A Maryland delegate wants to give the state's historically Black colleges and universities greater independence by separating their governance from the University System of Maryland.
The proposal, if passed by the General Assembly, would grant autonomy to the University of Maryland Eastern Shore, Bowie State University and Coppin State University.
Delegate Julian Ivey, D-Prince George's County, said his bill would help correct funding disparities among state institutions. The HBCUs would remain publicly funded, but would have greater individual control, he said.
Ivey said his proposal would give Bowie State, Coppin State and UMES their own Boards of Regents, so that university leaders answer to "individuals who have attended HBCUs, who are invested in HBCUs."
"That would make it easier for presidents to advocate effectively for what the university actually needs, rather than just taking what the Board of Regents is willing to give them," Ivey said.
Each of the new Boards of Regents would have diversity goals, including a chair who attended an HBCU, at least five members who attended HBCUs, and a majority of board members who are Black.