Exclusive: April Ryan Asks Obama If African Leader Initiative Will Help HBCUs

Exclusive: April Ryan Asks Obama If African Leader Initiative Will Help HBCUs

 American Urban Radio Networks White House Correspondent April Ryan asked President Obama if his new African leaders initiative will assist troubled historically black colleges. Ryan’s entire exclusive with the President can be heard here. 

In her first question to President Obama, Ryan asks. “What are your hopes once you touch down in South Africa as it deals with the youth population, especially with the HBCUs in America — they are having problems financially — are you doing something that is going to go back and fourth with them?” Ryan asked.  The question was asked during an exclusive interview on Air Force One over South Africa.  Hear Ryan’s question on HBCU’s to President Obama, and his answer, below:

Today, St. Paul’s Colllege, a HBCU established 125 years ago in 1888, will close its doors for good in Lawrenceville, Virginia.  The school had been plagued by financial problems for the last few years. The White House Initiative on HIstorically Black Colleges and Universities has been without a permanent executive director of the White House Initiative on Historically Black Colleges and Universities since the departure of John S. Wilson in December 2012.  Last Friday, NPR’s Gene Demby did a piece called Are HBCUs In Trouble? An Evergreen Question.

April Ryan interviews the President

On Saturday, President Obama announced a Washington fellowship for African youth leaders.  | read White House release here |
The initiative will expose young African leaders to American workplace practices and focus on emerging young people between 25 and 35.

“Beginning in 2014, each year the United States will bring 500 of Africa’s most promising young leaders to U.S. universities for training in public management and administration; business and entrepreneurship; and civic leadership.  Training in each of these sectors will focus on the skills young African leaders need to run better ministries, start and grow businesses, and serve their communities,” the White House announcement read.

Ryan’s entire interview can be heard here