It must be noted that the downward trend in Black student graduation rates at HBCUs has occurred during a period of extreme economic difficulty. Many publicly operated HBCUs have seen a decline in state appropriations and cutbacks in state financial aid for college students. Private HBCUs have also faced cutbacks and difficulty in fundraising. This undoubtedly is reflected in lower student graduation rates. Prior research has shown that the major reason that Black students drop out of college is money. Thus, cuts in financial aid programs at HBCUs undoubtedly have contributed significantly to the downward trend in Black student graduation rates at these schools.