Morning Briefing – July 5, 2021


Orville E. Kean Campus, St. Thomas
$6 Million donation to establish University of the Virgin Islands medical school

University of the Virgin Islands (UVI) President Dr. David Hall announced today that former Board of Trustees member Donald Sussman, a noted philanthropist, financier, and St. John homeowner, has made a $6 million, landmark donation to establish a medical school at the University.       

This project will become only the fifth historically black medical school in the United States and its territories, subject to receiving approval by the Liaison Committee on Medical Education.     

“This is an exciting milestone for our University and, more importantly, our entire community. The S. Donald Sussman School of Medicine will improve the quality of education and health care across the Virgin Islands, and this donation reinforces Donald’s passion for and belief in the transformative power of both,” said Dr. Hall. “Donald has long been a supporter of the University, and his incredible gift is the foundation upon which we build moving forward.”  (University of the Virgin Islands)

Phylicia Rashad
Phylicia Rashad sends apology letter to Howard University students and parents

Rashad sent the letter Friday, offering her “most sincere apology” for her enthusiasm upon learning that Cosby’s rape conviction was overturned. She co-starred with him on The Cosby Show from 1984 to 1992, playing Cosby’s wife, Clair Huxtable.

“My remarks were in no way directed towards survivors of sexual assault. I vehemently oppose sexual violence, find no excuse for such behavior, and I know that Howard University has a zero-tolerance policy toward interpersonal violence,” Rashad wrote. (Deadline)

NIH Awards Four Spots on Potential $3.6B Scientific, Operations and  Administrative Resources IDIQ - GovCon Wire
NIH launches ‘Path to Excellence’ federal contract support initiative

The PEI Initiative is a tremendous opportunity for the National Institutes of Health to work more collaboratively with Historically Black Colleges and Universities.

The mission of the PEI Initiative is to empower HBCUs with the knowledge, resources, and skills they need to effectively and consistently compete for and win contracts from the National Institutes of Health and thereby diversify revenue streams and create more research opportunities for those academic institutions. 

The PEI Initiative is a uniquely designed step-by-step roadmap to create significantly more opportunities for HBCUs through collaboration with business partners by providing training and technical assistance to HBCUs applying for NIH contracts and grants. (National Institutes of Health)

Science Consortium of Minority Schools – Empowering Minority Students into  STEM
Meharry saves our children and our city

When COVID-19 threatened the safety of MNPS students, faculty and staff, Meharry was equipped geographically and operationally to stop the spread. The college formed a wholly owned subsidiary – Meharry Medical College Ventures (MMCV) – to leverage its clinical, research and educational expertise to spearhead health initiatives in our city. MMCV partnered with MNPS, RecoverHealth and other businesses in our community to develop and implement a comprehensive, district-wide plan to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 in our159 public schools and to protect students, faculty and staff from its deadly impact.

Today, Nashville holds an exemplary track record among major U.S. public school systems for its management of COVID-19. Thanks to MMCV, our schools were able to open their doors while other urban districts across the country remained closed. Responding to the many concerns of rightly anxious Metro parents, MMCV plotted out intricate safety protocols for school reentry. At every step, Meharry experts established safeguards, ensured rigorous screening and testing, and hired and trained the critical staff needed for MNPS’ systemwide COVID-19 response. (Tennessee Tribune)