White House Initiative on HBCUs Announces 2022 Scholars

Media Contact

Monique LeNoir UNCF Communications 202.810.0231 monique.lenoir@uncf.org

Today, the United States Department of Education announced the 2022 class of the White House Initiative on Advancing Educational Equity, Excellence and Economic Opportunity through Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) Scholars. This is the ninth cohort of undergraduate, graduate and professional students announced through the White House Initiative, a group of 86 scholars from 56 HBCUs across the U.S. which also includes 27 attending UNCF (United Negro College Fund)-member HBCUs.

A noted accomplishment, the HBCU Scholars were selected from a competitive pool of more than 350 students. Applications required the signature of their HBCU president or designated HBCU faculty, adding a level of prestige to this application process.

“The HBCU Scholars announced today have dedicated themselves to their learning and exemplify the talent that our nation’s HBCUs have nurtured for generations,” said U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona. “The Biden-Harris administration is committed to supporting these leaders, and I cannot wait to learn from them while they serve as ambassadors for the White House Initiative and their institutions.”

“UNCF congratulates our scholars for being selected,” said Lodriguez V. Murray, senior vice president, public policy and government affairs, UNCF. “This just proves what we have always known: ‘A mind is a terrible thing to waste,’ but once the investment in that mind happens, the sky is the limit. Also, we commend our institutions, which are the leaders at accepting and developing talent from socio-economic underserved backgrounds—preparing them to change the world. It is when our talented young people accept the challenges presented by our member HBCUs that this kind of superlative is undeniable.”

During the upcoming academic school year, HBCU Scholars will serve as ambassadors of the White House Initiative on HBCUs. They will be offered training and cross-university networking opportunities. Scholars will also have an opportunity to work on issues specifically related to the HBCU community and participate in national and regional events with professionals from a wide range of disciplines.

Additionally, HBCU Scholars will be invited to the 2022 HBCU Week National Annual Conference, Sept. 20-23 in Washington, DC. During the conference, scholars participate in sessions designed to engage a spirit of entrepreneurship, innovation and personal and professional development. Most importantly, they will have opportunities to engage with one another and showcase their individual and collective talent.

Program events are designed to enhance HBCU Scholars’ professional development and create post-graduation opportunities within non-profit, business and federal agency partners to ensure that the U.S. as a nation remains globally competitive.

2022 UNCF HBCU Scholars 

(by their home state or country)


  • Montgomery – Aylon Gipson attends Morehouse College, Atlanta, GA
  • Montgomery – Da’Jon Stoudemire attends Stillman College, Tuscaloosa, AL
  • Tuscaloosa – Chase Cameron attends Lane College, Jackson, TN


  • Little Rock – Jason Muka attends Philander Smith University, Little Rock, AR


  • Nassau – Jameliah Pinder attends Shaw University, Raleigh, NC


  • San Bernardino – Jordan Holt attends Tuskegee University, Tuskegee, AL


  • Atlanta – Nina Giddens attends Xavier University, New Orleans, LA
  • Stockbridge – Jayden Williams attends Clark Atlanta University, Atlanta, GA


  • Chicago – Diamond Williams attends Xavier University, New Orleans, LA
  • Chicago – Steven McCollough attends Stillman College, Tuscaloosa, AL
  • Homewood – Lauren Proby attends Spelman College, Atlanta, GA


  • Kingston – Daniel Jathan attends LeMoyne-Owen College, Memphis, TN


  • Baltimore – D’Aria Couther attends Bennett College, Greensboro, NC
  • Temple Hills – Nina Rutherford attends Benedict College, Columbia, SC


  • Belleville – Jiyahna Price attends Bethune-Cookman University, Daytona, FL


  • Columbus – Zachary Wilson attends Rust College, Holly Springs, MS
  • Horn Lake – Cristina Calhoun attends Rust College, Holly Springs, MS

North Carolina

  • Charlotte – Paige Davis attends Johnson C. Smith University, Charlotte, NC


  • Oklahoma City – Nakya Carter attends Shaw University, Raleigh, NC


  • Philadelphia – Horace Ryans III attends Morehouse College, Atlanta, GA

South Carolina

  • Charleston – Kierra Wellington attends Allen University, Columbia, SC


  • Chattanooga – Lauren Tolbert attends Claflin University, Orangeburg, SC
  • Memphis – Jaylynn Lanier attends LeMoyne-Owen College, Memphis, TN


  • Dallas – Kalaya Sibley attends Dillard University, New Orleans, LA
  • Galveston – Kemryn Lawrence attends Clark Atlanta University, Atlanta, GA
  • Houston – Nicholas McDermott attends Huston-Tillotson University, Austin, TX


  • Richmond – Michael Kevin Crossley, Sr., attends Virginia Union University, Richmond, VA



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 13% of bachelor’s degrees, 5% of master’s degrees, 10% of doctoral degrees and 24% 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 60,000 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.