Black billionaire Robert F. Smith has recently announced his latest Student Freedom Initiative (SFI) tour, including upgrading cybersecurity systems for HBCU’s and pledging to aid with student tuition.
According to AfroTech, Howard University reported a breach to their security systems and contacted the FBI and Washington, D.C., which led the SFI to get involved.
“On September 3, 2021, the Howard University information technology team detected unusual activity on the University’s network. In accordance with our cyber response protocol, and to mitigate the potential for criminal activity, Enterprise Technology Services (ETS) intentionally shut down the University’s network to investigate the situation,” read a press release by Howard.
The SFI decided to step in and provide extra backing for the HBCU amidst the cyber-attack.
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“The SFI team is also providing complimentary (yes, free!) cybersecurity upgrades and support to help protect HBCUs and help them reach compliance with an unfunded federal mandate related to the federal student loan program,” said a representative for Smith.
The billionaire also recently pledged a $34 million donation to Atlanta’s historically Black Morehouse College, paying off the tuition of 400 graduated students.
“Each year, thousands of Black graduates from HBCUs across America enter the workforce with a crushing debt burden that stunts future decisions and prevents opportunities and choices,” Smith said in a statement posted on The Moguldom Nation.
“By addressing the financial stress of college and providing students with resources and community, we can finally broaden the talent pipeline and create a more diverse and thriving economy.”
Smith is successfully aiming to provide “alternative funding” programs without high-interest student loans. He mentioned that his goal is to close the racial inequity gap and give Black women and men the opportunity to equal financial playing field to their white peers after graduating.