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.

Historically Black Hampton University in Virginia received a five-year, $4.8 million grant from The National Institutes of Health for a study designed to examine biopsychosocial factors that impact cognitive outcomes in a group of 600 middle-aged and older Black adults age 55 and older with both low and high levels of education. The grant program is under the direction of Travonia Brown-Hughes, an associate professor in the School of Pharmacy at Hampton University.

Spelman College, the historically Black liberal arts educational institution for women in Atlanta, received a $5 million grant from Google. The grant will fund the Center of Excellence for Minority Women in STEM’s effort to support the development of a comprehensive data dashboard that will help shape the narrative of the impact of Black women leading, working, and studying in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics fields. Google engineers, product managers, UX researchers, and designers will work with Spelman on a full-time, pro bono basis to help build the data dashboard.

Historically Black Jackson State University in Mississippi received a $450,000 grant from the Andrew Mellon Foundation to support the work of the Margaret Walker Center on campus. The grant will fund community engagement programs, expansion of the center, and ultimately the development of the center as a museum and archive. An accomplished poet, Dr. Walker taught at Jackson State University for 30 years. She died in 1998.

The department of sociology and anthropology at Historically Black Morgan State University in Baltimore has received a $500,000 grant from the National Science Foundation to conduct hands-on studies of “situational policing techniques and their impact on citizens living in Baltimore neighborhoods. The concept of situational policing refers to adapting policing style and strategy to the type of neighborhood where police are fighting crime. The study will involve participatory action research, a method in which community members work as partners with the research team to help collect and process data used to create the desired change. Scholars at West Virginia University will also be participating in the research.

Historically Black Tuskegee University in Alabama received a $1 million donation from Clif Bar & Company,  a food company that produces a wide range of healthy snacks. The funds will support the advancement of organic agriculture and farming practices through the university’s College of Agriculture, Environment, and Nutrition Sciences.


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