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Cheyney University

Brief Description:

Cheyney University of Pennsylvania  

Founded in 1837, Cheyney University is America’s oldest historically Black institution of higher education. Today it leverages that rich history of providing access to higher education for all students by producing visionary leaders and responsible citizens. Cheyney graduates are successful, talented individuals, and some of the most well-known include 60 Minutes journalist, Ed Bradley, and NFL defensive back, Andre Waters. Cheyney University is in the business of developing human potential and talent and does so through an intellectually challenging environment and personal attention to every studenta hallmark of the Cheyney experience.

Visit Cheyney University anniversary website at 


Mission Statement:

175th Cheyney Anniversary logoThe mission of Cheyney University of Pennsylvania is to prepare confident, competent, reflective, visionary leaders and responsible citizens. We uphold our tradition of academic excellence as we maintain our historical commitment to opportunity and access for students of diverse backgrounds. Cheyney University provides a nurturing, intellectually challenging and socially enriching environment.



President's Quote:

This year, Cheyney University of Pennsylvania celebrates its 175th Anniversary. We are so grateful to all of those who have made it possible for the university to reach this important milestone. As you may already know, Cheyney University currently enrolls about 1,500 students, and this small liberal arts institution has made, and continues to make, significant contributions to the Commonwealth, the region and to America. We are in the midst of the most creative time at Cheyney University. As we celebrate our 175th anniversary, and with the continued support of our constituents, the Cheyney University brand of access, opportunity and excellence will be recognized nationwide as the oldest HBCU in America! We are very proud of our legacy.

Michelle Howard-Vital, President


Notable Alumni:

Some of the individuals who have graduated from Cheyney University and distinguished themselves in the last three centuries include the late Ed Bradley, CBS 60 Minutes journalist (who often mentioned his years as a student at Cheyney University); Robert W. Bogle, Philadelphia Tribune President and CEO; and Robert Traynham, CN8 political analyst. Other distinguished members of the university community include Fannie Jackson Coppin, the first African-American woman principal in the nation; Octavius Catto, activist; and Julian Abele, African-American architect for the Philadelphia Art Museum and Duke University Chapel, just to name a few.


"I chose Cheyney University because it was very important for me to graduate from a HBCU. Also because Cheyney's tuition was affordable and it has a good location...not too far from Philly." Basil Akbar Stewart, Freshman

"I transferred to Cheyney University from a predominantly white university. I chose to continue my education at Cheyney University because I found the atmosphere at Cheyney to be more welcoming and approachable than my previous institution. Also, the opportunities provided by the Keystone Honors Program for scholarship, graduate school placement, and academic excellence will look great as I move forward in my professional career." — Yasheaka Oakley, Senior


  • Kellee Edmonds
    Vice President of Communications and Public Relations
    (202) 478-4662