Benedict College to Benefit from the “HBCU Promise” Program
RICHMOND, Va. July 24, 2020 – Dominion Energy (NYSE: D) announced yesterday that 11 historically black colleges and universities in Virginia, Ohio, North Carolina and South Carolina will receive support through a $35 million initiative aimed at promoting higher education equity. The six-year “HBCU Promise” program will provide $25 million in funding to select institutions. Additionally, a $10 million scholarship fund will support African American and underrepresented minority students across the company’s service territory.
Said Thomas F. Farrell, II, the company’s chairman, president and chief executive officer:
“We have all been witness to our country’s evolving conversation on race and social justice. The country is changing, and we have been looking for ways that we can make a difference. Investing in these important institutions – which serve as a springboard for social and economic mobility for so many – is one way we can help. We have actually partnered with HBCUs for nearly 40 years, offering volunteer and financial support. As I have said before, we are humbled and honored to continue supporting them with this current initiative.”
“On behalf of the Benedict College Board of Trustees, students, faculty and staff, I want to express our deep gratitude to Dominion Energy for their generous gift,” said Dr. Roslyn Clark Artis, President and CEO of Benedict College. “This transformational investment is an affirmation of Benedict’s value to the community and we look forward to collaborating with Dominion Energy to build additional capacity and amplify that value.”
In selecting the institutions, the company looked at a range of factors, including locations with a significant customer presence, past partnerships and opportunities to make immediate impact. In structuring the partnerships, the company will focus on four general areas: operating needs, urgent capital needs, endowment and scholarships. Some details remain to be worked out. But Dominion Energy plans to tailor packages to the needs of each institution. The schools are:
Hampton University, Hampton
Norfolk State University, Norfolk
Virginia Union University, Richmond
Virginia State University, Petersburg
Allen University, Columbia
Benedict College, Columbia
Claflin University, Orangeburg
South Carolina State University, Orangeburg
Central State University, Wilberforce, OH
Wilberforce University, Wilberforce, OH
North Carolina A&T State University, Greensboro
About Dominion Energy More than 7 million customers in 20 states energize their homes and businesses with electricity or natural gas from Dominion Energy (NYSE: D), headquartered in Richmond, Va. The company is committed to sustainable, reliable, affordable and safe energy and is one of the nation’s largest producers and transporters of energy with more than $100 billion of assets providing electric generation, transmission and distribution, as well as natural gas storage, transmission, distribution and import/export services. The company is committed to achieving net zero carbon dioxide and methane emissions from its power generation and gas infrastructure operations by 2050. Please visit DominionEnergy.com to learn more.
About Benedict College
Founded in 1870 by a woman, Bathsheba A. Benedict, Benedict College is a private co-educational liberal arts institution with over 2,100 students enrolled in its 25 baccalaureate degree programs. Defying trends, Benedict College maintains an equal male and female student population. This Midlands HBCU welcomes students from all 46 counties in South Carolina, 30 states across America, and 26 countries around the world.
Benedict offers several high-demand fields of study in STEM, Cyber Security, Mass Communication, Sport Management, Business Administration, Engineering, Computer Science, Biology, and Education. The College also has a diverse faculty of which 80 percent are full-time, and 60 percent hold doctorates or the equivalent.
Over the past ten years, three out of five Benedict College graduates have attended professional or graduate schools. There are over 17,000 proud Benedict Tigers throughout the nation. Benedict College has been a community leader for over 150-years and is a significant contributor to South Carolina and the region. Contributing $130 million and 1,218 jobs in total local and annual economic impact, a Benedict graduate working full-time throughout his or her working life can expect to earn $1.1 million in additional income because of their Benedict College degree.
The College made front-page news in the spring of 2018 when it became the first South Carolina college to lower its tuition by 26 percent. Cutting tuition drew praise from the Commission on Higher Education, South Carolina’s education oversight body. The commissioner noted that the move Benedict College made should be applauded because it offers families affordability and students greater access to higher education.
Benedict College has been highly regarded and exceptionally ranked for its programs by several academic and traditional publications. For example, Benedict College was ranked as one of the top baccalaureate colleges in the nation by Washington Monthly magazine for creating social mobility and producing cutting-edge scholarship and research. In 2019, Benedict College received the 2019 ACE/ Fidelity Investments Awards for Institutional Transformation and was named the HBCU of the Year by HBCU Digest.
Benedict College is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges to award baccalaureate and masters degrees. Five of the College’s degree programs hold national accreditation: The School of Education, Social Work, Environmental Health Science, Arts and Sciences and the Tyrone Adam Burroughs School of Business and Entrepreneurship.
Dominion Media Contact:
North Carolina/South Carolina: 800-562-9308