Granholm will visit the South Carolina HBCU nuclear program

COLOMBIA, South Carolina – US Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm is traveling to South Carolina this week, stopping at a historically black university to tout what the Biden administration says is a commitment to fund nuclear engineering in such institutions across the country.

On Thursday, Granholm is expected to visit South Carolina State University’s nuclear engineering program, officials told The Associated Press. With U.S. House Majority Whip Jim Clyburn, an Orangeburg School alumnus, Granholm plans to discuss federal funding for science, technology, engineering, and math-related programs at colleges and universities. historically black.

The visit, Granholm’s first to South Carolina as secretary, comes as President Joe Biden and other officials tout progress in implementing the government’s $1 trillion bipartisan infrastructure package. administration, following setbacks on other issues, including voting rights and other economic endeavors.

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The trip to South Carolina also includes a roundtable discussion between Granholm and HBCU executives, as well as a visit to the Clemson University Wind Test Facility, which tests wind turbine transmissions. It follows Granholm’s discussion of similar fundraising initiatives during trips to other HBCUs.

At Howard University in May, she announced more than $17 million in funding to support college internships, research projects, and opportunities to strengthen investments in underrepresented HBCUs and other serving institutions. minorities. According to the administration, efforts like this underscore a commitment to help strengthen an energy-focused pipeline from these schools.

South Carolina State is the only HBCU in the nation to offer a four-year nuclear engineering program. In June, the Department of Energy awarded more than $2.85 million for nuclear and particle physics research internship programs for students at HBCUs and other minority-serving institutions.

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SC State is often a popular stop for national-level Democrats campaigning in South Carolina, thanks in part to the region’s heavily black and Democratic electorate, as well as its connection to Clyburn, the only Democrat in Congress. of the state and the highest ranking black member of Congress.

But Republicans, including former UN ambassador and South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley, also toured nuclear research facilities. a future race for higher office.

At Clyburn’s request, Biden gave the December commencement address to SC State graduates, saying he would “offer a historic investment to create and expand HBCU programs in high-demand areas such as cybersecurity, health, and social security.” ‘engineering and health care’.

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___ Meg Kinnard can be reached at

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