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Fri, 04.25.1873

The University of Arkansas Pine-Bluff is Founded

*On this date in 1873, The University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff (UAPB) was founded.  This is a public Historically Black College and University (HBCU).  

Located in Pine Bluff, Arkansas, it is the second-oldest public institution in the state of Arkansas. UAPB is a member school of the University of Arkansas System and Thurgood Marshall College Fund.  Authorized by the Reconstruction-era legislature as the Branch Normal College and opened in 1875 with Joseph Carter Corbin principal. It was nominally part of the "normal" (education) department of Arkansas Industrial University, later the University of Arkansas. It was operated separately as part of a compromise to get a college for Black students, as the state maintained racial segregation well into the 20th century.

It later was designated as a land-grant college under the 1890 federal amendments to Morrill Land-Grant Acts. As Congress had originally established the land grant colleges to provide education to all qualified students in a state, in 1890 it required states maintaining segregated systems to establish a separate land-grant university for Blacks as well as whites.  In 1927, the school severed its ties with the University of Arkansas and became Arkansas Agricultural, Mechanical & Normal College (Arkansas AM&N). It moved to its current campus location in 1929. Nearly 50 years later, in 1972, Arkansas AM&N re-joined what is now the University of Arkansas System. As a full-fledged campus with graduate study departments, it gained its current name and university status in the process. 

Since 1988, the university has gained recognition as a leading research institution in aquaculture studies, offering the state's only comprehensive program in this field. It supports a growing regional industry throughout the Mid-South (according to the school, aquaculture is a $167 million industry in Arkansas alone and worth approximately $1.2 billion in the Mississippi Delta region). Recently the program was enhanced by the addition of an Aquaculture/Fisheries PhD program.  The University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff is the oldest and largest HBCU in Arkansas.   Notable Allumni include chemist, Samuel Massie.

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