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Apple hosts an industry program for students from historically Black colleges and universities

Students at the Propel Center (Source: Propel Center)

Fifty students from a range of historically Black colleges and universities are to get an immersive two-week program with Apple.

The new program comes from the Propel Center, which was created in 2021 by one of Apple's earliest investments from its Racial Equity and Justice Initiative (REIU). In the same year, Apple also awarded $5 million to four historically Black colleges and universities (HBCU).

According to Variety, the Propel Center is now running working with 19 HBCUs for a 2024 Arts & Entertainment Industry Accelerator. It's a year-long program aimed at creating greater diversity in the industry.

"Creativity is central to everything we do at Apple," said Alisha Johnson Wilder, director of Apple's REIU, "and we're thrilled to help create more pathways into the arts and entertainment industries for HBCU students."

"Through Propel Center's programming," she continued, "we're helping expand opportunities for emerging creators from diverse backgrounds by ensuring these talented students have access to the technology, resources, and expertise they need to become leaders in the creative arts."

The accelerator starts on June 10, 2024 at Tennessee State University, and concludes at Atlanta's Clark Atlanta University in the week of June 16. During the program, students will have workshops, meet industry experts at Apple Music offices, and use Apple tools to create music and art.

"Harnessing the undeniable power of creativity and collaboration has enabled Propel Center and Apple to establish a nurturing and inspiring environment to cultivate the many talents of our HBCU students," said Propel Center president Dr. Lisa Herring.

"This year's accelerator marks a continued commitment from Apple and our industry partners to help address equity and diversity gaps in the arts and entertainment industry and other critical business sectors," she continued.

In 2021, Tim Cook talked about why Apple was starting the REIU program, and specifically about its reasons for backing the Propel Center.