How HBCUs Contributed to the 1940s War Effort

The efforts of the Tuskegee Airmen in World War II are well known. The airmen trained and took classes on the campus of what was then the Tuskegee Institute in Alabama.

But many other HBCUs took part in the war effort as well. Here is a U.S. government video from the era detailing the contributions to the war efforts by students and faculty at several Black colleges and universities.

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  1. This is a good summary of a hitherto little publicized aspect of the war effort. Little attention has been given to the specialized training programs at Black colleges. The 320th College Training Detachment (CTD) at Tuskegee was a vital segment of training for most of the Red Tail Pilots who were overseas when WWII ended in Europe. I received my first 10 hours of flight time while a student in CTD.

    Little is also known of the widespread involvement of Blacks throughout a broad spectrum of the military establishment during and before WWII. This was partially brought out in a series of seminars at the Carlisle Barracks in the 1980s.

  2. As a retired military officer, I truly appreicate viewing this film. A part of history that many, today, disregard or overlook concerning HBCU. By the way, I am a HBCU product.

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