As part of the establishment of the Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) Undergraduate Success Research Center, the National Science Foundation (NSF) donated $9 million to Morehouse College.
The center, also referred to as STEM-US, will focus on “increasing educational and employment opportunities within the science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) field for minority students.” STEM initiatives at 50 HBCUs will be analyzed by professors and a model will be produced for other institutions to graduate more minority STEM majors. Additionally, the reasoning behind STEM success at HBCUs will be studied, according to officials at Morehouse.
The grant will also be shared with Spelman College and Virginia State University.
Morehouse is the top producer of Black men in the nation who go on to receive doctorate degrees in the STEM field. Additionally, one-third of all Black students who have hold doctoratals graduated with bachelor’s degrees from HBCUs, the college reported.
“Investing in the institutional capacity of HBCUs and developing diverse STEM talent is part of NSF’s longstanding commitment to broaden participation of groups traditionally underrepresented in STEM,” said Dr. Claudia Rankins, program officer in the Directorate for Education and Human Resources at NSF, in a statement. “The knowledge generated by this center will detail what practices make HBCUs successful in educating Black students in STEM, and the center will place HBCUs at the forefront of STEM education reform.”