Venture capitalists (VCs) are among the most powerful people on the planet. VCs provide the capital to launch and scale the ideas of tomorrow and ultimately, the jobs and industries that will sustain communities. Only 1 percent of VCs are Black and 81 percent of VC firms don’t have a single Black investor. Those disparities, ultimately, impact Black entrepreneurs who are seeking VC funding — it rarely happens. Hadiyah Mujhid is a Historically Black College (HBCU) alum who is on a mission to change all of that through HBCUvc.
HBCUvc is a nonprofit organization that trains students attending HBCUs in venture capital and technology entrepreneurship. The organization offers a fellowship, which provides students with venture capital skills training, mentorship, and opportunities to build professional relationships with experienced investors and entrepreneurs. By giving students real world investing experience, HBCUvc empowers them to promote high-growth entrepreneurship on their campuses. Students, through this program, have the opportunity to not only learn about venture funding but actually fund promising startups in the Black community. HBCUvc is the real deal.
There is no shortage of genius within the Black community and specifically, amongst Black entrepreneurs. What is in short supply, however, are the individuals and mechanisms to identify and fund that talent. HBCUvc is training students on how to think like investors and in doing so, helping them to identify the best Black talent and support it in ways that aren’t typically happening, now. HBCUvc is on a mission to also provide investment dollars to promising startups in the Black community. As students develop their skills as investors and apply them to the real world, the true impact of HBCUvc will continue to grow, in dollars and cents.
HBCUs have always been prominent in the fight for freedom and uplift. The sit-in movement was birthed at North Carolina A&T. The legal battles that birthed civil rights legislation were fought by HBCU trained attorneys, like Thurgood Marshall. As Black communities fight for economic power, once again there is a movement taking shape at Black colleges and it is in the form of HBCUvc.