HBCU Community Development Action Coalition Awarded $5.6 Million from the Wells Fargo Foundation to Address Racial Wealth Disparities at Lincoln University

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LINCOLN UNIVERSITY, Pa. — The Historically Black Colleges & Universities Community Development Action Coalition (HBCU CDAC) is proud to announce the launch of a comprehensive financial wellness initiative, Our Money Matters (OMM) for college students of color. This new $5.6 million initiative, funded exclusively by the Wells Fargo Foundation, is taking a more holistic approach to helping students who may be facing food and housing insecurity, college debt and other financial hardships to increase opportunities for financial inclusion and future economic success.

HBCU CDAC is launching OMM on the campus of Lincoln University.

Over the next three years, OMM will expand to 25 HBCU and Minority Serving Institution (MSI) campuses across the U.S., equipping roughly 40,000 students of color and the extended community with much needed financial capability skills, personalized tools for managing finances and student loans, and access to support services like career closets and emergency financial assistance. Over the long term, this initiative aims to accelerate opportunities for building generational wealth within communities of color to help to close the racial wealth divide.

“The initiation of the OMM program is especially timely as the economic burden of COVID-19 is projected to have a devastating impact on HBCUs, MSIs, and surrounding communities. The OMM program is a proactive solution positioned to address these issues and generational wealth disparities within communities of color. Our partnership with the Wells Fargo Foundation demonstrates our aligned interest in equipping our partner institutions and their surrounding communities with the financial tools needed to create wealth for generations to come”, said Ron Butler, CEO of HBCU CDAC.

“As a financial institution, we believe we have a responsibility to do even more to accelerate financial inclusion for people of color,” said Darlene Goins, head of Financial Health Philanthropy at Wells Fargo. “HBCUs and MSIs are known for helping generations of Black youth and other students of color achieve academic and professional success. Working with HBCU CDAC, we hope to support students who may be navigating complex financial challenges and give them a stronger foundation for future success and opportunities for wealth generation.”

Through its holistic “wrap around” approach to addressing the myriad of factors that have contributed to the persistent wealth gap, OMM’s programs and resources will engage, educate, support and scale financial capability and wealth creation in communities of color while disrupting and removing barriers to economic opportunity. The program has three primary components:

  • The Online Financial Counseling Hub, powered by iGrad, is a digital platform that helps students manage their day-to-day finances and build new skills and habits for life after college, including personalized tools for managing student loans, car loan calculator, investment analyzer, and access to certified financial planners.
  • The Financial Curriculum, developed in collaboration with academics and financial professionals, includes a wide variety of financial health courses and interactive activities, which faculty and staff can also integrate into general education and degree programs.
  • OMM Service Suite connects students with on-campus and community-based support services such as housing assistance, employment opportunities, and career closets that provide access to appropriate interview and work attire.

“Lincoln remains committed to supporting students to persist to and through graduation. This comprehensive education program teaches students financial literacy and connects them with resources to address their financial gaps,” comments Dr. Brenda A. Allen, president, Lincoln University.

To learn how to get involved as a student, participating school, or community partner visit: www.OurMoneyMatters.com



About HBCU Community Development Action Coalition
HBCU Community Development Action Coalition promotes, supports, and advocates for historically black colleges and minority-serving institutions (MSIs), community development corporations (CDCs), and the community economic development industry whose work creates wealth, builds healthy and sustainable communities, and achieves lasting economic viability. HBCU CDAC fulfills its mission of service to its members working in disinvested urban and rural communities through education, resource development, advocacy, networking, and training.

About iGrad
iGrad is a San Diego-based financial technology company that offers artificial intelligence-powered financial wellness solutions to more than 600 colleges and universities, more than 20,000 employers and more than 300 financial institutions.  iGrad’s Your Money Personality™ was recently recognized by the Institute for Financial Literacy with the 2020 Excellence in Financial Literacy Education (EIFLE) Adults’ Education Program of the Year award. iGrad is one of three 2020 honorees in the inaugural Barron's Celebrates: Financial Empowerment, after being selected by a team of judges for its contributions to improving the financial health and security of Americans. iGrad also received the 2019 Eddy Award for Financial Wellness by Pensions & Investments for its Enrich platform. For more information about the iGrad platform, visit www.igradfinancialwellness.com. For more information about the Enrich platform for employers and financial institutions, visit www.enrich.org.

Lincoln University, the nation’s first degree-granting Historically Black College and University (HBCU), educates and empowers students to lead their communities and change the world. Lincoln offers a rigorous liberal arts education to a diverse student body of approximately 2,200 men and women in more than 35 undergraduate and graduate programs.