Expanding Educational Opportunity
In 1862 Congress passed the Morrill Land-Grant College Act. It provided federal funding through a land-grant system to foster a new form of agricultural and technical education throughout the United States. While that original act boosted the farming sector of the economy and provided opportunity to rural and working- class citizens, later acts in 1890 and 1994 explicitly extended the benefits of the land-grant system to historically African American and American Indian schools. Today, land-grant institutions exist in every state in the country.