A federal lawsuit was filed Wednesday claiming that Cheyney University, a historically black state college, is being left out in the cold due to racism.
“We are seeking parity through equity, to seek a level playing field so we can compete with the 13 traditionally white state institutions,” explained attorney Michael Coard, a Cheyney alum who is filing the lawsuit.
Coard said the school needs funding to attract new students.
“If you create the type of programs young people are interested in and you have them at Cheyney, then you wouldn’t have the problems with low student enrollment and high budget deficit,” he said.
Coard mentioned criminal justice, nursing programs and computer technology programs as among the goals of Cheyney.
Kenn Marshall, spokesman for the state system of higher education, said the state is working to improve Cheyney.
“The university is developing a new academic plan that will ensure students have access to relevant programs,” Marshall said via email. “We are identifying other areas for enhancement within the university such as the university’s business and student support services; facilities (including student housing); and technology infrastructure.”
Visit HeedingCheyneysCall.org, the webpage of the alumni group filing the lawsuit, for more information on the suit.