During the Thurgood Marshall College Fund’s (TMCF’s) 26thAnnual Awards Gala, Wells Fargo announced a new $3.3 million financial investment to the organization, making the financial institution the largest corporate funder of TMCF. The black-tie Gala, held in Washington, DC last night, concluded the scholar leadership development conference for nearly 500 students from across the nation who attend publicly-supported Historical and Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs). From both the TMCF Leadership Institute and Gala, TMCF raised more than $4.1 million to further the dreams of college students.
“Wells Fargo’s newly expanded partnership with the Thurgood Marshall College Fund is a reflection of our longstanding commitment to the invaluable work it does in the community,” said Tim Hanlon, head of Strategic Philanthropy and Partnerships for Wells Fargo. “No other organization has the potential to help so many students at the nation’s 47 publicly-supported historically black colleges, universities and law schools. One of our core company values is helping build strong communities, and education is the lifeblood of that strength.”
Wells Fargo’s gift will support capacity building efforts for TMCF’s 47 member-schools and the nearly 300,000 students on these campuses.
“We are extremely grateful to Wells Fargo, a long-standing partner of TMCF,” said TMCF President and CEO Johnny C. Taylor, Jr. “Our Gala theme is ‘Developing Minds, Delivering Dreams’ and this generous gift from Wells Fargo will go a long way in ensuring that TMCF furthers its mission to doing just that.”
Throughout the year, the Thurgood Marshall College Fund hosts various fundraising events and efforts to continue building its scholarship and internship programs as well as to offer leadership development programs like the TMCF Leadership Institute [held this past week]. As TMCF wrapped up an exciting Institute, it hosted over 1,500 distinguished guests at its annual black-tie gala on the evening of November 12th, which included an impressive group of Congressional Members, Fortune 500 executives, and HBCU Presidents/Chancellors.
“The increased costs of college, coupled with stricter PELL grant and PLUS loan requirements, limits college access for thousands of students today,” said Taylor. “Every five seconds a student drops out of college usually because of money. For this reason, each year TMCF brings together the nation’s most influential people to recognize our honorees, celebrate HBCUs, and to raise money for nearly 300,000 students who attend their institutions.”
Entertainment Icon LL COOL J served as Host. Grammy award-winning artist Regina Belle, the entertainer for the evening, paid tribute to the nearly 500 students in the room with her award-winning song, “A Whole New World” [from Disney’s 1992 film,“Aladdin”]. TMCF also shared the evening with George Lopez and Trey Songz as they honored the work and legacies of Sheila C. Johnson (CEO of Salamander Hotels & Resorts and BET Co-Founder); Dr. William R. Harvey (President of Hampton University); Admiral Michelle Howard (Vice Chief of Naval Operations, U.S. Navy); and, Joshua I. Smith (Chairman and Managing Partner, Coaching Group, LLC).
“The increased costs of college, coupled with fewer PELL grant opportunities and tougher PLUS loan requirements, limit college access for thousands of students today,” said Taylor. “Every five seconds a student drops out of college usually because of money. For this reason, each year TMCF brings together the nation’s most influential people to recognize our honorees, celebrate HBCUs, and to raise money for nearly 300,000 students who attend TMCF institutions.”