College Search

Report Abuse

Tuskegee University

Tuskegee University is a private, historically black university located in Tuskegee, Alabama, USA; established by Booker T. Washington. The campus has been designated as the Tuskegee Institute National Historic Site, a National Historic Landmark.


Kresge Center, 3rd Floor


Total Undergrad enrollment
Total Graduate enrollment
In State Tuition Fees
Out State Tuition Fees
ACT Score
SAT Score
Grade Point Average(GPA)
Male Female Ratio
Acceptance Rate
Student Faculty Ratio

Additional Information

College Type
Religious Affiliation
Campus Housing
Golden Tigers
Crimson And Old Gold

College History


Planning and establishment History class at Tuskegee, 1902 The school was founded on July 4, 1881 as the Tuskegee Normal School for Colored Teachers. It was part of the expansion of institutions of higher education for blacks in the South following the American Civil War, many founded by the northern American Missionary Association. A teachers' school was the dream of Lewis Adams, a former slave, and George W. Campbell, a former slaveholder, who shared a commitment to education of blacks. Despite lacking formal education, Adams could read, write and speak several languages. He was an experienced tinsmith, harness-maker and shoemaker and Prince Hall Freemason, an acknowledged leader of the African-American community in Macon County, Alabama. Adams and Campbell had secured $2,000 from the State of Alabama for teachers' salaries but nothing for land, buildings, or equipment. Adams, Thomas B. Dryer, and M.B. Swanson formed Tuskegee's first board of commissioners. They wrote to the Hampton Institute, a historically black college in Virginia, asking the school for a recommendation for their new school. Samuel C. Armstrong, the Hampton Principal and a former Union general, recommended the 25 year-old Booker T. Washington, an alumnus and teacher at Hampton. The young principal began classes for his new school in a run-down church and shanty. The following year in 1882, Washington bought a plantation, and over the years, the new campus buildings were constructed there, usually by students as part of their work-study. By the start of the 20th century, the university had almost 2300 acres. Based on his experience at the Hampton Institute, Washington intended to train students in skills, morals and religious life. Washington urged the teachers he trained "to return to the plantation districts and show the people there how to put new energy and new ideas into farming as well as into the intellectual and moral and religious life of the people." Washington's second wife Olivia A. Davidson, was instrumental to the success and helped raise funds for the school/ Gradually he developed a rural extension program, to take progressive ideas and training to those who could not come to the campus. Tuskegee alumni founded smaller schools and colleges throughout the South, and continued to stress teacher training. Booker T. Washington's leadership The Oaks, Booker T. Washington's home on the Tuskegee campus, c. 1906 Presidents of Tuskegee University Dr. Booker T. Washington 1881�1915 Dr. Robert Moton 1915�1935 Dr. Frederick Patterson 1935�1953 Dr. Luther Foster, Jr. 1953�1981 Dr. Benjamin Payton 1981�2010 Dr. Charlotte P. Morris 2010 Interim President � November 1, 2010 Dr. Gilbert L, Rochon 2010 � 2013 Dr. Matthew Jenkins 2013 Acting President � June 15, 2014 Dr. Brian L. Johnson 2014 � present A freed man, Washington sought a formal education and worked his way through Hampton Normal and Agricultural Institute (now Hampton University) and attended college at Wayland Seminary in Washington, DC (now Virginia Union University). He returned to Hampton as a teacher. Hired at Tuskegee, the new normal school (for the training of teachers) opened on July 4, 1881 in space borrowed from a church. The following year, Washington bought the grounds of a former plantation and over decades built the institute there. It has been designated a National Historic Landmark. The school expressed Washington's dedication to the pursuit of self-reliance. In addition to training teachers, he also taught the practical skills needed for his students to succeed at farming or other trades typical of the rural South, where most of them came from. He wanted his students to see labor as practical, but also as beautiful and dignified. As part of their work-study programs, students constructed most of the new buildings. Many students earned all or part of their expenses through the construction, agricultural, and domestic work associated with the campus, as they reared livestock and raised crops, as well as producing other goods. The continuing expansion of black education took place against a background of increased violence against blacks in the South after white Democrats regained power in state governments and imposed white supremacy in society. They instituted legal racial segregation and a variety of Jim Crow laws, after disfranchising most blacks by constitutional amendments and electoral rules from 1890�1964. Against this background, Washington's vision, as expressed in his "Atlanta Compromise" speech, became controversial and was challenged by new leaders, such as W.E.B. Du Bois, who argued that blacks should have opportunities for study in classical academic programs, as well as vocational institutes. He envisioned the rise of the "Talented Tenth" to lead African Americans. Washington gradually attracted notable scholars to Tuskegee, including the botanist George Washington Carver, one of the university's most renowned professors. 1881�1900 Perceived as a spokesman for black "industrial" education, Washington developed a network of wealthy American philanthropists who donated to the school, such as Andrew Carnegie, Collis P. Huntington, John D. Rockefeller, Henry Huttleston Rogers, George Eastman, and Elizabeth Milbank Anderson. An early champion of the concept of matching funds, Henry Rogers was a major anonymous contributor to Tuskegee and dozens of other black schools for more than 15 years. Thanks to recruitment efforts on the island and contacts with the U.S. military, Tuskeegee had a particularly large population of Afro-Cuban students during these years. Following small-scale recruitments prior to the 1898-99 school year, the university quickly gained popularity among ambitious Afro-Cubans. In the first three decades of the school�s existence, dozens of Afro-Cubans enrolled at Tuskegee each year, becoming the largest population of foreign students at the school. 1900�1915 Washington developed a major relationship with Julius Rosenwald, a self-made man who rose to the top of Sears, Roebuck and Company in Chicago, Illinois. He had long been concerned about the lack of educational resources for blacks, especially in the South. After meeting with Washington, Rosenwald agreed to serve on Tuskegee's Board of Directors. He also worked with Washington to stimulate funding to train teachers' schools such as Tuskegee and Hampton institutes. Beginning with a pilot program in 1912, Rosenwald created model rural schools and stimulated construction of new schools across the South. Tuskegee architects developed the model plans, and some students helped build the schools. Rosenwald created a fund but required communities to raise matching funds, to encourage local collaboration between blacks and whites. Rosenwald and Washington stimulated the construction and operation of more than 5,000 small community schools and supporting resources for the education of blacks throughout the rural the South into the 1930s. Despite his travels and widespread work, Washington continued as principal of Tuskegee. Concerned about the educator's health, Rosenwald encouraged him to slow his pace. In 1915, Washington died at the age of 59, as a result of congestive heart failure. At his death, Tuskegee's endowment exceeded US$1.5 million. He was buried on the campus near the chapel. Tuskegee campus, 1916. 1915�1940 Tuskegee University's George Washington Carver Museum The years after World War I challenged the basis of the Tuskegee Institute. Teaching was still seen as a critical calling, but southern society was changing rapidly. Attracted by the growth of industrial jobs in the North, including the rapid expansion of the Pennsylvania Railroad, and suffering job losses because of the boll weevil and increasing mechanization of agriculture, hundreds of thousands of rural blacks moved from the South to Northern and Midwestern industrial cities in the Great Migration. A total of 1.5 million moved during this period. In the South, industrialization was occurring in cities such as Birmingham, Alabama and other booming areas. The programs at Tuskegee, based on an agricultural economy, had to change. During and after World War II, migration to the North continued, with California added as a destination because of its defense industries. A total of 5 million blacks moved out of the South from 1940�1970. World War II and after Tuskegee University Chapel (1969) In 1941, in an effort to train black aviators, the U.S. Army Air Corps established a training program at Tuskegee Institute, using Moton Field, about 4 miles (6.4 km) away from the campus center. The graduates became known as the Tuskegee Airmen. The Tuskegee Airmen National Historic Site at Moton Field was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1998. Army, Air Force, and Navy have R.O.T.C. programs on campus today. Numerous presidents have visited Tuskegee, including Franklin D. Roosevelt. Eleanor Roosevelt was also interested in the Institute and its aeronautical school. In 1941 she visited Tuskegee Army Air Field and worked to have African Americans get the chance as pilots in the military. She corresponded with F.D. Patterson, the third president of the Tuskegee Institute, and frequently lent her support to programs.[8] The notable architect Paul Rudolph was commissioned in 1958 to produce a new campus master plan. In 1960 he was awarded, along with the partnership of John A. Welch and Louis Fry, the commission for a new chapel, perhaps the most significant modern building constructed in Alabama. The postwar decades were a time of continued expansion for Tuskegee, which added new programs and departments, adding graduate programs in several fields to reflect the rise of professional studies. For example, its School of Veterinary Medicine was added in 1944. Mechanical Engineering was added in 1953, and a four-year program in Architecture in 1957, with a six-year program in 1965. In 1985, Tuskegee Institute achieved university status and was renamed Tuskegee University.

College Specialty


Tuskegee University is a national, independent, and state-related institution of higher learning that is located in the State of Alabama. The University has distinctive strengths in the sciences, architecture, business, engineering, health, and other professions, all structured on solid foundations in the liberal arts. In addition, the University's programs focus on nurturing the development of high-order intellectual and moral qualities among students and stress the connection between education and the highly trained leadership Americans need in general, especially for the work force of the 21st Century and beyond. The results we seek are students whose technical, scientific, and professional prowess has been not only rigorously honed, but also sensitively oriented in ways that produce public-spirited graduates who are both competent and morally committed to public service with integrity and excellence.



Amelia Boynton Robinson 1927 International Civil and Human Rights Activist who was the first woman from Alabama to run United States Congress in 1964 (affectionately known as "Queen Mother Amelia") Robert Beck 1970s writer Iceberg Slim William A. Campbell 1937 a member of the Tuskegee Airmen who rose to the rank of Colonel Charles William Carpenter 1909 Baptist minister and Civil Rights activist Alice Marie Coachman 1942 American athlete who specialized in high jump, and was the first black woman to win an Olympic gold medal The Commodores 70s R&B band that met while attending Tuskegee George Williamson Crawford Lawyer and city official in New Haven, Connecticut Leon Crenshaw former NFL player General Oliver W. Dillard retired Army major general, Silver Star recipient in Korea - 1950 Ralph Ellison Scholar, Author of Invisible Man Milton C. Davis 1971 lawyer who researched and advocated for the pardon of Clarence Norris, the last surviving Scottsboro Boy Vera King Farris 1959 President of Richard Stockton College of New Jersey from 1983�2003 Drayton Florence Current NFL defensive back Isaac Fisher educator, taught at Hampton University and Fisk University Admiral Mack C. Gaston 1964 U.S. Navy 31 years. Surface War Officer, commanded two ships. Alexander N. Green U.S. Representative from Texas's 9th congressional district Harold Michael Harvey 1973 Scholar, lawyer, journalist, American Pundit Prize winner, author of "Paper Puzzle" Alexander N. Green U.S. Representative from Texas's 9th congressional district Marvalene Hughes president of Dillard University General Daniel "Chappie" James 1942 US Air Force Fighter pilot, who in 1975 became the first African American to reach the rank of four star General. Lonnie Johnson (inventor) Inventor of the Super Soaker and former NASA aerospace engineer Ken Jordan former NFL player Tom Joyner 1971 American radio host whose daily program, The Tom Joyner Morning Show, is syndicated across the United States and heard by over 10 million radio listeners. John A. Lankford 20th Century Architect Marion Mann 1940 Former Dean of the College of Medicine at Howard University and US Army Brigadier General (retired) Claude McKay 1912 Jamaican writer and poet, Harlem Renaissance Leo Morton 1968 Chancellor, University of Missouri at Kansas City Albert Murray 1939 Literary and jazz critic, novelist and biographer Ray Nagin 1978 Former mayor of New Orleans, Louisiana Gertrude Nelson 1929 Military, civilian, and American Red Cross nurse and college administrator from Louisiana Dimitri Patterson Current NFL player Dr. Dorothy Richey 1965 First woman appointed head of athletics at a Co-educational College or University in the United States at Chicago State University in 1975 Dr. Ptolemy A. Reid 1955 Prime Minister of Guyana (1980�1984) Lionel Richie R&B singer, Grammy Award winner Lawrence E. Roberts a member of the Tuskegee Airmen and a colonel in The United States Air Force George C. Royal 1943 microbiologist who is currently professor emeritus at Howard University Roderick Royal President of the Birmingham City Council Herman J. Russell 1953 Founder and former President & CEO of H. J. Russell Construction Co., the largest minority owned construction company in the nation Betty Shabazz wife of Malcolm X Jake Simmons Jr. 1919 Oil broker and civil rights advocate Danielle Spencer Television actress, best known as Dee from the 1970s TV show, What's Happening!! McCants Stewart 1896 lawyer, first African-American to practice law in Oregon Frank Walker Current NFL defensive back Keenan Ivory Wayans Actor, comedian and television producer Jack Whitten abstract painter Dr. David Wilson president of Morgan State University Roosevelt Williams (gridiron football) 2000 former NFL player on the Chicago Bears, Cleveland Browns, New York Jets Ken Woodard former NFL player Elizabeth Evelyn Wright educator and humanitarian, founder of Voorhees College Dr. St. Aubyn Bartlett 1989 State Minister Ministry of National Security (Jamaica) June 2011 � November 2011 Nick J. Mosby 2002 Baltimore City Councilman



Rural 5,000 Acres