Philanthropist couple and Howard College alums Eddie and C. Sylvia Brown are making the biggest alumni donation the HBCU has ever acquired.

In accordance with a press release, the Browns pledged $5 million, which can be allotted towards Commencement Retention Entry to Continued Excellence (GRACE), a need-based fund established by Howard College President Dr. Wayne A. I. Frederick in 2014. 

“We’re extraordinarily grateful to Eddie and Sylvia for making this historic reward to Howard College,” Frederick stated within the launch. “The GRACE Grant has helped to eradicate monetary boundaries to schooling for Howard college students, and I’m thrilled that the Browns have been impressed to commit such a beneficiant reward to this essential fund. My hope is that college students can be impressed by their story and generosity and that others in our alumni neighborhood will take into account the numerous methods they, too, can affect present and future generations of Howard college students.”     

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The Browns say they’re giving again as a result of Howard offered them alternative as a neighborhood organizer assisted them in entering into the varsity once they had little cash rising up.

“I moved to Allentown, Pennsylvania after I was 15,” Eddie Brown stated, in response to the college. “We had a neighborhood organizer that may look out for the younger Black kids locally. He got here to me and my mom in the future and stated, ‘I used to be contacted by a lady who needs to assist a younger African-American scholar go to varsity.’ And it was my tenth grade English instructor, really, who was a graduate of Howard [who] stated, ‘It is best to go to Howard College.’”

Eddie later was awarded a full-ride scholarship as a result of his household’s monetary state of affairs that may enable him to graduate with a level in electrical engineering. He later went on to be founding father of Baltimore-based Brown Capital Administration, which right this moment manages $17.3 billion in property and is likely one of the oldest Black-owned asset administration corporations within the nation.

“We have been very lucky to have the ability to go to Howard,” Sylvia Brown stated. “I had scholar loans, and I understand how laborious that’s. Being from a household of 4, my dad and mom did the very best they might, however that was by no means sufficient to pay for all of the charges. And that’s been our mantra, to present to others and assist them at the least be capable to get an undergraduate diploma in order that they have a very good basis.”

“Our solely hope is that college students who profit from our contribution do their finest,” she added.

GRACE Grant supplies monetary reduction for college students and goals to extend on-time commencement charges. In accordance with Howard College, college students in this system expertise a 17 p.c improve in retention and a mean four-year commencement fee of 78 p.c, compared to those that didn’t obtain the grant.