PNC Foundation Announces $ 16.8 Million Grant to Support and Develop Black-Owned Businesses through New Howard University Center for Entrepreneurship



Stimulates PNC’s commitment to supporting black entrepreneurship and economic empowerment

Posted: October 20, 2021 at 7:35 am MDT|Update: 1 hour ago

PITTSBURGH, 20 October 2021 / PRNewswire / – The PNC Foundation today announced a five-year term, $ 16.8 million grant to create the Howard University and PNC National Center for Entrepreneurship – aimed at creating resources and support for black business owners across the country. The center will support expanded opportunities for black entrepreneurship with enhanced nationwide education, leadership and capacity building resources and programs. All of this reinforces PNC’s overall commitment to increasing access to financial services and capital in LMI communities and to black and minority entrepreneurs and their small businesses.

PNC Howard University Logo

“We recognize that small businesses are the lifeblood of the U.S. economy, and ensuring the success of businesses owned by Blacks, LMIs, minorities, women and veterans is critical to ensuring a more diverse and inclusive economy. “, said the president of PNC. , President and CEO William S. Demchak. “PNC bridges some of the gaps black entrepreneurs face in the basic compromises of running a small business as well as accessing capital to improve or expand their operations.”

The PNC Foundation provides the five years, $ 16.8 million Grant to Howard University Create an Entrepreneurship Education and Research Center with the goal of serving the nationwide network of 101 Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) and their communities. This grant is part of the PNC $ 88 billion Community Benefits Plan announced in April, including a previously announced commitment of over $ 1.5 billion support the economic empowerment of black Americans and low and moderate income communities. The community benefit plan will provide at least $ 88 billion in the form of loans, investments and other financial support to benefit low and moderate income individuals and communities, people and communities of color, and other underserved people and communities over a four-year period.

“We are making significant progress in our commitment to support the economic empowerment of black Americans and low to moderate income communities. The five-year grant to create a Howard University and the PNC National Center for Entrepreneurship is a major part of that commitment, ”said Richard Bynum, PNC Corporate Responsibility Director.

The center will be located on Howard University campus, but will also include programs in four regional HBCUs, which will coordinate programs, research and other community outreach efforts in partner HBCUs across the country. The center will use a regional structure with Howard University, Morgan State University, Clark University of Atlanta and University of South Texas, each leading one of the four regions to enable effective coordination of programs and activities across all HBCUs, including education programs, research strategies and business outreach. One of the main goals of the center and its regional partners at HBCU will be to expand access to entrepreneurial opportunities by engaging students, business owners and communities of color in the growth of their businesses, in the goal of increasing the employment and wealth of students attending HBCU.

“Many HBCUs are already engaged in activities designed to enhance black entrepreneurship within the university and within their immediate communities,” said Wayne AI Frédéric, president of Howard University. “The Howard University and the PNC National Center for Entrepreneurship will leverage these efforts in a more focused and collaborative way to serve as a national resource center for HBCUs to enhance entrepreneurship education and empower young black entrepreneurs. The center will be an effective champion of interdisciplinary entrepreneurship education and entrepreneurial development within the African American community. i am grateful to Antoine Wilbon, dean of the Howard University business school, as well as Barron H. Harvey, Dean Emeritus of the School of Business, for helping bring this idea to fruition. It is truly their vision and leadership that has forged this partnership and will enhance entrepreneurial opportunities for future black business leaders. “

“In addition to improving entrepreneurship training, the center will be an important resource not only for HBCU institutions, but also for the community as a whole in terms of innovation, creativity, entrepreneurship, commercialization of technologies and regional technological and economic development, ”said Bynum. Educational programs, including those focusing on leadership development, financial management, technology and entrepreneurship, will be offered at the center as well as through virtual platforms with partner HBCUs.

Another goal of the center will be to help build the capacity of small black businesses by leveraging partnerships with local chambers of commerce and other institutions to provide mentoring and networking opportunities. The center will also partner with black businesses to improve credit, increase access to capital, provide undergraduate and graduate students hands-on experience working with black businesses and entrepreneurs, provide access to technology that can increase the success of black businesses, provide access to university procurement processes, and help apply for loans and access capital.

On Howard University
Founded in 1867, Howard University is a private research university that includes 14 schools and colleges. Students pursue more than 140 degree programs leading to undergraduate, graduate and professional degrees. The University operates with a commitment to excellence in truth and service and has produced one Schwarzman Fellow, three Marshall Fellows, four Rhodes Fellows, 12 Truman Fellows, 25 Pickering Fellows and over 165 Fulbright Fellows. Howard also produces more African American doctorates on campus. beneficiaries than any other university in United States. For more information on Howard University, visit

About the PNC Foundation
The PNC Foundation, which receives its main funding from the PNC Financial Services Group (, actively supports organizations that provide services for the benefit of the communities in which it has a significant presence. The foundation focuses its philanthropic mission on early childhood education and community and economic development, which includes the arts and culture and the promotion of racial and social justice. Thanks to Grow Up Great, its emblematic cause which started in 2004, PNC created a $ 500 million, a multi-year initiative to help prepare children from birth to 5 years old for academic and personal success.


Jeffrey Davis
(412) 762-4550
[email protected]

Franck Tramble
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SOURCE The PNC Foundation

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