MEMPHIS, TN (Feb. 10, 2021) – FedEx Corp. (NYSE: FDX) announced today a pledge to commit $5 million to four Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) in Mississippi and Tennessee. The initiative will create valuable education and job readiness for students at Tennessee State University, Jackson State University, Mississippi Valley State University, and LeMoyne-Owen College.

The initiative is a collaborative effort among FedEx and each school designed to help prepare students for the workforce beyond formal education. A portion of the multi-year commitment will be used to offer relief support to help students, faculty, and staff at each school who have suffered adverse economic impact due to COVID-19.

“With many students and families struggling right now as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, our hope is that this timely investment will help keep more students in school and provide future access to leadership, educational and employment opportunities,said Judy Edge, corporate vice president of Human Resources at FedEx. “This contribution further deepens our commitment to creating more equitable communities by breaking down barriers to work and making a sustainable, long-term impact on underrepresented groups.”

This new initiative builds on the longstanding relationship between these HBCUs and FedEx, which includes endowed scholarships at Jackson State University, Tennessee State University and LeMoyne-Owen College; a customized career readiness program established at Mississippi Valley State University; and leadership summits in support of the Southern Heritage Classic for students at both Tennessee State University and Jackson State University.

Today’s announcement reinforces the company’s longstanding commitment to advancing inclusion and empowering economic opportunity in the Black community. Through skills training programs, mentoring, and collaboration with leading national and local organizations, FedEx is focused on making the communities it serves more equitable, helping empower diverse voices, and providing access to leadership, educational and employment opportunities.

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About FedEx Corp
FedEx Corp. (NYSE: FDX) provides customers and businesses worldwide with a broad portfolio of transportation, e-commerce and business services. With annual revenue of $75 billion, the company offers integrated business solutions through operating companies competing collectively, operating collaboratively and innovating digitally under the respected FedEx brand. Consistently ranked among the world’s most admired and trusted employers, FedEx inspires its nearly 600,000 team members to remain focused on safety, the highest ethical and professional standards and the needs of their customers and communities. To learn more about how FedEx connects people and possibilities around the world, please visit about.fedex.com.

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Three Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs), Fayetteville State University (FSU), Texas Southern University (TSU) and Virginia State University (VSU) have been chosen to participate in a pilot high school-to-college scholars program in a joint initiative of the Thurgood Marshall College Fund (TMCF) and Strada Education Network, the two organizations have announced.

“Seeing our program expand into HBCUs through this investment from Strada to TMCF will no doubt create a multiplier effect where these scholars transform into business leaders making a significant impact in our communities,” said Fleischer.

According to an press release from TMCF, Strada is providing a three-year, $1.8-million grant to creat the TMCF Fleischer HBCU [historically Black colleges and universities] Scholars Program, which is modeled after the Fleischer Scholars Program established in 2009 by entrepreneur Morton Fleischer, to help academically promising students from economically fragile backgrounds. Dr. Harry L. Williams, the TMCF President and CEO, hailed the new program as “a true capacity-building opportunity for our member schools” that will “provide the pilot schools with tools and technology to bolster recruitment efforts and hopefully achieve the same level of success as the original Fleischer program.”

The program will begin next summer and bring 50 rising high school seniors to a “boot camp” at each of the university sites, involving potentially 450 students total by the end of the pilot, said Williams. The hope is that the program will succeed, and with help from funders, expand to include all 47 schools that are part of TMCF, Williams said.

Dr. Harry L. Williams, President and CEO at Thurgood Marshall College Fund

“We see this groundbreaking program as a true capacity-building opportunity for our member schools,” he said.

The new initiative dovetails with Strada’s mission to support and scale student success programs that help prepare students to pursue successful career paths, said the nonprofit’s president and CEO, Bill Hansen. He predicted that the scholars program will “build on the impressive success of the Fleischer program and replicate it to benefit thousands more high school students in their transition to attend our country’s leading HBCUs.”

Dr. Austin Lane, president of Texas Southern University, called his school’s participation in the pilot program an honor. “It gives TSU a unique opportunity to serve first-generation, underrepresented students in our area,” said Lane. “We will showcase what college is all about and introduce them to the finest examples of entrepreneurship and business in the Houston area. We will partner with the Houston Independent School District and other feeder institutions to identify the most promising young scholars to participate.”

“Most important,” he added, “this program allows TSU to help create future leaders while, at the same time, introducing them to one of the largest and most vibrant HBCU campuses in the nation.”

The new scholars program isn’t the first time TMCF and Strada have come together. In the past, Strada has supported the TMCG scholarship program and leadership institute, and the latest collaboration is the fruit of discussion that began several years ago, said Daryl Graham, Strada’s senior vice president of philanthropy.

Strada promotes innovate collaborations that help underserved students achieve college access and career success, he said, and the evolving missions and strategies of both Strada and TMCF are aligned in that regard.

“We wanted more opportunities in partnership with an organization that we felt very comfortable with,” said Graham. “This was a great fit for us and for them.”