The U.S. Department of Education has announced grants to four historically Black colleges and universities that were disrupted by bomb threats last year. The funds are part of the Project School Emergency Response to Violence program. Project SERV funds short-term education-related services for local educational agencies and institutions of higher education to help them recover from a violent or traumatic event in which the learning environment has been disrupted.
“The bomb threats last year that targeted several historically Black colleges and universities traumatized their campus communities, disrupted learning, and drained resources by prompting costly campus lockdowns, class cancellations, and law enforcement activities,” said U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona. “The Biden-Harris administration will always stand by HBCUs and unequivocally condemn racist efforts to terrorize Black students and educators and deprive them of their right to safe, welcoming, and nurturing environments for teaching and learning.”
Texas Southern University in Houston, Texas was awarded $191,962; Delaware State University in Dover, Delaware was awarded $217,000; Claflin University in Orangeburg, South Carolina was awarded $440,000 and Howard University in Washington, D.C. was awarded $203,000.
Texas Southern University will use the funds to provide access to in-person and tele-mental health services for one year.
Delaware State University will develop a Mental Health First Aid Education Program. The university will also pay for overtime expenses for counselors, social workers, and law enforcement officers to help address safety and health concerns.
Claflin University will use its funds to hire a licensed clinical social worker, as well as to support training and other programs to address stress, anxiety, and safety on campus.
Howard University will use its grant to hire two case managers who will be responsible for conducting wellness visits and contacting families on an as-needed basis related to student wellness concerns.