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Last month, Alabama A&M University tweeted that newly-installed AAMU President Daniel K. Wims joined presidents from 14 historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs) and community colleges in Alabama at a Microsoft event held during The World Games.

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Earlier this year, The World Games announced a unique partnership with Microsoft to promote HBCUs and historically Black community colleges (HBCCs) during the games. Held every four years, World Games 2022 marked its 40th anniversary in July, and the first edition to be hosted in the United States since the inaugural World Games in Santa Clara, California, in 1981.

“Alabama has the largest number of HBCUs and HBCCs in the country,” said Miles College President Bobbie Knight in a statement. “HBCUs graduate an impressively disproportionate number of Black students, accounting for 20 percent of the country’s Black graduates, and 25 percent of African American graduates with STEM degrees attended HBCUs. It makes perfect sense for The World Games to use its global platform to showcase the talent coming from HBCUs across the state.”

The World Games 2022 HBCU Experience, presented by Microsoft, was designed to facilitate collaboration. On Instagram, Tuskegee University said it was excited to partner with The World Games, Microsoft, and other HBCUs to inspire students to pursue careers and business opportunities in technology.

“From the start, we wanted The World Games 2022 to be not only a sports experience but also a tremendous opportunity to bring lasting changes to Birmingham and to the entire state of Alabama,” said Jonathan Porter, board chairman of The World Games 2022. “Our partnership with Microsoft provides an excellent platform to work alongside Alabama’s HBCUs and HBCCs and ensure a diversified technology workforce that is well-prepared to lead our state and our world toward the future.”

Michael Ford, corporative vice president for global workplace services at Microsoft, and an Alabama A&M University graduate, said the partnership helps Microsoft fulfill its mission.

“Our partnership with The World Games 2022 enables Microsoft to help close opportunity gaps and deepen engagement with HBCUs and HBCCs,” said Ford. “Building diverse talent pipelines ensures we can create a diversified workforce to the benefit of our customers and society.”

The World Games 2022 HBCU Experience included virtual events, a Minecraft Challenge to explore game development, and a scholarship fund to help ensure the event creates positive change for HBCU/HBCC students across Alabama. Additionally, the HBCU Experience represented a gathering space where attendees found engaging content and tech activations designed to celebrate HBCUs.

During AAMU Day at TWG, the HBCU connected tech, talent, and culture to innovation and inclusion in a setting that featured an Xbox gaming lounge, coding activities, music beat studio, entertainment, and appearances from AAMU officials, students, faculty, staff, and alumni.

AAMU also highlighted its “metaversity” distinction with assistance from Dr. Rhonda Moore Jackson and Connie Mack; and its science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) capabilities from faculty, staff, students, and the dean of the College of Engineering, Technology, and Physical Sciences.

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