Microsoft Aids Black Public College Technology Program
By Ronald Roach
Microsoft has announced a $15 million software grant to the Thurgood Marshall Scholarship Fund (TMSF) technology initiative, which is a multi-year effort to raise more than $100 million to upgrade technology at public historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs). The software grant will be distributed to TMSF institutions through a competitive process designed to identify the schools best prepared to take advantage of the technology.
On Capitol Hill in late February, Congressional Black Caucus members, including Black Caucus chairman U.S. Rep. Elijah E. Cummings, D-Md., were on hand as TMSF President Dwayne Ashley accepted the donation on behalf of the TMSF’s 45 public HBCUs in 22 states, Washington, D.C., and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
“The Congressional Black Caucus is proud of its relationship with Microsoft and the Thurgood Marshall Scholarship Fund. Historically Black colleges and universities have long been the training ground for African-American scholars and professionals,” Cummings said. “This grant will create a bridge that will help close the ‘digital divide’ in higher education and provide the necessary tools HBCUs need to compete in today’s global economy.”
TMSF member schools selected to receive software from the grant will implement technology solutions to help schools be more competitive; address key long-term technology needs and opportunities; and benefit students, faculty and administrative staffs.
“Commitment to helping diverse students achieve their potential through higher education is important to Microsoft,” said Bruce Brooks, director of community affairs at Microsoft. “We hope that with this $15 million software grant to the Thurgood Marshall Scholarship Fund, we can help institutions like HBCUs provide students with improved technology, support and, most important, opportunities to make a positive difference in their education, their work and their communities.”
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