Clark Foundation Makes Investments Worth $11M to College of Engineering

05/21/2024 University Advancement, College of Engineering

EAST GREENSBORO, N.C. (May 21, 2024) – One of America’s most prominent private supporters of engineering education has given $11 million in strategic support for need-based scholarships and learning initiatives to North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University, America’s largest producer of Black engineering graduates.

North Carolina A&T and the A. James & Alice B. Clark Foundation’s relationship began in 2020 with a $1 million multi-year investment that supported students at risk of withdrawing from the university and seeded a matching gift campaign to bolster an Engineering Completion Scholarships Endowment supporting students with unmet financial need.

The Foundation has since extended its support with an additional $10 million contribution, making the combined $11 million investment from the Washington, D.C., based charitable organization one of the largest A&T has ever received.

The $10 million donation will go to the A&T College of Engineering to create the Clark Legacy Endowed Scholarships for first-time, first-year students, and to support Pathways Scholarships for transfer students, experiential learning initiatives and current-use scholarships.

“The Clark Foundation is not only incredibly generous, but they understand the financial challenges that many outstanding students face in completing their college education,” said A&T Chancellor Harold L. Martin Sr. “They have structured these gifts in focused ways that will heighten their impact and ensure that students in need can leverage the help they need to stay in school and complete their education.

“We are grateful for the Clark Foundation’s enthusiastic support. By investing in our College of Engineering, their gifts will have an outsized, national impact on representation of African Americans in the engineering profession.”

The Clark Foundation’s mission is to “expand opportunities for those who demonstrate the drive and determination to better themselves and their communities.” Since its founding in 1987, the foundation has supported hundreds of nonprofits, with a principal goal to ensure that its recipients have the leadership, infrastructure and financial strength to grow and support their communities now and in the future.

“This investment aligns strongly with my father A. James Clark’s vision and in-turn the Clark Foundation’s commitment to making a well-rounded, high-quality engineering education accessible and affordable,” says Courtney Clark Pastrick, board chair of the A. James & Alice B. Clark Foundation. “We are proud to continue our partnership with North Carolina A&T as they further meet the critical needs of students and expand their impact on campus.”

The College of Engineering leads the way in innovative research at A&T, with significant advancements in autonomy, advanced manufacturing, clean energy, cybersecurity, sustainability and biomedical engineering.

“At the Clark Foundation we believe that college success goes beyond scholarships,” said Natalie Grandison, director of Higher Education & Strategy at the Clark Foundation “From the very beginning A&T demonstrated their aligned values through their steadfast commitment to student academic success and personal well-being. This additional investment from the Clark Foundation will enhance the College of Engineering’s ability to not only enroll excellent students, but also support access to experiences outside the classroom that are critical to degree completion and career readiness.”

Through advising and completion scholarships like the ones from Clark Foundation, more than 200 students have been able to stay in school, contributing to the College of Engineering having the highest retention rate on campus.

“Our partnership with the Clark Foundation has allowed the College of Engineering to do what we do best: educate the future leaders of engineering and computer scientists,” said Stephanie Luster-Teasley Pass, College of Engineering dean. “With this exciting and historic investment in the college and, by extension, the university, the Clark Foundation has enabled us to continue the growth of our exceptional students and research endeavors.”

“The significance of the investment from the Clark Foundation cannot be understated,” said Tamera Ziglar, senior director of corporate engagement for the College of Engineering. “From the beginning, they sought to develop deep ties and meaningful interactions with the university and the College of Engineering, which eventually led to the $11 million in support. The legacy and historical significance of Mr. Clark’s desire to give back to future generations of engineers will have a lasting impact on North Carolina A&T, long after the Foundation sunsets.”

Media Contact Information: jmhowse@ncat.edu

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