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.

SPIE, the international society for optics and photonics, and the IBM-HBCU Quantum Center have selected a group of researchers and educators at historically Black Tuskegee University in Albama as this year’s recipient of the IBM-SPIE HBCU Faculty Accelerator Award in Quantum Optics and Photonics. The Tuskegee University group will put the award toward “Exploring the Optical Properties of Rare Earth-Doped Glasses and Photonic Crystals,” a project that will explore and utilize the importance of rare-earth ions doped in glasses which have a significant impact on quantum optics, photonics, and quantum-state storage.

The University of Maryland received a three-year, $1.4 million grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to support the next phase of the African American Digital and Experimental Humanities Initiative that aims to grow and expand work at the intersection of digital studies, digital humanities, and Black studies. The grant will allow the university’s College of Arts and Humanities and the Maryland Institute for Technology in the Humanities to operate a range of programs for scholars and artists focused on the study of Black life and digital and experimental storytelling and design.

Historically Black Morris Brown College in Atlanta received a $3 million grant from the Arthur M. Blank Family Foundation to help launch its hospitality program and begin its partnership to build a hotel on campus. The grant is the largest awarded to the college in the last 20 years. The grant will help develop the school’s Hospitality Certification Program, which includes a partnership with Hilton Hotels to help with the construction of the facility. The on-campus hotel will be equipped with classrooms and education training spaces to help the students gain the skills needed for work, connect them to job opportunities, and help address the labor shortage in the hospitality industry.

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