HBCU Executive Leadership Institute at Clark Atlanta University Announces $600,000 Investment from ECMC Foundation

ECMC Foundation’s grant will also enable HBCU ELI to implement innovative initiatives, including scholarships, mentorship programs, and leadership development workshops.

Clark Atlanta University’s HBCU Executive Leadership Institute (HBCU ELI) proudly announces receipt of a groundbreaking $600,000 investment from ECMC Foundation. ECMC Foundation’s mission is to improve higher education for career success among underserved populations through evidence-based innovation.

With a North Star goal to eliminate equity gaps in postsecondary completion by 2040, so that underserved learners have greater opportunity for social and economic mobility, ECMC Foundation’s three strategic priorities are to remove barriers to postsecondary completion; build the capacity of organizations, institutions and systems; and transform the postsecondary ecosystem. Now in its fourth year, HBCU ELI has held a pivotal role in cultivating the next generation of leaders within HBCUs. Nearly 100 Fellows have completed the program’s robust curriculum and received micro-credentials to date.

“ECMC Foundation values the vital role of HBCUs in closing equity gaps in postsecondary completion and advancing systemic change on behalf of our nation’s students,” said Jacob Fraire, President of ECMC Foundation. “HBCU ELI is a critical vehicle to help ensure leaders are prepared to innovate, address contemporary challenges, and optimize student outcomes.”

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By supporting HBCU ELI, ECMC Foundation is investing in future leaders who will serve students and communities nationwide. The generous grant will empower HBCU ELI to enhance programs for the incoming 2024 Community of Fellows, help expand program reach, and deepen its overall impact on executive leadership development within the HBCU community.

“We are honored to receive the generous donation from ECMC Foundation, whose unwavering dedication to empowering HBCUs mirrors our commitment to providing equitable opportunities through education,” said Dr. George T. French, Jr., President, Clark Atlanta University. “Their support strengthens our capacity to cultivate the next generation of legacy leaders and create meaningful change within HBCUs and beyond.”

“For many years, ECMC Foundation has been dedicated to working on behalf of students on the margins of education so their investment in our work comes as no surprise,” said Dr. Phyllis Worthy Dawkins, Executive Director of the HBCU Executive Leadership program and 18th President of Bennett College. “We are excited to partner with an organization, like ECMC Foundation, that believes in the critical role of HBCUs and wants to pour into the success of future leaders.”

ECMC Foundation’s grant will also enable HBCU ELI to implement innovative initiatives, including scholarships, mentorship programs, and leadership development workshops. Each program component is designed to address the unique challenges and opportunities faced by leaders within the HBCU community, fostering a pipeline of diverse and dynamic executives poised to make a lasting impact and become legacy leaders.

The need for increased funding at Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) is underscored by statistics from the United Negro College Fund (UNCF). According to UNCF, despite enrolling only 8% of all African American students in higher education, HBCUs graduate 17% of all African American students earning bachelor’s degrees. However, HBCUs receive only about 3% of philanthropic contributions to higher education, highlighting a critical funding gap that impacts their ability to provide quality education and leadership development.

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