Wilson, a trained historian, added that, while PVAMU is known for its programs in the sciences, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM), the latest financial gifts and grants for the African-American Studies Initiative - $500,000 from the Mellon Foundation, $250,000 from the anonymous donor and an eligible $250,000 university match - will balance the "intellectual focus" of the university so that students have an opportunity to write, read and work from a broader context that humanities can offer.
The scholars will work with a cohort of faculty on developing new courses and redesigning existing courses across the PVAMU Core Curriculum.
PVAMU leaders hope that the university's efforts to bring an interdisciplinary and comprehensive understanding of the history and contributions of African-Americans to their students will send a larger message to historically Black universities and colleges (HBCUs) across the nation.
To begin with, PVAMU has launched four doctoral programs in the past seven years--in clinical adolescent psychology, electrical engineering, juvenile justice and educational leadership.
In addition to producing top nursing graduates, PVAMU has had a long history of producing engineers and educators.