Drake State Community & Technical College campus, Huntsville, Alabama.

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. – Students at Drake State Community & Technical College will have access to new scholarship dollars over the next year thanks to an anonymous $200,000 donation.

“Receiving the email about this gift to the college was both a pleasant surprise and welcome recognition of the good work of our faculty and staff,” said Dr. Patricia G. Sims, Drake State President. “So many students will benefit from the scholarships funded by this donation.”

The anonymous benefactor chose Drake State because they admire the college’s growth and development over the past few years and the school’s rapid response to the pressures of COVID-19 and increased need for skilled workers in today’s workforce.

At Drake State, we’ve worked hard to develop the programs students need to be successful,” Sims noted. In the past few years Drake State:

  • Became the first and only Historically Black Community College to be awarded a Cooperative Agreement Notice from the NASA/MSFC Minority University Research and Education Project (MUREP) in support of NASA’s Moon to Mars Planetary Autonomous Construction Technologies.
  • Was awarded a $1.3 NASA/MSFC MUREP grant to develop a STEM pipeline for minorities and underrepresented populations.
  • Increased enrollment and retention rates despite the challenges colleges faced from COVID-19. Of note, Drake State saw its completion rate increase by 92.27% since 2020, including a significant increase in short-term certificate awards, showing the call for workers to upskill and return to the workforce.

The donor also expressed interest in supporting Drake State’s work with Veterans and military families and applauded the college’s ability to provide these students with an extra measure of attention.

The nature of this donation will allow the college to remove financial barriers for many students completing short-term certifications or academic degrees.

“We are humbled by the faith shown to our institution and look forward to reporting inspiring success stores about students benefiting from these new scholarships in the months ahead,” Sims added. “I invited other individuals and businesses in our community to learn more about the good work we are doing and step up to support our efforts.”

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ITTA BENA, MSMississippi Valley State University‘s (MVSU) President, Dr. Jerryl Briggs, Sr., has announced that MVSU has received the university’s largest single private gift in school history.

An anonymous donor has made a gift of $2.5 million to support the university’s Finish Line initiative, a scholarship program that assists students in their matriculation to graduation. The gift is the donor’s second to the university this year; the first gift was $250,000.

Mississippi Valley State University President, Dr. Jerryl Briggs.

“Words cannot fully describe how excited and appreciative we are at MVSU,” said Dr. Briggs. “This transformational gift will allow us to continue our commitment to ‘students first’ in pursuing academic achievements. Great things are happening at MVSU. This gift ensures that Valley stays in motion and further allows the university to remain committed to its motto, ‘live for service.’ In addition, this gift will enable students who need financial help, realize their fullest potential and continue their enrollment at the university.”

After receiving the first gift, the university created the Prosperity Scholarship to record the distribution of the funds. All funds from the second gift will be distributed similarly, with the sole purpose and use of fund being to support student scholarships.

The Finish Line Initiative will additionally be used to allow those students who did not receive any scholarship funding at the start of their enrollment at the university but are now excelling academically and actively involved in community activism to receive scholarship support.

“This expansion of the Prosperity Scholarship is for continuing students who have distinguished themselves through outstanding leadership qualities and academic excellence. The primary focus of the award is leadership, which may be demonstrated through traditional school activities, work responsibilities, community activism and involvement, and family commitments,” Briggs continued.

About MVSU
Mississippi Valley State University, as a Carnegie Classified Master’s University, provides comprehensive undergraduate and graduate programs in education, the arts and sciences, and professional studies. The University is driven by its commitment to excellence in teaching, learning, service, and research —- a commitment resulting in a learner-centered environment that prepares critical thinkers, exceptional communicators, and service-oriented, engaged, and productive citizens. MVSU is fundamentally committed to positively impacting the quality of life and creating extraordinary educational opportunities for the Mississippi Delta and beyond. For more information, visit www.mvsu.edu.

The Baltimore Ravens will honor former longtime general manager and Hall of Famer Ozzie Newsome by making a $4 million gift in his name to Maryland’s Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs).

The donation from Ravens owner Steve Bisciotti and his wife, Renee, will create the Ozzie Newsome Scholars Program, which will fund scholarships for Baltimore City Public Schools graduates who attend an HBCU in Maryland.

“The brilliance of Ozzie Newsome extends far beyond his accolades as a player and executive,” said Bisciotti in a statement. “Throughout his entire life, Ozzie has inspired and uplifted everyone around him with his leadership, humility and determination. We hope that Ozzie’s example will inspire each of the Newsome scholars.”

Each of Maryland’s four HBCUs — Bowie State University, Coppin State University, Morgan State University, and the University of Maryland Eastern Shore — will receive a $1 million gift as part of the program. Yearly, each of the four schools will select five City Schools’ graduates as Ozzie Newsome Scholar recipients for its incoming freshman class.

Ozzie Newsome

“I am humbled and honored that Steve and Renee Bisciotti chose to associate my name with this tremendously important scholarship,” said Newsome in a statement. “This program will give many local graduates the ability to continue their education, and in turn will equip them with the necessary tools to make meaningful impact in the Baltimore community and beyond. Thee students will further their education through Maryland’s Historically Black Colleges and Universities, which is especially meaningful to me. I look forward to watching the progress made through this scholarship program.”

Scholars will receive an annual college scholarship of $10,000 for up to five years of college, for a total investment of up to $50,000 per scholar.

“We embrace the responsibility of discovering ways to strengthen educational opportunities for the youth of Baltimore City,” stated Bisciotti. “Any positive impact that can be made to help students – especially in the pursuit of a college education and their career goals – only strengthens our community as a whole. The Ozzie Newsome Scholars Program has the added benefit of providing scholarships funds for Maryland’s four HBCUs, which have served Maryland and Baltimore City so well for many years.”

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(12/16/20) – TikTok announced $1 million in funding to eight HBCUs as a part of their ongoing commitment to healthcare workers and academic institutions that serve underrepresented students with programs focused on public health professions in the medical and healthcare fields. The social media platform donated a total of $10 million to 10 academic institutions, including 8 HBCUs that serve minority students. Each school will receive $1 million in funding to support undergraduate and graduate scholarships for students pursuing medical careers or other health related fields, helping to ensure the success of future Black, Latinx, and Indigenous health heroes.

The gifts benefits Xavier University of Louisiana, Tougaloo College, North Carolina Central University, North Carolina A&T State University, South Carolina State University, Laredo College, University of South Dakota, Florida A&M University, Delaware State University, and Virginia Union University.

“Healthcare workers are the heroes of the global pandemic, and deserving heroes within the TikTok community,” said Belinda Frazier, Head of Culture and Diversity, TikTok North America. “The TikTok Health Heroes Relief Fund was created to support their efforts and we are honored to be able to continue our commitment to the healthcare community. We believe the next generation of health heroes should be reflective of the world around us and we are proud of support medical and health education programs that serve Black, Latinx, and Indigenous students.”

2020 has been a difficult year for many, but through it all there’s been an unwavering symbol of hope and humanity shining through: healthcare workers. From epidemiologists to doctors to surge staff, front line healthcare workers are deserving heroes across the country – and theses health heroes are equally lauded figures within the TikTok community, which is part of why TikTok donated $150 million earlier this year through the Health Heroes Relief Fund.

“Many Xavierites have excelled to become the health heroes that are in high demand during the global pandemic,” said Reynold Verret, President of Xavier University of Louisiana. “This gift from TikTok allows talented young women and men with dreams to sharpen their gifts and succeed at becoming change agents in our community and across the nation through education.”


“We are grateful to TikTok for recognizing the power of everyday health heroes like the one we are developing on our campus in combattling the COVID0-19 pandemic. The University’s Public and Allied Health Department, chaired by Dr. Robert C. Mason, and Chief Medical Officer Dr. Michelle Fisher RN managed a small army of employee and student volunteer who came out every test day – rain or shine – to administer the 35,000 tests necessary to keep us all safe. There were dozens of them on duty every day, and these are our heroes.”

– Dr. Tony Allen, President of Delaware State University

According to a 2018 article in Harvard Business Review, Black people make up 13 percent of the US population; but only four percent of US doctors and less than seven percent of US medical students self-identify as Black. In a qualitative study of Black students’ perspectives on careers in medicine in the Journal of the National Medical Association, students reported financial constraints as one of the major barrier in pursuing a career in medicine. We believe investing in the next generation of Black, Latinx, and Indigenous doctors, nurses, pediatricians, surgeons, and other essential health care workers is one of the best ways to invest in the future of America.

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About TikTok
TikTok is the leading destination for short-form mobile video. TikTok’s mission is to inspire creativity and bring joy. For more information, visit www.tiktok.com.

MacKenzie Scott.

American author and philanthropist MacKenzie Scott announced Tuesday her second significant charitable contribution of the year, giving nearly $4.2 billion to 384 organizations as part of a plan to donate a majority of her fortune.

The announcement came just four months after Scott donated $1.7 billion to 116 organizations, including four historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs), in July. The latest round of philanthropic gifts totals more than $4.16 billion donated to organizations nationwide in the past four months.

“The pandemic has been a wrecking ball in the lives of Americans already struggling. Economic losses and health outcomes alike have been worse for women, for people of color, and for people living in poverty. Meanwhile, it has substantially increased the wealth of billionaires,” Scott wrote in a Medium post.

She continued to say, “It would be easy for all the people who drew the long demographic straws in this crisis to hole up at home feeling a mix of gratitude and guilt, and wait for it to be over – but that’s not what’s happening. The proliferation of community fridges, COVID relief funds, impromptu person-to-person, Venmo gift, viral debt relief campaigns, and mutual aid initiatives has been swift and uplifting.”

Scott’s medium post also included a list of hundreds of organizations that received funds, including seventeen HBCUs, financial service providers for under-resourced communities, civil rights advocacy groups, and legal defense funds.

Scott donated $40 million to Morgan State University, an HBCU in Baltimore. The gift is the largest single private donation in the university’s history, and roughly doubles the school’s endowment.

Also, Scott gave $50 million to Prairie View A&M University, an HBCU in Texas – the school’s largest donation ever, and nearly doubling its endowment, according to the university.

Other HBCUs includes:

  • Alcorn State University
  • Bowie State University
  • Clalflin University
  • Clark Atlanta University
  • Delaware State University
  • Dillard University
  • Elizabeth City State University
  • Lincoln University (PA)
  • Norfolk State University
  • North Carolina A&T State University
  • Tougaloo College
  • University of Maryland Eastern Shore
  • Virginia State University
  • Voorhees College
  • Winston-Salem State University

Scott is the ex-wife of Jeff Bezos, founder of Amazon and Blue Origin, from 1993 to 2019. Also, she served as the executive director of Bystander Revolution, an anti-bullying organization she founded, since 2014. Scott is included in Time Magazine‘s 100 Most Influential People of 2020. According to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, she is the world’s 18th-richest person with a net worth of $60.7 billion. 

Scott stated, “We do this research and deeper diligence no only to identify organizations with high potential for impact, but also to pave the way for unsolicited and unexpected gifts given with full trust and no strong attached.”


Source:

https://www.cnn.com/2020/12/15/business/mackenzie-scott-charity-donations-trnd/index.html

https://mackenzie-scott.medium.com/

CHICAGO, IL – The HBCU Campaign Fund (HCF) Division of Alumni Relations and Division of Development & Finance announces the kick-off of its annual three-month “I Love My HBCU” Campaign beginning on Thursday, March 12, 2020, through Friday, June 12, 2020. Sampled by the Thurgood Marshall College Fund (TMCF) and Prairie View A&M University (PVAMU), I Love My HBCU month was created to encourage alumni and friends of Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) to give to their institutions as a way to demonstrating their affinity. HCF is initiating its campaign beginning March each year, which will identify alumni ambassadors who can speak upon their HBCU experience, why they love their HBCU and encourage others to donate to an HBCU or HCF during their campaign months.

“We are so excited to announce another year of our annual “I Love My HBCU” Alumni Campaign this year. The goal is to reach $15,000 donated to HBCUs and $10,000 alone to HCF in the duration of the three-months to financially assist students and our nation jewels in this much crucial time,” said Demetrius Johnson, Jr., President and CEO, Founder at HBCU Campaign Fund. “Again, we are asking for all HBCU alums to join us in making a minimum gift for the founding year of their HBCU alma mater, or another HBCU which will commemorate the year that the institution was established. If we can get the momentum of donating that amount going, that will assist in surpassing the minimum set-goal and keep student-success going. HCF will also highlight those alums who’ve given on our social media and communication handles in token of appreciation of their contribution while also encouraging others to participate.”

Alumni who participate in the three-month campaign will be recognized on HCF’s website and communication platforms, speaking on the value of their HBCU experience, why they love their institution, and encouraging others to donate. When sharing on social media, the official hashtag is #HCFILoveMyHBCU. [Please note before participants are highlighted, they must submit a substantial donation or contribution receipt in pdf or jpg format as proof showing that they’ve donated their HBCU or HBCU of choice dated between March 12, 2020, and June 12, 2020, or either has donated HCF. Emailed receipts are accepted. Monies generated in this campaign will go to the institution’s Foundation/Institutional Advancement offices, HCF Scholarship Fund, or HCF Unrestricted Fund that serves the primary organization’s needs. The unrestricted fund at HCF allows flexibility to make an immediate impact on the organization’s needs in its advocacy and aid for HBCUs and MSIs at any moment. HCF’s ultimate hope is that alumni enroll in the recurring gift programs at their HBCUs.

Incentives and gifts are planned to be available to donors who participate and give toward the campaign from HCF. Everyone who donates will receive an HCF “I Love My HBCU” button. Those who gift $50 will receive a limited edition “I Love My HBCU” pennant. Those who gift $100 or more will receive an HCF “I Love My HBCU” pennant, button, and a t-shirt with the name of the HBCU of their choice on the back.

To participate in the campaign, please visit www.hbcucampaignfund.org/divisions/alumnirelations/ilovemyhbcu to complete the necessary form.

For further questions or concerns, contact HCF at 773-988-2106 or via email at support@hbcucampaignfund.org.

CHICAGO, ILHBCU Campaign Fund (HCF) Division of Alumni Relations and Development announces that it will kick off a three-month long “I Love My HBCU” campaign on Thursday, March 14, 2019, through Friday, June, 14, 2019. Sampled by the Thurgood Marshall Fund and Prairie View A&M University, I Love My HBCU Month was created to encourage alumni and friends of Historically Black Colleges and Universities to give to their Universities as a way of demonstrating their affinity. HCF is initiating its campaign in March each year, which will identify alumni ambassadors who can speak on their HBCU experience, why they love their HBCU, and encourage others to donate to their HBCU or HCF during the campaign months.

“The Division of Alumni Relations and Development is resuming its goal to generate over a minimum of $15,000 during the three months into HBCUs and hopefully $10,000 to HCF alone to assist our nation jewels and increase alumni giving,” said Demetrius Johnson, Jr., President and CEO, Founder at HBCU Campaign Fund. “We are asking all HBCU alums to make a minimum gift of the founding year of their HBCU alma mater which is commemorative of the year that their University was established. If several individuals donate that amount to their HBCU, that will surpass our minimum set-goal and assist student success. HCF is also spotlighting those alums who give on our social media in appreciation of their contribution, but also encouraging others to participate.”

Alumni’s who participate in this campaign will be highlighted on HCF’s website and social media platforms, speaking on their HBCU experience, why they love their institution, and encouraging others to make a donation. When posting on social media, the official hashtag is #HCFILoveMyHBCU. Before participants are highlighted, they must submit a physical donation or contribution receipt in pdf or jpeg format as proof showing that they have donated to their HBCU dated between March 14, 2019, and June 14, 2019 or either have donated to HCF. Email receipts are accepted. Monies generated in this campaign goes to the Universities Foundation/Institutional Advancement offices, HCF Scholarship Fund, or HCF’s Unrestricted Fund that serves the organization. The unrestricted fund at HCF allows flexibility to make an immediate impact on the organization needs in its advocacy and aid for HBCU and PB institutions at any moment. HCF ultimate hope is that alumni enroll in recurring gift programs at their HBCUs.

Incentives and gifts are plan to be available to donors who participate in the campaign from HCF. Everyone who donates will receive an HCF “I Love My HBCU” button. Those who gift $50 to the campaign will receive a limited edition “I Love My HBCU” pendant. Contributions of $100 or more will receive a HCF “I Love My HBCU” pendant, button, and t-shirt with the name of their HBCU on the back.

Those who are interested in participating can visit the “I Love My HBCU” campaign page at www.hbcucampaignfund.org/divisions/alumnirelations/ilovemyhbcu to complete the spotlight form.

For further questions, contact HCF at 773-988-2106 or via email at support@hbcucampaignfund.org.

PINE BLUFF, AR – On Tuesday, the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff (UAPB) announced a $2.5 million gift from Simmons Bank for upgrades to the football and baseball athletics facilities.

According to a press release from the university, the gift is the largest in UAPB history and will fund a new football stadium scoreboard and turf, along with completion of the baseball pavilion at the Tori Hunter Baseball and Softball Complex. The stadium field will be renamed to Simmons Bank Field. The gift is pending UA System Board of Trustees approval at its May 23-24 meeting.

“On behalf of UAPB faculty, staff, students and alumni, I’d like to express our appreciation to Simmons Bank for its generous gift,” said Dr. Lawrence B. Alexander, Chancellor of UAPB. “This donation will directly benefit our student-athletics by assisting them in reaching and exceeding their athletic and academic performance goals.”

Simmons First National Corp., founded in 1903, is one of the largest financial companies based in Arkansas. Simmons Bank’s downtown complex is Pine Bluff’s tallest building.

“Simmons is honored to partner with UAPB to help students excel right here in our hometown of Pine Bluff,” said George A. Makris, Jr., chairman and CEO of Simmons First National Corp. “There is nothing more rewarding for our bank than the opportunity to invest in our communities, especially in our young people.”

“We are grateful to Simmons Bank for its long-standing partnership with UAPB, and more specifically, this major gift will allow us to complete much-needed upgrades. These improvements will benefit our student-athletes and create a better fan experience during football and baseball games.”

The new Simmons Bank Pavilion will help to complete construction at the Torii Hunter Complex that opened in 2011. Hunter, a Pine Bluff native and former Major League Baseball player and five-time All-Star selection, previously donated $500,000 for the initial construction of the baseball and softball complex, the largest contribution to UAPB before the Simmons Bank gift.

 

 

 

 

About Simmons Bank

Simmons Banks is an Arkansas state-chartered bank that began as a community bank in 1903. Through the decades, Simmons has developed a full suite of financial products and services designed to meet the needs of individual consumers and business customers alike. Simmons is a subsidiary bank for Simmons First National Corporation (NASDAQ: SFNC), a publicly traded bank holding company headquartered in Pine Bluff, Arkansas. For more information, visit www.simmonsbank.com.

About the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff

The University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff (UAPB) is an 1890 Land-Grant HBCU with a diverse student population, competitive degree offerings and stellar faculty. For more than 140 years, UAPB has worked to create an environment that inculcates learning, growth and productivity while affording a basic need to its students – a chance to advance. UAPB offers Certificate and Associates degree programs, more than thirty Undergraduate programs, Master’s degree programs and a Doctorate program in Aquaculture/Fisheries. Students are active in more than 100 organizations, an internationally renowned Vesper Choir, Marching Band, Concert Bands, Wind Symphony, nationally recognized debate team, award-winning theater department and accomplished athletic program.

LOUISVILLE, KY – Simmons College of Kentucky received a significant donation and a big boost towards its mission, according to WDRB.com.

On Friday, the College received $200,000 to help with its expansion and tuition assistance. Donors Dr. Mark and Cindy Lynn say they weren’t familiar with Simmons College in the beginning.

“Simmons College to us is a symbol of hope for a lot of things. And it’s not just people and kids. It’s a symbol of hope for our whole community. It’s a symbol of hope for our growth. It’s a symbol of hope for where we want to go in life.” said D. Mark Lynn.

The college focuses on educating students in an urban setting and helping with financial assistance. Students, faculty and Mayor Greg Fisher were all on hand for the donation.

 

ABOUT SIMMONS COLLEGE OF KENTUCKY

Founded in 1879, the State Convention purchased four acres of land in Louisville to serve the campus for the Kentucky Normal and Theological Institute.

Simmons College of Kentucky is well positioned for bright future as a thriving institution of higher learning serving traditionally underserved communities

For more information about Simmons College of Kentucky, visit www.simmonscollegeky.edu.

 

 

CHICAGO, IL – HBCU Campaign Fund’s (HCF) Division of Alumni Affairs announced that it will kick off a three-month long “I Love My HBCU” campaign on Wednesday, March 14, 2018, and ending June 14, 2018. Sampled by the Thurgood Marshall College Fund and Prairie View A&M University, I Love My HBCU Month was created to encourage alumni and friends of Historically Black Colleges and Universities to give to their Universities as a way of demonstrating their affinity. HCF is initiating its campaign in March 2018 which will identify alumni ambassadors who can speak on their HBCU experience, why they love their HBCU and encourage others to donate to their HBCU or HCF during the campaign months.

“Our goal during the three months to generate over a minimum amount of $15,000 into HBCUs and hopefully 5,000 to HCF alone in assisting our nation HBCU’s,” said Demetrius Johnson Jr., President and CEO, Founder. “We are asking alums to make a minimum gift of the founding year of your HBCU which is commemorative of the year your university was established.”

Alumni who participate in this campaign will be highlighted on HCF’s website and social media platforms, speaking on their HBCU experience, why they love their HBCU and encouraging others to donate. When posting on social media, the official hashtag is #HCFILoveMyHBCU. Before participants are highlighted, they must submit a physical donation or contribution receipt in pdf as proof showing that they have donated to their HBCU dated between March 14, 2018, and June 14, 2018, or have donated to HCF. Monies received in this campaign will go to their HBCU Foundation Funds or HCF unrestricted fund that serves the Organization. The unrestricted fund allows flexibility to make an immediate impact on the organization needs in its advocacy and aid for HBCUs and PB institutions at that moment. HCF hopes that alumni will enroll in recurring gift program for their HBCU.

“I hope that this benefits our efforts in advocating for HBCUs and that alumni take the average in giving back to their HBCUs,” said Demetrius. “We also looking to take advantage to sustain recruitment during this campaign as we’ve asked alumni to give future college-seekers advice in their spotlights.”

Incentives and gifts will be available to donors who participate in this campaign from HCF. Everyone who donates will receive an HCF “I Love My HBCU” button. Those who gift $50 to the campaign will receive a limited edition “I Love My HBCU” pendant. Contributions of $100 or more will receive a pendant, HCF “I Love My HBCU” button, and an “I Love My HBCU” t-shirt with the name of their HBCU on the back.

Alumni who are interested in participating in the spotlight can visit HCF Division of Alumni Affair’s “I Love My HBCU” campaign page at www.hbcucampaignfund.org/divisions/alumniaffairs/ilovemyhbcu to fill out the application.

For further questions or concerns, contact HCF via email at support@hbcucampaignfund.org or by phone at 773.988.2106.