UNCF (United Negro College Fund) has announced a $5 million commitment from 3M in support of multiyear need-based scholarships for more than a hundred students from the Twin Cities looking to pursue STEM-related studies at an HBCU or Florida International University.
Part of 3M's $50 million commitment to address racial opportunity gaps in STEM education, the UNCF 3M Science. Applied to Life. Scholarship Program will provide renewable scholarships totaling up to $25,000 over four years to high school seniors attending a Saint Paul Public school or St. Paul-serving charter school, as well as graduates of those schools currently enrolled as first-year students at an HBCU or FIU. Recipients of scholarships also will receive summer internship opportunities at 3M and mentoring from 3M employees.
According to UNCF, 25 percent of STEM degrees earned by African Americans — including 46 percent of the STEM degrees earned by Black women between 1995 and 2004 — are earned at HBCUs, while eight HBCUs were among the twenty institutions to award the most science and engineering bachelor's degrees to Black graduates between 2008 and 2012.
"UNCF is excited to work with 3M to launch this new opportunity for students in the Twin Cities who plan to attend our nation's HBCUs," said UNCF president and CEO Michael Lomax. "The scholarship and career development will change the lives of many students who may not have the financial means to further their education after earning a high school diploma. With this support, more students from St. Paul will have the opportunity to earn their STEM degrees and begin meaningful careers in the twenty-first century workforce."