College students around the country have a reason to raise a glass (or even a pitcher) to Diageo. The makers of Crown Royal and Diddy’s Cîroc Vodka, among other brands, have donated a combined $10 million to 25 historically Black colleges and universities across the United States.
The donation follows an influx of giving to the institutions following last summer’s racial justice protests for George Floyd and Breonna Taylor. “We are proud to partner with these esteemed institutions and to do our part to help shape a more equitable society by providing opportunities for future leaders,” said Debra Crew, President, Diageo North America in a statement. “This initiative further deepens Diageo’s commitment to making a long term and sustainable impact on underrepresented communities.”
The schools that will receive the funding include: Bowie State University, Clark Atlanta University, Delaware State University, Grambling State University, Hampton University, Howard University, North Carolina A&T University, Tuskegee University, University of Virgin Islands, Winston-Salem State University and Xavier University.
Diageo said it is committed to building a pipeline of leaders through an internship program in the coming years. The move is part of the firm’s goal of helping to ‘change the complexion’ of the alcohol sector. As such, Diageo will offer work experience opportunities for HBCU students.
“For over a century HBCUs have blazed trails in several disciplines for countless Black professionals and still remain a haven, and a refuge for many. This partnership supports pipelining of talent into business and industry.”