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The YARD Tour Pop-up event coming to Alabama A&M University campus (215 hits)

August 27, 2019
Contact: Tamara Whittaker Smith
Cell: 205.790.6012
Email: impact@hbcutheyard.com

The YARD Tour Pop-up event coming to Alabama A&M University campus

(Huntsville, AL) The YARD has launched a nationwide tour of HBCUs, and the next stop will be on “The Hill,” at Alabama A&M University, on Thursday, August 29, 2019.

The YARD is the HBCU (Historically Black Colleges and Universities) platform for connecting tech, talent and culture to advance innovation, infrastructure and inclusion. Erskine “Chuck” Faush, experienced media professional and CEO at FSE, co-founded The YARD to create new investment opportunities for students and employers, through the use of innovation-focused pitch competitions, debates, and immersive technology studios. “We are going to develop content that will showcase technology and the budding genius that we know are at HBCUs, enhance career pipelines with talent who will go from the classroom to the boardroom, and celebrate the culture that is unique on every HBCU yard.… (in addition) we will bring attention and awareness (to The YARD) at Classic sporting events,” says Faush.

The name itself - The YARD - references the central gathering spot for students and alumni on HBCU campuses. For many employers, HBCUs are an untapped source of tech, talent, and culture. At the same time, many HBCUs have limited funding for infrastructure and adequate facilities. The YARD matches student talent with employers for scholarships, internships, and jobs, while generating economic growth through collaboration with HBCUs, business, and community leaders.

Students can enter to win scholarships and internships by applying to The YARD’s THINK BIG NOW innovation pitch competition. Selected students will be invited to pitch their ideas at scheduled YARD pitch events. Winners will be awarded scholarships and internships, and receive mentorship and support to develop their ideas.

imerge, an event Faush produces in Birmingham for the Economic Development Partnership of Alabama (EDPA) served as the model for The YARD. imerge is the largest innovation and tech event in Alabama.

Earlier this year, at the U.S. Conference of Mayors, Birmingham’s Vulcan Materials Company announced its commitment to support academic excellence at HBCUs, particularly in the Southeast. "A more diverse workplace benefits our organization by bringing new perspectives to the business. It advances productivity and performance and improves our ability to appeal to a diverse marketplace," says Darren Hicks, VP of Human Resources, Vulcan Materials Company. Faush and Vulcan partnered on a program at Benedict College in South Carolina and launched the YARD with a $1M commitment to fund scholarships, internships, and grants.

In addition, The YARD partners with the Southern Region Minority Supplier Development Council, based in New Orleans, and Loop Capital, of Chicago.

Faush says, "We're empowering tomorrow's generation today by creating new investment opportunities for students and employers that translate into a more diverse and inclusive workforce, and greater return on investment.”

The YARD tour will continue this fall to HBCU campuses across the Southeast. Pop-up and YARD pitch events will be held in Alabama, Tennessee, Georgia, South Carolina and North Carolina.

For more details on the YARD and scheduled tour dates, visit www.hbcutheyard.splashthat.com.

Check out our video from the recent Alabama State University Pop-up: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1Ft7Upof9-a6_C0AUVModrEIBWQLegn9Z/view?usp=sharing

Posted By: Tamara Smith
Tuesday, August 27th 2019 at 7:43PM
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