National Institute on Aging

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.

The College of Arts and Sciences at Emory University in Atlanta has been awarded a $225,000 grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to conduct a yearlong examination of the histories of slavery in the Black Atlantic, as well as the struggles against it, in order to better understand current social justice efforts. The project will explore how slavery in the Black Atlantic has been archived, memorialized, and interpreted both historically and more recently. Historian Walter C. Rucker and anthropologist Bayo Holsey will co-lead the research.

Delaware State University has been awarded a two-year, $230,000 grant to create U.S. history curriculum and lesson plans that include Black history for the 8th and 11th grades of public and charter schools in the state of Delaware. Donna A. Patterson, chair of the department of history, political science, and philosophy at the university is the principal investigator of the grant.

Historically Black Spelman College in Atlanta received a $12 million gift from the Lettie Pate Evans Foundation to support the creation of the Center for Innovation & the Arts on campus. The center will be a state-of-the-art academic facility designed to bring creative disciplines, technology, and innovation into close collaboration. It will be designed to become a catalyst for interdisciplinary interaction by clustering together numerous arts departments, now scattered across the campus, to create a vibrant community of innovators, collaborators, artists, musicians, and scientists.

The University of the District of Columbia, a historically Black educational institution in Washington, D.C., received a $2.3 million gift from an anonymous donor to support Black, Brown, and economically disadvantaged students at the university. This is the largest private gift UDC has received from a single donation. The $2 million gift will create two new scholarship programs under the umbrella, the Deans’ Developing America’s Workforce Nucleus (DAWN) Scholarships.


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