N.C. A&T Receives IBM Quantum Research Center Designation, Joins Broader HBCU Education Initiative

By Jamie Crockett / 09/17/2020 College of Engineering, College of Science and Technology

EAST GREENSBORO, N.C. (Sept. 17, 2020) – North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University joins IBM’s newly established collaboration today with 13 historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) to equip students pursuing quantum computing careers. The IBM-HBCU Quantum Center is a multi-year investment, and A&T’s proven strengths in ground-breaking STEM research and academic rigor resulted in the university’s selection and designation as one of five HBCU leading quantum research centers in the partnership. 

This is a photo of IBM's Quantum Center card

“This is a very exciting partnership as we recognize that quantum computing is an innovative solution to overcome the limitations in computing power we experience with current state-of-the-art computing systems,” said Mohd Anwar, Ph.D., associate professor of computer science in A&T’s College of Engineering and the lead investigator for the university’s quantum research center. “As the No. 1 HBCU and the largest producer of African American engineers, among other notable achievements, our university is positioned to partner with IBM and our HBCU peers as we prepare the next generation to be successful in this area.”

Anwar is joined by Christopher C. Doss, Ph.D., an associate professor in electrical and computer engineering and Raymond Samuel, Ph.D., a professor in biology. Through this partnership, the team will be able to provide opportunities for A&T students from various STEM disciplines.

IBM will make the multi-year investment in the HBCU Quantum Coalition over the next five years, providing training and access to the company’s quantum systems. In the first year, the company will establish the center hub at Howard University and provide seed grants to support research and fund an undergraduate cohort, graduate students and postdoctoral positions. IBM will develop plans to incorporate quantum education and prerequisites in STEM courses.

Additional IBM-HBCU Quantum Center partners:

  • Albany State University
  • Clark Atlanta University
  • Coppin State University
  • Hampton University
  • Morehouse College
  • Morgan State University
  • Southern University
  • Texas Southern University
  • University of the Virgin Islands
  • Virginia Union University
  • Xavier University of Louisiana

In addition to the center partnership, IBM will also provide A&T and 12 other select HBCUs that are a part of the Skills Academy Academic Initiative with a $100 million asset and resource donation, which includes access to university lectures, software and faculty training.

Overall, the two initiatives will involve 21 HBCUs, and A&T is one of only five to participate in both the Quantum Center and Skills Academy. 


Media Contact Information: jicrockett@ncat.edu

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