Higher Education Grants or Gifts of Interest to African Americans

Here is this week’s news of grants or gifts to historically Black colleges and universities or for programs of particular interest to African Americans in higher education.

Cornell University has received a $750,000 grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities to support the further development of the Freedom on the Move database. The database collects and compiles fugitive slave advertisements from 18th- and 19th-century U.S. newspapers. Launched in 2014, the database provides essential primary documentation for the study of slavery and the resistance of self-liberating people in the United States. It now includes more than 30,000 advertisements.

Tennessee State University, Jackson State University, Mississippi Valley State University, and LeMoyne-Owen College will receive a total of $5 million from FedEx Corporation. The company will provide funds to each college to help them prepare students for the workforce beyond education. Part of the pledge will also offer support to help students, faculty, and staff who have suffered economic impact from the coronavirus pandemic.

The Kelley School of Business at Indiana University received a $1 million gift from alumni Derica Rice and Robin Nelson-Rice. The funds will be used to support students in the MBA program at the Kelley School and fellows of the Consortium for Graduate Study in Management. Better known as The Consortium, the national organization enhances diversity in business education through merit-based support and mentoring for African American, Hispanic, and Native American students.

Philander Smith College, the historically Black educational institution in Little Rock, Arkansas, received a $250,000 grant from The Methodist Foundation for Arkansas to fund programs to develop and graduate students in allied health professions as well as to create innovative strategies to decrease health disparities across the state.

Historically Black Howard University in Washington, D.C. received a six-figure donation from alumna Lisa Charles Lewis to establish an endowed scholarship fund for the Howard University College of Nursing and Allied Health Sciences. The scholarship will honor her mother Shirley Smith Charles who worked at the Howard University Hospital for 24 years, culminating her service as manager of the ambulatory care clinic in 2002.

Diageo, a global beverage leader with brands such as Guinness beer, Johnnie Walker whiskies, and Smirnoff vodka, is committing $10 million to support 25 Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) and creating permanent endowed funds to provide financial aid grants anticipated to benefit thousands of talented students in need. The program will provide funding to support students at the following institutions: Alabama A&M University, Alabama State University, Bowie State University, Clark Atlanta University, Delaware State University, Dillard University, Fisk University, Fort Valley State University, Florida A&M University, Grambling State University, Hampton University, Harris-Stowe State University, Howard University, Jackson State University, Kentucky State University, Morehouse College, Morgan State University, Norfolk State University, North Carolina A&T University, North Carolina Central University, Tennessee State University, Tuskegee University, University of Virgin Islands, Winston-Salem State University, and Xavier University.

Hampton University, the historically Black educational institution in Virginia, received a donation of equipment and software valued at $554,000 from Keysight Technologies Inc. The donated equipment and software will assist the uniersity’s School of Engineering and Technology in efforts to update, upgrade, and create more innovative laboratory spaces.

Historically Black Texas Southern University has been awarded funding totaling $4.75 million from the Houston Endowment for several academic, arts, and social justice initiatives. Grants were awarded to the university’s Center for Justice Research, the University Museum, the Earl Carl Institute, and for the establishment of the Robert D. Bullard Center for Environmental and Climate Justice.

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