Is FAMU deserving of its rank as No.1 public HBCU?

FAMU’s Office of Communication. Photo courtesy:

Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University maintained its rank as the No.1 public HBCU and has increased to No.103 among national public universities.

This should’ve been a cause for celebration across the board for students, faculty and staff, but in light of past incidents that occurred this year, some Rattlers found themselves unable to join in on the momentous occasion. 

According to U.S News & World Report, historically Black colleges are measured by the quality of the undergraduate education. Something from the eyes of some students seems to be severely lacking this semester.

Taylor Harten, a second-year business administration student, opened up about her feelings regarding FAMU’s ranking. 

“I do love my HBCU but I don’t believe we deserve to be the No.1 Public HBCU, it’s good for the looks and all of that… but the university doesn’t treat us like this is the No.1 Public HBCU and I just have to speak up,” Harten said.

Harten was one of the hundreds of students who had to relocate back in August due to pest infestation at Palmetto Phase 3 Apartments. During that time, Harten shared she felt there wasn’t a concrete plan put in place and didn’t feel it was fair that she and other students who were paying out of pocket to come to school, to get an education, and had to go through what they did.

Agreeing with her friends’ sentiments, second-year Asha Wassem believes that FAMU could work on better administration, organization, and money allocation. Wassem also believes it’s not the school itself that makes FAMU No.1 but its students. 

“What I think makes us the No.1 Public HBCU would honestly have to be the fight that our students have to be able to deal with the bad advisement, to deal with the financial struggles that we go through and still come out and get A’s and B’s in our classes and leave this institution and do great for our college that’s what I think makes us the No.1 HBCU but not anything that’s internal,” Wassem said.

It would be an understatement to say that this semester has been a trying one for FAMU and its students. But more than anything, the spirit of FAMU to strike back amidst the trials of adversaries is undeniably one of the things that makes FAMU No. 1.