GREENVILLE, SC (WSPA) – South Carolina Congressman James “Jim” Clyburn was in the Upstate on Tuesday night at a fundraiser reception honoring his late wife, Dr. Emily Clyburn.

The event was put on by Clinton College and Attorney Fletcher N. Smith Jr.

In addition to education, Congressman Clyburn also spoke to 7News after the event, on a wide range of topics, including the recent Supreme Court decision on abortion and the January 6th hearings.

As things are steadily on the rise across the United States, Congressman Clyburn is trying to lighten the burden for many students attending Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) in the state.

The James E. Clyburn Scholarship and Research Foundation has established a scholarship to honor his wife, to support the eight HBCU’s in South Carolina.

Congressman Clyburn said when his wife was sick, she told him she wanted him to make sure nothing happened to certain scholarships.

“And this tonight was in honor of my late wife who got her bachelors from South Carolina State,” he said.

“These young people are challenged in ways we never were and we need to use the benefit of our experiences to help make the system work for them,” Rep. Clyburn said. “Student loan debt is now out distancing credit card debit, and that is not a good thing, and we need to make education affordable.”

“There are eight HBCU’s – Historical Black Colleges and Universities – here in South Carolina, and I think it’s important for people to know not just that the universities exist, but what the values of those schools are. those values are very very important to the state and the future of this great country,” Clyburn said.

The presidents of South Carolina State University and Clinton College said these efforts are appreciated.

“What this is for all of our students in South Carolina is a huge win for all of us,” said Col. Alexander Conyers, President of SC State. “We just heard some of the staggering numbers on students loans and I will tell you everyday our students continue to face challenges, but with assistance from Congressman Clyburn, and the legacy of his late wife– our students continue to rise to the challenge, and beat the odds, and go on to do great things.”

“I want to thank Congressman Clyburn for his leadership. He has been a strong advocate for all of our HBCUs,” said Dr. Lester McCorn, President of Clinton College.

While Congressman Clyburn is working to make education accessible and affordable for everyone, he’s also fighting for other things.

“I think that we can do some stuff to codify Roe v. Wade. Now I have to say this a lot, we have already passed legislation in the House of Representatives to codify Roe v. Wade. So, it’s not about the congress, it’s about the Senate. The Senate has not moved on it. We sent that bill to the Senate and I would hope people would tend to concentrate on trying to get the senate to respond. The House already has,” Congressman Clyburn said.

“I’m the father of three daughters and I do believe that we have to do everything that we can to make sure that the women be treated as equitably when it comes to men. So, what the Supreme Court did here does great violence to equity in this country.” Congressman Clyburn said.

Congressman Clyburn also weighed in on the January 6th hearings going on now.

“We know the truth now, hopefully it will set us free as a country,” Clyburn said.

At the event on Tuesday night, leaders with Clyburn’s foundation said they raised close to $20,000 for HBCUs in the state at the event.