Deputy Administrator Bonnie Glick’s Remarks at the USAID-HBCU Virtual Symposium

Speeches Shim

Thursday, October 1, 2020

[As Prepared]

Good afternoon, and welcome. I am Bonnie Glick, the Deputy Administrator at USAID.

Thank you to everyone for tuning in today. I know that working remotely can be challenging, so I appreciate each of you spending some time with us today.

You all know this already—but I can’t overstate how many contributions HBCUs have made, and continue to make, to the economic growth and prosperity of our country.

Given the proud history and many contributions of HBCUs, I am thrilled that the White House formally prioritized working with HBCUs in the 2017 Executive Order to “Promote Excellence and Innovation at Historically Black Colleges and Universities.”

A partnership and dialogue between our institutions makes a lot of sense—both USAID and HBCUs share the ideals of advancing the general welfare through a commitment to public service.

And we have had many successes with our HBCU relationships in the past.

We are extremely proud of our partnership with Howard University, which manages the Payne Fellowship program. Also, our Feed the Future program to end hunger has Innovation Labs all over the country—including many at HBCUs. You’ll hear more details about both of these great initiatives later today.

USAID’s work to help countries advance along their Journeys to Self-Reliance is multifaceted, highly specific, and at times, quite technical. We acknowledge that in order to execute our work successfully under these circumstances, expanding and diversifying the kinds of academic institutions we work with on research and development projects is crucial.

And we know that there is incredible research capacity and interest in international development work within your institutions. We have begun to tap into this expertise, and we’d love to continue building on the strength of our relationships with your faculty and students.

With that goal in mind, we recognize that lack of information is one of the biggest barriers in initiating partnerships between HBCUs and the U.S. Government.

And so, we are excited to discuss and explore these potential partnership opportunities at today’s symposium. This is a dialogue that I hope will continue to expand.

And one of those opportunities, which I am delighted to announce, is the pilot launch of USAID’s partnership initiative with Minority Serving Institutions.

This partnership pairs interested schools with one of our bureaus or independent offices, increasing your community members’ access to programs and initiatives in that particular bureau or office.

You will hear more about this exciting pilot later on from Alexious Butler.

Today’s discussion reinvigorates USAID’s important collaboration with HBCUs. We truly value the relationships we have built with your institutions, and I look forward to seeing what we will accomplish together in the future

Thank you, and enjoy the rest of the symposium.