On February 25, 1837, Cheyney University of Pennsylvania became the nation’s first Historically Black College and University (HBCU). The University was established through the bequest of Richard Humphreys, a Quaker philanthropist who bequeathed $10,000 — one-tenth of his estate — to design and establish a school to educate people of African descent and prepare them as teachers.
Cheyney University boasts more than 30,000 graduates. Well-known alumni include the late Ed Bradley, a correspondent for the CBS program “60 Minutes;”
Pedro Rivera, Pennsylvania Secretary of Education;
Robert W. Bogle, publisher and CEO of the Philadelphia Tribune, the oldest newspaper continuously owned and operated by an African American;
Dr. Audrey F. Bronson, a member of the PA State System of Higher Education’s Board of Governors, ordained minister and retired educator;
Dr. Gladys Styles Johnston, former Chancellor of the University of Nebraska at Kearney; Thaddeus Kirkland, State Representative and Mayor of Chester, PA;
and the late Bayard Rustin, a prominent civil rights activist.