Lowe’s Donates $500K in Emergency Financial Aid to Support Students at UNCF’S 37 HBCUs

Financial assistance helps HBCU students stay on track to graduate

Lowe’s donated $500,000 to UNCF’s 37 historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) to award emergency student aid to financially needy graduating seniors. UNCF’s Emergency Student Aid (ESA) is a lifeline for UNCF-supported HBCU students with unanticipated needs or special circumstances such as the loss of a parent’s job. More than 200 seniors received aid during the 2016-17 academic year, allowing them to stay in school and on track to graduate. 

“College is quite expensive, but it is an investment that is certainly worthwhile,” said Quentin Perkins, a senior majoring in computer science at Florida Memorial University. “My parents are not able to pay for tuition out of pocket, so receiving this scholarship will enable me to continue to make progress toward my degree and to prepare for a career as an information technologist.” 

Since 2009, Lowe’s has partnered with UNCF’s emergency student aid program to provide $4.2 million in just-in-time aid. Thanks to Lowe’s long-term commitment to increasing post-secondary success for students at UNCF member schools, more than 1,700 students have been able to graduate on time. A UNCF partner since 1985, Lowe’s has donated more than $4.5 million to UNCF over the past three decades. 

“For more than 30 years, Lowe’s has been a vital partner in UNCF’s continuing mission to increase post-secondary access and success for students attending its member schools who need critical funding to earn their degrees,” said Dr. Michael Lomax, UNCF president and CEO. “We commend Lowe’s for their investment in better futures for students across the country.” 

“More than ever, a college education is foundational to building bright futures, inspiring leaders and stronger communities,” said James Frison, Lowe’s community relations director. “Scholarships and financial aid often provide the assistance needed for students having trouble paying for a degree so they continue and stay on the course. Lowe’s is proud to help make a college education a reality for many of our future leaders.” 

UNCF, the nation’s largest and most effective minority education assistance organization, launched ESA in 2009 to help recession-impacted students at risk of having to interrupt their studies and delay their degrees due to unpaid tuition balances, textbooks and room and board fees. In supporting UNCF’s ESA, Lowe’s offered support in a major way again this academic year to help students walk across the finish line. This current round of support from Lowe’s includes a total award of nearly $64,000 to the five UNCF-supported HBCUs in North Carolina: Bennett College, Johnson C. Smith University, Livingstone College, St. Augustine’s University, and Shaw University. 

"Lowe’s is a visionary leader in its class,” said Shaw University President Dr. Tashni-Ann Dubroy. “The reverberating ramifications of their investment go well beyond a student's graduation. It provides financial strength by eliminating the need for a family to secure a loan or credit card payment toward the final year of college. It gives students confidence and peace of mind heading into the critical senior year, allowing them to focus on internships, jobs and graduate school applications instead of finding part-time employment." 

To donate to UNCF’s Emergency Student Aid, visit www.UNCF.org/CESA

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About Lowe’s in the Community 

Lowe’s, a FORTUNE® 50 home improvement company, has a 50-year legacy of supporting the communities it serves through programs that focus on K-12 public education and community improvement projects. Since 2007, Lowe’s and the Lowe’s Charitable and Educational Foundation together have contributed more than $250 million to these efforts, and for more than two decades Lowe’s Heroes employee volunteers have donated their time to make our communities better places to live. To learn more, visit Lowe’s Open House digital newsroom or follow @LowesMedia on Twitter. 

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 20 percent of African American baccalaureate degrees. UNCF annually awards $100 million in scholarships and administers more than 400 programs, including scholarship, internship and fellowship, mentoring, summer enrichment, and curriculum and faculty development programs. 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 trademark, "A mind is a terrible thing to waste."® Learn more at UNCF.org, or for continuous news and updates, follow UNCF on Twitter, @UNCF.