SWEPCO ANNOUNCES $1 MILLION IN GRANTS FROM AEP FOUNDATION TO HISTORICALLY BLACK COLLEGES. UNIVERSITIES
Gifts are part of the Delivering on the Dream: Social and Racial Justice grant program Photos, video available for download: https://americanelectricpower.box.com/s/bpzw2qw9pm932hjcwvswi8spjjspucy5.
SHREVEPORT, La., July 2, 2021 – Southwestern Electric Power Company (SWEPCO) announced that the American Electric Power Foundation had awarded $1 million in grants to four historically black colleges and universities. Three of the four institutions are in communities served by SWEPCO – Southern University in Shreveport Foundation in Shreveport, La., Wiley College in Marshall, and Jarvis Christian College in Hawkins. The fourth is Bluefield State College in Bluefield, Va. Southwestern Electric Power Co. (SWEPCO) announced that the American Electric Power Foundation had awarded a $250,000 grant to Jarvis Christian College in Hawkins.
The gifts are part of the Foundation’s Delivering on the Dream: Social and Racial Justice grant program. It is a five-year, $5 million commitment to fund organizations with programs dedicated to advancing social and racial justice in communities served by SWEPCO’s parent company, American Electric Power (Nasdaq: AEP). In addition, the company is encouraging its workforce to make personal commitments as allies and act as catalysts for change.
“Diversity, equity, and inclusion continue to be critical components of our company culture. However, the past year has proven we still have work to do, both at AEP and in our communities,” said Janelle Coleman, vice president, Philanthropy and Community Engagement and President of the AEP Foundation.
“The Delivering on the Dream grant program puts our words into action. AEP and its Foundation are proud to partner with these organizations dedicated to empowering equity for our customers, neighbors, and employees of color.” The Southern University at Shreveport Foundation will use the $250,000 grant to create the STEM Academy to provide academic credits, hands-on experience, and scholarships to encourage high school students and adults of color to pursue a career in a STEM field.
The 2 Academy will track high school dual enrollment students and unemployed or underemployed adults. In addition, Wiley College will utilize the $250,000 gift to improve its STEM academic program, including renovating its science building, updating the campus internet network, and enhancing its STEM curriculum. The grant also will help update campus safety and security through lighting and emergency communication enhancements.
Jarvis Christian College will use the funds to develop and implement a Summer Science Academy for 9th to 12th graders to expand the pipeline of minority students who pursue STEM degrees at the college.
“These grants from the AEP Foundation will enable SUSLA, Wiley College, and Jarvis Christian College to expand their STEM programming. In addition, it will create more opportunities for minority students to excel in school and beyond,” said Malcolm Smoak, president, and chief operating officer of SWEPCO, which provides funding to the AEP Foundation.
“SWEPCO also is dedicated to building brighter futures for the communities where we live and work and remains committed to advancing justice and equity for our neighbors of color.” The other organizations to receive funds include the YWCA Columbus, the Delta Dental of Virginia Foundation, the Community Foundation of Greater Fort Wayne, and the Youth Services of Tulsa. In addition, the American Electric Power Foundation provides a permanent, ongoing resource for charitable in the communities served by AEP and initiatives outside of AEP’s 11-state service area. The Foundation focuses on improving lives through education from early childhood through higher education in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics, meeting basic needs for emergency shelter, affordable housing, and eliminating hunger.
AEP may offer other Foundation support to protect the environment, support healthcare and safety, and enrich life through art, music, and cultural heritage. The AEP Foundation is based in Columbus, Ohio.
Southwestern Electric Power Co. (SWEPCO) SWEPCO, an American Electric Power (Nasdaq: AEP) company, serves more than 543,000 customers in Northwest and Central Louisiana, Northeast Texas, and Texas Panhandle, and Western Arkansas. SWEPCO’s headquarters are in Shreveport, La.
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