Who We Are

"A mind is a terrible thing to waste." ®

For more than seven decades, this principle has remained at the heart of UNCF, enabling us to raise more than $5 billion and help more than 500,000 students and counting not just attend college, but thrive, graduate and become leaders.

We do this in three ways: By awarding more than 10,000 students scholarships, worth more than $100 million, each year. By providing financial support to 37 historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs). And by serving as the nation's leading advocate for the importance of minority education and community engagement.

This three-pronged approach is powerful: Since our founding in 1944, we've helped to more than double the number of minorities attending college. The six-year graduation rate for UNCF African American scholarship recipient is 70%. This is 11% higher than the national average and 31% higher than the national average for all African Americans.


UNCF has helped more than 500,000 students earn their college degrees since its founding.

UNCF is the nation's largest private scholarship provider to minority group members. Each year, we award more than $100 million in scholarships to students attending more than 1,100 schools across the country, including our prestigious network of 37 HBCUs.

We also manage a variety of scholarship programs, such as the Fund II Foundation UNCF STEM Scholars Program, UNCF/Koch Scholars Program, K-12 Education Fellowship and the Frederick Douglass Bicentennial Scholarship Program.

Member HBCUs

Thirty-seven historically black colleges and universities belong to the UNCF network of member institutions. UNCF provides these colleges and universities with a range of support that enables them to keep their academic programs strong and their tuitions affordable. As a result of this support, member institutions educate more than 60,000 students each year and have produced more than 450,000 graduates with the help of UNCF. The economic impact of member institutions extends beyond just the students they educate. UNCF recently commissioned a landmark study to measure this impact; HBCUs Make America Strong: The Positive Economic Impact of Historically Black Colleges and Universities details the individual impacts each institution has on its communities. 

Advocacy for Students Reaching College and in College

To make sure that the needs of students are on the agenda when Washington policymakers debate education policy and set federal budgets, UNCF is one of the most prominent education advocates in the nation's capital. And to ensure that students get the kindergarten-through-high-school education they need to prepare them for college success, UNCF helps communities around the country engage in improving the schools their children attend.