UNCF and Google are Paving the Path Forward to Increase Opportunities for HBCU Students in Tech Fields with Additional $2M Investment

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Roy Betts UNCF Communications 240.703.3384 roy.betts@uncf.org

Google Annex to be built on Morehouse College and North Carolina Agricultural Technical State University campuses

A long-standing collaboration between UNCF (United Negro College Fund) and Google continues to make groundbreaking investments in historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs).

Google has invested more than $50 million over several years to elevate talent and innovation at HBCUs. Today, in partnership with UNCF, the investment grows—with an additional $2 million in unrestricted funding to Morehouse College and Hampton University.

Both institutions received $1 million to invest in technical infrastructure to support in-class and remote learning, as well as develop curriculum and career support programs for students pursuing career opportunities in the tech industry.

“Today’s announcement is a testament to the outstanding partnership that UNCF and Google have maintained over many years to help diversify and increase opportunities for students of color in the tech industry,” said UNCF President and CEO Dr. Michael L. Lomax. “Google’s investment is building on the work that is already underway on the campuses of Morehouse and Hampton to incorporate innovative uses of technology to educate students and support faculty. Google is setting the standard, and we’re calling on the entire tech industry and others in corporate America to follow Google’s lead.”

Google’s commitment to investing in the future of tomorrow’s Black leaders and professionals is directly addressing the diversity gap in tech.

“We are thrilled to partner with UNCF to continue Google’s ongoing commitment to invest in education pillars like Morehouse College and Hampton University. By supporting these institutions, we move closer to unlocking sustainable equity for the next generation of diverse tech talent and meaningfully expand pathways to the tech industry,” said Google Chief Diversity Officer Melonie Parker.

Google’s $1 million investment to Hampton University will enable the university to expand pathways and opportunities by facilitating needed infrastructure and classroom technology upgrades.

“We are in an unrelenting pursuit of making a reimagined academic experience a reality for our students, faculty, and staff, through digital transformation,” said Hampton University President Darrell K. Williams. “We are delighted to receive this gift and applaud the Google and UNCF partnership for increasing access to unrestricted funds for HBCUs.”

The $1 million gift to Morehouse will support the construction of the new Morehouse College Student Center. The Student Center will include a computer lab, study rooms, and collaborative learning spaces for students to use as a hub for developing entrepreneurial interests and sharing ideas. In addition, Google is also funding the tech upgrade of an existing classroom at Morehouse. It will be transformed into a Google Annex and outfitted with new computers and furniture.

“Our partners at Google and UNCF understand the importance of investing in the intellect and creativity of students of color who are on a trajectory to become future leaders and innovators in STEM,” said David A. Thomas, Ph.D., president, Morehouse College. “Morehouse appreciates this gift and partnership. It provides an opportunity for our faculty to expand its work in preparing students to thrive in the tech ecosystem as entrepreneurs and change agents who will bring much-needed diversity to the field and the creation of emerging technologies.”

In addition to the new Google Annex classroom at Morehouse, Google has also funded and constructed a Google Annex enrichment space at North Carolina Agricultural and Technology University (NC A&T), also an HBCU. Students at both Morehouse and NC A&T will be able to network with Google employees and explore mentorships and career opportunities through the partnership.

Over the last three years, Google investments have focused on elevating Black talent, Black innovation and Black excellence within the company and the tech industry. Google funding has propelled UNCF-member Spelman College to become the top producer of Black women who receive doctoral degrees in STEM fields.

In 2021, Google announced a $50 million grant for 10 HBCUs to enhance each institutions competitiveness in computer science technology, provide professional development opportunities for computer science faculty to innovate the curriculum, and prepare students for careers in the industry, specifically at Google, to help fund scholarships, and to invest in infrastructure to support in-class and remote learning.

Google’s grant followed its previous work to support HBCUs, including its Pathways to Tech initiative which builds equity for HBCU computing education, helps job seekers find tech positions and provides opportunities to accelerate their careers.

Google’s Additional Recent HBCU Investments Include:

  • Spelman College’s Center of Excellence for Minority Women in STEM (Center of Excellence) received a $5 million grant from Google.org, Google’s charitable arm, 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. The dashboard will also scale to include the impact of Indigenous and Latina women. This is the largest single grant that Google.org has awarded to support a project focused on women of color in STEM. In addition to the grant, Google.org will provide a team of Google.org Fellows—Google engineers, product managers, UX researchers and designers—who will work with Spelman on a full-time, pro-bono basis to help build the data dashboard.
  • UNCF, Thurgood Marshall College Fund and Google have embarked on a groundbreaking initiative to transform and accelerate mathematical and computational science research across HBCUs by piloting the launch of The Applied Research Institute for Mathematical and Computational Sciences (ARI). ARI is an HBCU-anchored institute that will conduct leading-edge applied research in a variety of mathematical and computational fields and produce commercially applicable solutions that have positive social impact. Google has committed $1.4M for the pilot year to support research collaborations, research training and talent development.
  • UNCF-member Stillman College Cybersecurity Center received $500,000 from Google Cybersecurity Clinics Fund to build a diverse pipeline of cybersecurity professionals and to help surrounding community organizations defend themselves against cyber attacks.
  • Google and Howard University announced a new partnership called Project Elevate Black Voices. Project EBV is a first-of-its-kind collaboration to build a high-quality African American English (AAE) speech dataset. The project will allow Howard University to share the dataset with those looking to improve speech technology while establishing a framework for responsible data collection, ensuring the data benefits Black communities. Howard University will retain ownership of the dataset and licensing and serve as stewards for its responsible use.


About UNCF

UNCF (United Negro College Fund) is the nation’s largest and most effective minority education organization. To serve youth, the community and the nation, UNCF supports students’ education and development through scholarships and other programs, supports and strengthens its 37 member colleges and universities, and advocates for the importance of minority education and college readiness. While totaling only 3% of all colleges and universities, UNCF institutions and other historically Black colleges and universities are highly effective, awarding 15% of bachelor’s degrees, 5% of master’s degrees, 10% of doctoral degrees and 19% of all STEM degrees earned by Black students in higher education. UNCF administers more than 400 programs, including scholarship, internship and fellowship, mentoring, summer enrichment, and curriculum and faculty development programs. Today, UNCF supports more than 50,000 students at over 1,100 colleges and universities across the country. Its logo features the UNCF torch of leadership in education and its widely recognized trademark, A mind is a terrible thing to waste.”® Learn more at UNCF.org or for continuous updates and news, follow UNCF on Twitter at @UNCF.

About Google

Google’s mission is to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful. Through products and platforms like Search, Maps, Gmail, Android, Google Play, Google Cloud, Chrome and YouTube, Google plays a meaningful role in the daily lives of billions of people and has become one of the most widely-known companies in the world. Google is a subsidiary of Alphabet Inc.

About Morehouse College

Founded in 1867, Morehouse College is the nation’s only college founded to educate men of color. Ranked as Georgia’s top liberal arts college for men, Morehouse produces more Black men who go on to receive doctorates than any other college in the country and is a top feeder school for Black men entering prestigious graduate schools and MBA programs. Also named Georgia’s #1 small college, Morehouse educates a selective group of 2,200 students each year, 60 percent of whom come from families with household incomes of $40,000 or less, yet many of which are highly recruited by Fortune 500 companies. The College has created more Black male Rhodes Scholars than any other HBCU and has the #1 core curriculum among HBCUs nationally. It is the nation’s top producer of Black male graduates in the social sciences, and the top HBCU producer of Black male graduates in business administration, management, operations, English, foreign languages, mathematics, statistics, philosophy, religious studies, and physical sciences. As the national epicenter for thought leadership on human rights and equity, Morehouse is committed to helping the nation address the challenges caused by institutional racism, income and health care disparities, lack of access to capital, detrimental public policy, and the need for high-quality education. Learn more about Morehouse College at morehouse.edu.  

About Hampton University

Hampton University is a comprehensive institution of higher education, dedicated to the promotion of learning, building of character and preparation of promising students for positions of leadership and service. Its curriculum emphasis is scientific and professional with a strong liberal arts undergirding. A historically Black institution, Hampton University is committed to multiculturalism, serving students from diverse national, cultural and economic backgrounds. Research and public service are integral parts of Hampton’s mission. In order to enhance scholarship and discovery, the faculty is engaged in writing, research, and grantsmanship. In achieving its mission, Hampton University offers exemplary programs and opportunities which enable students, faculty and staff to grow, develop and contribute to our society in a productive and useful manner. For more information, visit hamptonu.edu.