Southern Company, an Atlanta-based energy firm, and its subsidiaries have announced a $50 million initiative to provide career-readiness programs to students attending historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs).
The multiyear initiative will provide scholarships, internships, leadership development opportunities, and access to technology for students at select HBCUs in the company's service area in Alabama, Mississippi, Georgia, North Carolina, Tennessee, and Virginia. Among its priorities, the initiative will provide critical scholarship dollars to ensure that talented students can attend and complete college; equip HBCU students with access to new technology and train them to use it to solve real-world problems; expose HBCU students to curricula, mentoring, and pathways to funding that increase their access to entrepreneurship; and develop a corporate pipeline for leadership and career development, beginning with internships provided by Southern Company and its corporate partners.
"[The] initiative is a tribute to the legacy of HBCUs as difference-makers for the American workforce," said Southern Company executive vice president and president of external affairs Chris Womack. "With this investment, we aim to foster a generation of graduates ready to disrupt industries and offer solutions to address the needs of our changing world."