The gift is the largest in the school's history and one of the largest ever to an historically black college or university (HBCU). The unrestricted funds will be used for scholarships, emergency assistance for displaced students, and other needs as determined by college officials.
Nearly 90 percent of students at LeMoyne-Owen qualify for financial aid or currently receive federal Pell Grants. The college recently has launched initiatives to ensure that students can return to campus in the fall and is working to provide electronic devices and improved Wi-Fi access for remote learning.
"Many of our students and their families were already struggling, even before COVID-19. Recent demonstrations have heightened our awareness and commitment to do more to address the inequality and racism that has led to their financial challenges and the critical need to create a more equal and just world," said interim president Carol Johnson Dean. "The Community Foundation of Greater Memphis has generously and courageously helped LeMoyne-Owen College take a huge step forward in educating our future leaders and providing a stronger financial foundation from which to grow."