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The Thurgood Marshall College Fund (TMCF) recently announced a new initiative that will serve Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) in promoting research. The Dr. N. Joyce Payne Center for Social Justice will focus on social justice, advocacy, and policies for racial equity.

TMCF will work exclusively with HBCUs, a group of colleges and universities that recently celebrated their 150th year of supporting Black and African-American students across the country. HBCUs have a long and detailed history of engaging students. Thus, the partnership will work to create innovative policies that address barriers to equity for Black and African American achievements, according to a press release.

Dismantling white supremacy through policy change

With the new Dr. N. Joyce Payne Center for Social Justice, the TMCF plans to bring together students and academic leaders from HBCUs across the country. As a result, their goal is to integrate knowledge and experience through multi-discipline educational opportunities. For instance, these opportunities will allow for any HBCU to promote the creation of policies that address social injustice, racism, and white supremacy. Ultimately, the goal is to empower students to break barriers and achieve success.

Also, The Dr. N. Joyce Payne Center will include a broad focus, from advocacy and policy opportunities for individuals, to groups, to global communities, all meant to address the forces behind discrimination and oppression. Therefore, students will affirm their commitment to the Black community, and encourage the next generation of scholars and researchers.

 “There couldn’t be a better time to launch The Dr. N. Joyce Payne Center for Social Justice,” said Dr. Harry L. Williams, President and CEO of the Thurgood Marshall College Fund. “This is the moment when we must harness the resources within our HBCU network to more explicitly address social inequities.”

Dr. N Joyce Payne founded the Thurgood Marshall College fund, a coalition of nearly 50 member schools, in 1987. With the motto “Where Education Pays Off,” The Thurgood Marshall College Fund is an educational non-profit organization whose business offices are located in Washington, D.C.

Erika Stone is a graduate student in the Master of Social Work program at the University of Oklahoma, and a graduate assistant at Schusterman Library. A Chess Memorial Scholar, she has a B.A. in Psychology...