This nonprofit is creating more equity with paid internships for Black students

The National HBCU Development program will work with 8 HBCUs to create opportunities for students
This nonprofit is creating more equity with paid internships for Black students
Photo credit: Shutterstock.com / Red_Eyes

The Local Initiatives Support Corporation has launched a new internship program called the National HBCU Development program for students at HBCUs. The mission is to help bridge the opportunity gap for students of color by offering community development mentorships and experiences that give young people a steppingstone when entering the workforce. 

Historically Black colleges like Johnson C. Smith, Howard University, Morehouse College, Edward Waters University, LeMoyne-Owen College, Lincoln University, Simmons College and Virginia State University are partnering with the nonprofit organization. Over the next two years, the program will begin placing more students in paid internships at local LISC offices or community development financial institutions.


A National Association of Colleges and Employers study showed that White students are more likely to obtain paid internships. In contrast, Black students are more likely to be unpaid interns. Also, Hispanic-American students are less likely to have paid internships.

Denise Scott, the president of LISC, shared on their website that the program is part of their work to “address systemic racial barriers that keep young people from gaining the experience and connections they need to compete for good jobs.”


Many of the schools involved in the program already have existing relationships with LISC through local efforts related to housing and economic development.

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