Columbia, SC (WLTX) -- Three colleges in South Carolina received a grant to improve student employment after graduation. The United Negro College Fund (UNCF) allocated a $6 million grant to the Carolina Cluster Pathways Program, which includes Claflin University ($3.3 million), Benedict College ($1.5 million) and Voorhees College ($1.2 million).
"These institutions are going to be the forefront of innovation and change," said Michael Lomax, the president of UNCF.
All three colleges will work together to help prepare graduates for the workforce. The grant will enhance technology and the ability to transform student scholars into career-oriented professionals.
"We need to make sure our curriculum is relevant and that's what this grant is going to afford us the opportunity to do," said Dr. Franklin Evans, the president of Vooheers College.
Claflin University president, Dr. Henry Tisdale, said research shows that 12% of recent college graduates are unemployed one year later. He added that the grant was needed because that percentage doubles for historically black colleges.
"We knew that we needed to set them on a pathway that we can give a certain sense of security that they will get a job or get internships or get opportunities," he said.
This $6 million grant will help students, like freshman Traymall Holand, who is ready to take advantage of the new programs to improve his chances of finding a job after college.
"Most modern jobs are looking for students who are skilled, more experienced, more wise and more prepared," he said.
Twenty-four colleges were chosen to receive money from UNCF. South Carolina received the largest share of the grant.
© 2017 WLTX-TV