This week Google announced its plans to award a total of $50 million in grant money to 10 historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs). Company executives say the grants are meant to address the diversity gap in tech, according to CNET.
The schools slated to receive funds are: Claflin University, Clark Atlanta, Florida A&M, Howard, Morgan State, North Carolina A&T State, Prairie View A&M, Tuskegee, Xavier University of Louisiana, and Spelman College.
“This financial commitment is our largest to date for HBCUs,” Google chief diversity officer Melonie Parker wrote in a company blog post announcing the news. “Each institution will receive a one-time unrestricted financial grant of $5 million, providing institutions with the flexibility to invest in their communities and the future workforce as they see fit.”
Spelman College President Mary Schmidt Campbell praised “Google’s generous gift.” She believes the donation will “create pathways in STEM for HBCU students” and “prepare them to be 21st century change agents.”
Apple also announced that it will dole out “Innovation Grants” of $5 million to four universities: Alabama A&M, Howard, Morgan State, and Prairie View A&M.
The funding is part of a broader $100 million Racial Equity and Justice Initiative that Apple launched in June of 2020, according to USA TODAY. It is meant to support the engineering schools at each university and increase the number of new courses in computer architecture, silicon engineering, and emerging hardware technologies.