IBM Announces $100 Million Investment in Black Colleges, Benedict Gets National Air Time, and HBCU Students Selected for Prestigious Sports Internship

IBM Announces STEM Professional Pipeline Through $100 Million Research and Workforce Development Initiative

International tech conglomerate IBM this week announced the establishment of an HBCU Quantum Education and Research Initiative, a program that will network 13 historically Black institutions with access to corporate technology and knowledgebase.

Howard University will lead the HBCU consortium, which will look to develop the skills and exposure of students and graduates within the program to training in physics, engineering, mathematics, and computer science.

"We believe that in order to expand opportunity for diverse populations, we need a diverse talent pipeline of the next generation of tech leaders from HBCUs. Diversity and inclusion is what fuels innovation and students from HBCUs will be positioned to play a significant part of what will drive innovations for the future like quantum computing, cloud and artificial intelligence," said Carla Grant Pickens, Chief Global Diversity & Inclusion Officer, IBM.

Participating institutions include:

  • Albany State University 

  • Clark Atlanta University

  • Coppin State University

  • Hampton University

  • Morehouse College

  • Morgan State University

  • North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University

  • Southern University

  • Texas Southern University

  • University of the Virgin Islands

  • Virginia Union University

  • Xavier University of Louisiana

The company also announced the creation of a Skills Academy Academic Initiative, which will support institutions with technology upgrades, faculty training, and curriculum support for students.  Schools participating in the academy include:

  • Clark Atlanta University

  • Fayetteville State University

  • Grambling State University

  • Hampton University

  • Howard University

  • Johnson C. Smith University

  • Norfolk State University

  • North Carolina A&T State University 

  • North Carolina Central University

  • Southern University System

  • Stillman College

  • Virginia State University

  • West Virginia State University

WATCH - Benedict Featured on ‘CBS This Morning’

Benedict College was featured this week on CBS flagship morning program ‘CBS This Morning’ as part of the show’s ‘A More Perfect Union’ series.

The private Black college was featured as a system of support for students who have been significantly impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic in housing, education and more.

HBCU Students to Participate in Position Sports’ HBCU Mentoring Program

An international marketing firm with a client list of some of the world’s biggest brands in professional sports leagues and commerce has launched an exclusive mentorship program for 21 students from historically Black institutions.

Position Sports will welcome students from Hampton University, Winston Salem State University, Howard University, Delaware State University and Johnson C. Smith University for a 10-week virtual internship program, where professionals from the agency will conduct calls, workshops, and training sessions with students with aspirations for careers in professional sports and marketing.

“With much of the country’s education shifting to online learning, at least to start this upcoming semester, we thought this would be a great opportunity to help guide future sports professionals through our company platform,” said Natalie Blair, Sports Marketing Manager of Position Sports. “We felt that it was important to cultivate new partnerships with our nation’s HBCUs and to give those students greater access to more opportunities in the sporting industry.”

Nine of the 21 students selected are from Hampton, where officials praised the agency for the unprecedented access to the industry across a diverse range of institutions.

We are extremely proud of all of our students and alumni for their acceptance into the inaugural DREAM Mentorship program with Position Sports. This is the type of success that Hamptonians gain through hard work, perseverance, and dedication. This program will give them a once in a lifetime opportunity to learn first-hand the inner workings of professional sports,” said Hampton University President, Dr. William R. Harvey.