The Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) announced plans to award roughly $500,000 to Clark Atlanta University to help develop a STEM entrepreneurship curriculum for students interested in the innovation economy.

The grant is part of a $2 million award given to three other HBCUs for projects focused on increasing their ability to compete for federal contracts and research funds.

“Historically Black Colleges and Universities served as the catalyst to creating the black middle class in America and will continue to be the incubator for minority business talent, innovation, and leadership,” said MBDA National Director Henry Childs II in a press release.

Howard University received over $350,000 to design a technical support model for 11 other HBCUs to compete for federal research funds. They will also use the funding to leverage partnerships with Federal laboratories.

South Carolina State University received just over $400,000 to launch training for HBCUs to learn how to compete for federal funds. Tougaloo College was awarded nearly $700,000 to help increase capacity for HBCUs to compete for federal contracts.

“These important schools generate billions in economic impact annually and are engines for job creation in their local economies across the United States,” said Childs II. “These grant awards will provide seed money for these institutions to pursue innovative projects and to build more revenue-generating infrastructures to better serve our nation’s future entrepreneurs and workforce.”