Howard University has received a $1 million donation from university trustees Jim and Heather Murren. The generous donation will allow the university to expand the development of its Center for Women, Gender and Global Leadership. Open to students of all disciplines, the center will develop academic research regarding the intersections of gender equity and race in America. Through the center, students will also have the opportunity to gain internships and jobs.
“We cannot overstate the importance of advancing Black women’s leadership at this moment in history. Facing a global pandemic, a severe economic downturn and a renewed societal focus on racial injustice, the country is facing a critical inflection point. To secure our national economy and ensure our future prosperity, we have to promote female leadership and ensure women’s equal representation across all sectors of our society," the Murrens stated.
"Women already represent a significant and growing proportion of the labor force and a vocal component of civic life. This gift seeks to capture that energy, develop this exceptional talent pool and push our country forward, with women at the helm. Under the transcendent leadership of President Frederick, Howard has become a widely influential institution that is uniquely positioned to develop the next generation of leaders."
Howard University professor J. Jarpa Dawuni will lead the center's efforts moving forward. She will work alongside the university to connect students to industry leaders and policymakers.
“The vision of the Center for Women, Gender and Global Leadership is to prepare future leaders who are gender-conscious and grounded in Black feminist consciousness through collaboration with faculty on research, service learning and global engagement,” Dawuni said.
"The career pipeline project will act as a transformational strategy for opening up professional opportunities and preparing our students for leadership in their chosen careers.”
Moving forward, the university will continue to fundraise. The university hopes to raise $5 million to help develop the center.
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