplishments, including counseling U.S. presidents, playing a role in the founding of the United Nations, and creating an influential African American women’s organization. She also helped found the United Negro College Fund, of which Bethune-Cookman was a charter member. The University was a crowning achievement in her storied career.

Over the years, Bethune-Cookman grew steadily, adding academic programs and expanding its physical plant. Since 1943, Bethune-Cookman University (B-CU) has graduated more than 19,000 students. Alumni work in various fields, including the arts, business, education, government, sciences, and religion. B-CU has received national recognition for its intercollegiate athletic programs and instrumental and choral groups. In 2007 Bethune-Cookman achieved university status, adding a graduate program in transformational leadership to its offerings.

Facilitated through the Institute for Capacity Building, Bethune-Cookman is now a UNCF cohort member in the HBCU Transformation Project, a first-of-its-kind effort to improve student enrollment, graduate success, and institutional effectiveness rates at Historically Black Colleges and Universities.

I fulfill the promise of Black higher education by helping to make the university financially stable.

John PIttman
Vice President for Fiscal Affairs and CFO
An Online Hub for Learning and Community Building

An Online Hub for Learning and Community Building

The United Negro College Fund is launching a new online learning platform where HBCU students and scholars at different institutions across the country can learn and connect.

Anthology Works to Strengthen Network for HBCUs

Anthology Works to Strengthen Network for HBCUs

Supporting student success outcomes requires a culture of data fluency. ICB and Anthology partner on HBCU Data and Analytics Credential.

Black Educators and Leaders Gather in Atlanta for UNCF’s UNITE 2022

Black Educators and Leaders Gather in Atlanta for UNCF’s UNITE 2022

UNCF convened for UNITE 2022, the organization’s summit for students, educators and professional stakeholders at HBCUs.

Coming Together for HBCU Student Success Excellence

Coming Together for HBCU Student Success Excellence

UNCF and InsideTrack partners to help students return to school in the midst of the pandemic. A new case study reveals lessons learned.

Dr. Rochelle Ford Named Next President of Dillard University

Dr. Rochelle Ford Named Next President of Dillard University

Dr. Ford will become the next president of Dillard University, a historically Black university in New Orleans. Ford is currently the dean of Elon University's School of Communications.

Forgotten Leaders – How HBCUs and PBIs Can Amplify Black Women’s Roles in Social Justice Movements

Forgotten Leaders – How HBCUs and PBIs Can Amplify Black Women’s Roles in Social Justice Movements

UNCF’s Executive Leadership Institute gatherings, focused on how HBCUs and PBIs can support women advocates by putting more women in positions of leadership.

Good News for HBCUs

Good News for HBCUs

For decades, Black colleges have been portrayed as deficient. What changed?

HBCU aims to achieve its goal of enrolling 10,000 students well ahead of schedule

HBCU aims to achieve its goal of enrolling 10,000 students well ahead of schedule

Morgan State University has announced historic enrollment figures for a second consecutive year.

HBCU Transformation Project Launched with $60 Million

HBCU Transformation Project Launched with $60 Million

The HBCU Transformation Project aims to increase HBCU health and sustainability, improve student outcomes in retention and graduation rates, expand enrollment, and bolster capacity building with faculty and staff.

ICB and Partners Reflect on Career Pathways Initiative

ICB and Partners Reflect on Career Pathways Initiative

UNCF and partners reflected on the successes of the Career Pathways Initiative (CPI) funded by a $50 million Lilly Endowment investment that helps HBCUs and PBIs strengthen institutional career placement outcomes.

Innovative Partnerships with Community Development Financial Institutions

Innovative Partnerships with Community Development Financial Institutions

CDFIs like Reinvestment Fund are positioned to connect the dots between community partners, financial institutions and policymakers to help drive healthy and equitable communities.

It’s time to uplift Black cities by investing in HBCUs

It’s time to uplift Black cities by investing in HBCUs

If HBCUs are to realize their full potential as a driver of economic and community development, their value and impact must be recognized by the capital markets.