Spelman College, a historically black college and university (HBCU) located in Atlanta, GA, has received a $12 million donation from Lettie Pate Evans Foundation to construct a new state-of-the-art academic facility on the Spelman campus grounds. 

According to HBCU Buzz, the new building will bring creative disciplines, technology, and innovation into close collaboration.

Additionally, it’s one of the most significant donations in the school’s history!

What The Building Will Be Used For

The generous gift of $12 million will go towards building a new academic facility and creating leadership opportunities for young women. 

They are using the funds to complete and develop the Center for Innovation & the Arts, which already has $81.5 million raised to date. 

President of Spelman, Mary Schmidt Campbell Ph.D., said that, “The rapid convergence of art, technology, and entrepreneurship with the liberal arts and sciences are beginning to yield new solutions to old challenges.” 

She added, “This new facility will be a dynamic learning environment that encourages Spelman students to master their chosen fields and utilize technology-inspired solutions to solve persistent urban problems.”  

Ronda Stryker and her husband Bill Johnston contributed a $30 million gift towards the Center, which has been one of the most significant contributions thus far.  

Why This Matters

HBCUs have a rich history of educating and empowering minority communities, but many struggles financially, unable to compete with larger, more well-funded schools. 

Significant donations from philanthropists like Michael Bloomberg’s $100M to HBCU schools with the goal of an increasing number of Black doctors across the country can help level that playing field. 

If you’re considering giving to your alma mater or another higher education institution, look for opportunities where your gift can have an outsized impact. 

Look for programs that have been cut due to lack of funding, facilities in need of renovation or repairs, and scholarships for students (or a specific group) who wouldn’t otherwise be able to attend.