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NBCUniversal News Group awards $500,000 to Morgan State University for journalism diversity initiative

NBCUniversal News Group is partnering with Morgan State University in Baltimore to launch NBCU Academy, a new program aimed at training the next generation of diverse journalism talent.

Morgan State has received $500,000 through the multi-year partnership to fund scholarships and to develop a curriculum for hands-on learning. Journalists, executives and management from editorial and production teams at NBC News, MSNBC, CNBC and Telemundo will participate in the program as guest lecturers, the university said in a news release.

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“The NBCU Academy is a ‘put-your-money-where-your-mouth-is’ commitment to newsroom diversity,” said DeWayne Wickham, dean of Morgan’s School of Global Journalism and Communication. “It is a partnership of substance that strengthens our faculty and enhances the ability of our students to enter the journalism profession heavily armed with the skills they need to succeed.”

The partnership follows Comcast NBCUniversal’s $100 million pledge last June to help address systemic racism and inequality. The NBCU Academy initiative will distribute $3.5 million in scholarships and $6.5 million to 17 academic institutions that serve historically underrepresented student populations, including Morgan State.

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The media company also launched an action plan to diversify its employee base to be at least 50% women and 50% people of color, the announcement states.

The NBCUniversal announcement is the latest in a growing list of gifts and partnerships at Morgan State in recent months. Billionaire MacKenzie Scott donated a record-breaking $40 million to the school in December. A Minneapolis agency partnered with the school to redesign an advertising course. And in November the school announced a partnership with Purdue University to start a rocketry lab and training program

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