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Morgan State and Tennessee State are just the latest historically black colleges and universities to be classified as academic institutions with “high research activity.”

The 2018 update of the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education, a framework for describing the diversity of U.S. colleges and universities, was released last December.

The recent upgrade includes institutions that conferred 30 or more doctorates, at least 20 “research/scholarship” doctorates, and reported at least $5 million in research expenditures.

“The elevation to R2 ranking is exciting  news for Morgan,” said President David Wilson in a statement.  “I thank our dedicated faculty, administrators and graduate students for achieving it, by securing funding to conduct unprecedented levels of research.”

Tennessee State University President Glenda Glover broke the good news at a Faculty and Staff Institute for the spring semester.

“These are exciting times as we create our future,” said Glover. “I’m proud to serve as president of TSU.”

Tennessee State officials say the upgrade from R3 (moderate research activity) to R2 (higher research activity) will make the university more competitive.

“There’s a recognition we’re doing good scholarly research that will support academic endeavors,” said Dr. Lesia Crumpton-Young, vice president for research and institutional advancement. “I think it will help raise our reputation, our visibility.”

Eleven HBCUs now have an R2 designation. They include those with ABET-accredited colleges and Ph.D. programs in Science and Engineering:

  • Morgan State University
  • Tennessee State University
  • Florida A&M University
  • Howard University
  • Jackson State University
  • North Carolina A&T University

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