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The 11-year-old non-profit corporation known as UNCFSP, a separate entity from the United Negro College Fund, is working to change that, Hester says, even as federal dollars shrink and trends for doing business with the government are pointing away from grants and to contract awards, an arena where many minority institutions are not used to competing successfully.
That means, says Hester, UNCFSP must ramp up its more than 35-member team of proposal writers, researchers, federal government liaisons and procurement experts, trainers and workshop leaders who also track the dollars and opportunities, while assisting HBCUs, Hispanic-serving institutions, tribal colleges and underrepresented students with building capacity to compete for higher education research dollars and contracts.
"We recognize that to identify, go after and capture those new and emerging opportunities, you've got to have the hunters and people with the skill sets to go out and do it," adds Hester, who served as COO of UNCFSP until April.
DI: How is UNCFSP helping minority-serving institutions respond to these new and emerging business areas of national focus?