UNCF & 3M Launch New Scholarship Program for St. Paul, MN Students to Attend HBCUs

WASHINGTON, Jan. 22, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- A $5 million gift from 3M to UNCF (United Negro College Fund) will create a new multi-year need-based scholarship program to support more than 100 Saint Paul, MN, students as they embark on STEM-related studies at Historically Black Colleges and Universities or at Florida International University (FIU). The UNCF 3M Science. Applied to Life. TM  Scholarship Program is open to underrepresented minority high school seniors attending Saint Paul Public Schools or charter schools serving St. Paul students and current first-year college students attending an HBCU or FIU who graduated from Saint Paul Public Schools or Saint Paul-serving charter schools. Over the next four years, up to 29 students majoring in STEM-related studies will be selected to receive scholarships and will be eligible to receive up to $25,000 over the four-year period, with funding available for emergency aid.

During the summer months, scholarship recipients will engage with 3M, learning first-hand from executives about their career journey, experiences and roles within the company. The intent is to create connections between UNCF scholars and 3M employee mentors.

“UNCF is excited to work with 3M to launch this new opportunity for students in the Twin Cities who plan to attend our nation’s HBCUs,” said Dr. Michael Lomax, UNCF president and CEO. “The scholarship and career development will change the lives of many students who may not have the financial means to further their education after earning a high school diploma. With this support, more students from Saint Paul will have the opportunity to earn their STEM degrees and begin meaningful careers in the 21st century workforce.”

Twenty-five percent of STEM degrees earned by African American graduates are earned at HBCUs. HBCUs graduated 46% of Black women who earned degrees in STEM disciplines between 1995 and 2004. Eight HBCUs were among the top 20 institutions to award the most science and engineering bachelor’s degrees to Black graduates from 2008-2012. HBCUs are the institution of origin among almost 30% of Black graduates of science and engineering doctorate programs.

Even with recent growth in the field, statistics regarding African Americans in STEM fields show their white and non-Black counterparts outpace them in key positions. Black and white students pursue STEM degrees at similar rates, but Black students in STEM fields do not attain comparable representation as it relates to their degree attainment. This new partnership with UNCF and 3M aims to bolster more underrepresented students into STEM professions.

“As part of our commitment to advancing social justice, we’re incredibly proud to partner with Saint Paul Public Schools and UNCF to provide STEM scholarships for students to attend Historically Black Colleges and Universities,” said 3M’s Chief Equity Officer, James Momon. “This collaboration is one of many milestones in our efforts toward creating greater equity for underrepresented populations.”

This partnership with UNCF is one part of 3M’s $50 million commitment to address racial opportunity gaps in STEM and Skilled Trades education. The company seeks to leverage its full capabilities, including philanthropy, to support more equitable outcomes for marginalized populations.

"Saint Paul Public Schools is grateful to 3M and UNCF for providing this opportunity to our high school graduates who aspire to pursue a STEM career at HBCUs," said Superintendent Joe Gothard. "These scholarships will open doors that may not otherwise be available to our students and set them on a path to success in college and beyond."

Scholarship applications are due by May 10, 2021. Scholarships will be awarded and administered by UNCF. Recipients will be notified by August 2021. Visit UNCF.org/3MScholarship to apply.

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About UNCF
UNCF (United Negro College Fund) is the nation’s largest and most effective minority education organization. To serve youth, the community and the nation, UNCF supports students’ education and development through scholarships and other programs, strengthens its 37 member colleges and universities, and advocates for the importance of minority education and college readiness. UNCF institutions and other historically Black colleges and universities are highly effective, awarding nearly 20 percent of African American baccalaureate degrees. Today, UNCF supports more than 60,000 students at more than 1,100 colleges and universities across the country. Its logo features the UNCF torch of leadership in education and its widely recognized motto, “A mind is a terrible thing to waste.”® Learn more at UNCF.org, or for continuous updates and news, follow UNCF on Twitter at @UNCF.

About 3M 
At 3M (NYSE: MMM), we apply science in collaborative ways to improve lives daily as our employees connect with customers all around the world. Learn more about 3M's creative solutions to global challenges at www.3M.com or on Twitter @3M or @3MNews

About Saint Paul Public Schools
Saint Paul Public Schools (SSPS) is one of Minnesota’s largest school districts with more than 36,000 students. Highly trained and deeply dedicated staff, cutting-edge academic programs, and strong community support are among the district’s hallmarks. Our student population is diverse, with students who speak more than 125 languages and dialects. Our Mission: Inspire students to think critically, pursue their dreams and change the world.


Khalilah Long
United Negro College Fund, Inc. (UNCF)
301.633.3928
khalilah.long@uncf.org
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