HBCU DIGEST: September 27, 2021

Nikki and Toni

Funding 

HBCUs part of $73 million federal initiative to boost health IT workforce diversity

The Biden administration awarded $73 million in cooperative agreements to 10 higher education and minority-serving institutions to train the future public health informatics and technology workforce.

The Department of Health and Human Services’ (HHS’) health IT arm, the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC), announced the public health informatics and technology workforce development program earlier this year. The program aims to strengthen U.S. public health IT efforts, improve COVID-19 data collection and increase the membership of underrepresented communities within the public health IT workforce. – Fierce Healthcare

Policy

Councilmember looks to HBCUs to diversity Philadelphia police department 

The proposal in Philadelphia would be modeled after a similar program at Lincoln University in Missouri with a curriculum that trains students in the criteria to be qualified applicants who could help diversify the force. “Design a program that would be a direct pipeline to the Philadelphia Police Department and their careers,” said Jones. – 6ABC

Leadership

Alabama A&M to announce president within a week 

Alabama A&M University has announced that it will select its new university president by next week. President Andrew Hugine is retiring after a remarkable tenure in which he turned around the historically Black college.

The A&M Board of Trustees is meeting Friday at 8 a.m. to begin the formal interviews of its three finalists for the job. – Alabama Political Reporter

Research

Program links Columbia Medical Center, United Negro College Fund 

Columbia University Irving Medical Center’s Herbert Irving Comprehensive Cancer Center (HICCC) and the United Negro College Fund (UNCF) have created the Ernest E. Just Biomedical Research Scholars @ Columbia, a groundbreaking program that will provide college and graduate students at historically Black colleges, universities, and medical schools (HBCUs) with research opportunities and access to mentors at Columbia University Irving Medical Center (CUIMC) and the HICCC. In turn, faculty at CUIMC will have access to a diverse and talented cohort of students to mentor, and faculty will collaborate on research projects ranging from epidemiological studies to new ideas for cancer therapy. – Columbia University Irving Medical Center

Grand Valley State expands HBCU partnerships 

Leaders from GVSU and SAU signed the agreement Sept. 20. It’s the second agreement GVSU has signed with an HBCU, following one with Fort Valley State University in April.  The agreements are intended to give students pathways in fields not offered at their college while aligning with GVSU’s goals to attract a more diverse student population and respond to the needs of West Michigan employers. – Holland Sentinel

On-Campus

Virginia State cancels classes for a day to address COVID-19 mental fatigue – 

“Achieving a university-wide COVID-19 positivity rate of less than one percent is no small feat. It requires a great deal of work by our faculty, students, staff, and administration,” said VSU President, Dr. Makola M. Abdullah. “Not only is everyone under a significant amount of pressure, dealing with the typical stress of higher education, but now everyone is doing so with the added exertion of a global pandemic. This makes intentional intervention to address physical and emotional wellness—all the more necessary—which is exactly what this Trojan Wellness Day is all about.” – Virginia State University

Prairie View A&M launches Toni Morrison writing series, lecture by Nikki Giovanni – 

Prairie View A&M University – Organizationally housed in PVAMU’s Marvin D. and June Samuel Brailsford College of Arts and Sciences, the program features an annual writer-in-residence. The writer-in-residence is a “top-tier literary artist with a very substantial body of known work, prominent standing in the literary community and beyond, and a genuine interest in inspiring and guiding other writers, especially students and faculty at Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs),” the program website states. The writer-in-residence will offer public readings, master classes, lectures, class visitations, and critiques of students’ works. – Prairie View A&M University