"It was like manna from heaven."
That's how Natalie Coles describes a $500,000 donation from Dominion Energy to Wilberforce University, a historically black college in Ohio.
The money went toward laptops and hot spots for students when the Covid-19 virus shut down Wilberforce's campus in 2020.
It's one of a growing number of donations to historically black colleges and universities from corporations and philanthropic foundations, the New York Times reports.
According to a May report released at the time, foundation support of HBCUs declined 30% between 2002 and 2019.
But HBCUs have been reporting a sustained increase lately in donations from corporations as well as philanthropic foundations.
Delaware State University received $20 million from MacKenzie Scott in 2020, part of the $560 million that the ex-wife of Jeff Bezos gave to HBCUs.
HBCUs often have smaller endowments and lower levels of public funding than other universities, but they have been using the language of business to argue they are a good investment, a Rutgers University professor who researches HBCUs tells the Times.
Another factor in the giving by corporations has been the influence of their Black employees.
Diageo has given almost $12 million to HBCUs through its employee resource group.
The money has gone toward scholarships at 29 schools to lessen the debt burden on Black graduates
A customized collection of grant news from foundations and the federal government from around the Web.
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