Texas Southern University president talks hosting third presidential debate

Dr. Austin A. Lane, president of Texas Southern University, discusses his university and the connection to key issues pertinent to Democrats.
4:36 | 09/12/19

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Transcript for Texas Southern University president talks hosting third presidential debate
We're joined now. By the president of Texas Southern University doctor Ross Olympics are ominous sign Eric Cantor. Thank you so much for being here and then hope you're having a good stay here in Texas and most importantly it's issue it. You guys say so hospitable you know I would ask you start by asking you about what I heard from so many of your students and on the importance of these types of schools. Are right now I heard the word of refuge. And a lot. Just surprise you. Not at all you know we do a really good job in making sure our students feel at home like most states BC used you'll hear students like you heard only. Piece just now that are really connected. They feel appreciated they feel like they have a voice. And they really excel when they get here and go off to do great things and so we're just excited. The to get the opportunity to be here with ABC and to be in the mix and and to really learn from the professionals like you. Yet what do you think they're going to. Feel when they walk through these doors and be there are days their campus transform. A few of them have already said when you leave we need to bring it back and haven't for commenced and that's not gonna happen. Don't get smaller and that's right this is fantastic when I came in yesterday I was blown way. I couldn't believe it was still are Jim and art AD him on joked we similar got a lot of work to do to make sure that we spruce it up a little bit once you want to leave. Asking you know about the financial struggles that a lot of schools yes you have experienced HBC news in the past. Decade or so how important. It is federal funding. Two keeping these schools sustainable fine of over 500 million dollars understand each year in the is positive for HBC news. Extremely important we just got back this week from the national conference for HBC news in DC. The agenda release and 10 with his how to weave pulled down more federal dollars from those departments where this Department of Education defense transportation you name it and so. How to we receive more of those dollars those federal dollars and re search and in grants and so. That's sergeant a lot of based PC use have not been that successful in doing that we we have probably more than some others but. Still more to do. And a lot of the candidates we may hear tonight given. We're where we are have to. Floated some pretty good bullpen slammed satisfy an interagency use people who judge struck talking about 25 billion dollars Elizabeth Ward fifty billion dollars. What do you think of of those numbers are you hear about. I realistic he you know I easily focus on the moaning and not the message and in the most importantly the action. And so a lot of unknown now it's a lot of talk about you know what they'd like to do in that sounds great but. We gave that to translate into real dollars far institutions and so that's simply don't get too excited when I hear them you know try to paws out a little bit and just make sure that they really understand the need that exists for HB CUs and most importantly Texas southern. What else are you hoping to see on the State's tonight. You know I'm I'm hoping to really see some some real good dialogue between the the candidates and then a tip they really understand the issues that impact our students most importantly in the in our community. Not only here in Houston but across the country across the world and so I'm hoping to really see that we have be nonpartisan so. I have to sit back to mention too excited or do you know we left derived but. I am excited that it is here and and this venues as phenomenal have that kind of discussion. We've we've heard so much from the students past few days doctor Ling about issues important to them and we'll hear some more after this conversation. Health care immigration and gun reform and gun safety control very important to them. Also a lot of conversation as we just heard about the rise of white supremacy in the country right now sure racism. Minority communities feeling under pressure and really looking into a new leader. To help us out of that what what do you make of this of the climate right now when it comes to race in this country and we think we need. Well you know I think we need some understanding. And I think we need some empathy. On both sides and I think we need to have the ability to work together. And doing away that's going to benefit. Our communities and in our state. Well world. And for students to have this kind of experience to hear an up close and personal and here. Really a couple of sides is very important as they go off to to become who they are going to come and they can help that. Changing and don't change the world. Such levels here and I thanks for president and governor like his real time when us. Here's Erin that.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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