The HBCU Wilberforce University, located in Ohio, announced this week that it is canceling the debt for its 2020 and 2021 graduates.
During recent commencement exercises, President Elfred Anthony Pinkard announced to the 2020 and 2021 new alumni that their debt and other debt owed to the university by students from 2020 and 2021 has been settled and carries a zero balance.
In total, the amount of debt cleared from all Wilberforce students enrolled in 2020 and 2021 exceeds $375,000.
According to the university, the money used to pay off the debt was resourced from various scholarships and other institutional funding to help students from last year’s spring and fall semesters and spring 2021 with their higher education finances.
“Last spring, during the initial COVID 19 pandemic outbreak, all Wilberforce students were relieved of financial pressure through the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF), set up through the CARES Act, which provided emergency financial aid for colleges and universities,” the press release issued by the university states. “This specifically helped students whose bursar office balance would have prohibited them from registering for the upcoming fall classes.”
“As these graduates begin their lives as responsible adults, we are honored to be able to give them a fresh start by relieving their student debt to the university,” Dr. Elfred Anthony Pinkard, the 22nd President, Wilberforce University stated.