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U.S. Department of Energy: $3 million available for HBCUs

Secretary of Energy Jennifer Granholm visited South Carolina State University's nuclear engineering department on Thursday.

ORANGEBURG, S.C. — Some $3 million in federal funding will be up for grabs by Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) to use towards their science and engineering programs, according to the U.S. Department of Energy.

Secretary of Energy Jennifer Granholm visited South Carolina State University's nuclear engineering department on Thursday. She says this funding is intended to support diversity in these industries.

“We need to make sure that we’ve got a workforce of scientists and engineers that look like America," Granholm said. "We need to expand the diversity of our talent pool."

According to South Carolina State, it is the only HBCU in the country to offer a nuclear engineering program.

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Posted by Secretary Jennifer Granholm on Thursday, February 17, 2022

"Visions like this is gonna be very, very important for her and for us to be able to fit the needs of the state and the communities that are representing this campus," said U.S. Congressman Jim Clyburn, who is an alum of the university. "That’s why the secretary’s announcement is so important. It helps this school meet the challenges of the future."

The funding opportunities will support approximately 20 student engineers and scientists working over 2-3 years on research projects related to technologies critical to advancing the Biden-Harris Administration’s goals of net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.  

Granholm says one of these challenges is reducing America's carbon footprint. The Biden administration aims to achieve 100 percent clean electricity by the year 2035.

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Posted by U.S. Department of Energy on Thursday, February 17, 2022

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Granholm says South Carolina State's nuclear engineering students could help provide that solution.

“We will not be able to achieve our goals if we are missing chunks of society so we wanna make sure we include and really focus intentionally on expanding access to scientists and engineers of color," she said.

The funding will come from the Office of Carbon Management and Fossil Energy. It will be used for technology to reduce carbon pollution.

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