Clark Atlanta University Is Among Eight Institutions to Benefit from the National Science Foundation’s $20M Investment to Transform Research Support

The AUC-GRANTED collaboration will expand research support and service capacity for four AUCC schools. 

Clark Atlanta University (CAU) is among the four Atlanta University Center (AUC) Consortium institutions that will benefit from a $14 million award sponsored by an initiative of the National Science Foundation (NSF) created to help reduce barriers to competitiveness and strengthen the research enterprise within the AUC. 

AUC-GRANTED supports a collaboration between CAU, Spelman, Morehouse College, and Morehouse School of Medicine as part of NSF’s Growing Research Access for Nationally Transformative Equity and Diversity (GRANTED) through a $20 million investment in eight institutions nationwide that aims to address the systemic barriers within the nation’s research enterprise for emerging research and minority-serving institutions.  

AUC-GRANTED seeks to expand the research support and service capacity within and across the AUC through activities and shared resources. The collaborative project is designed to augment the knowledge management and exchange of research leadershipin the AUC Consortium and at other Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) and regional institutions; enhance research developmentcapacity to support ideation and competitive proposal development; strengthen the research administrationinfrastructure at AUC institutions; and create and implement an AUC-wide Office for Research and Technology Commercialization.  

The goal is to establish a hub that promotes equity in the national research ecosystem and serves as a model for other HBCUs and emerging research institutions (ERIs). 

“Clark Atlanta University has always held a high regard to develop innovative, cutting-edge research, and this amazing award helps us strengthen our trajectory for greater innovations and success,” said President George T. French, Jr. “It also gives us the welcomed advantage of working collaboratively with our AUC neighbors, which exponentially expands our resources so that together, we will develop a national model for other institutions who may be striving to break barriers in scientific funding.”  

Across the research enterprise, organizations face varying challenges with access to research support and service infrastructure, creating obstacles to widespread participation in national research opportunities.  

“This $20 million investment through NSF’s GRANTED initiative reflects our commitment to breaking down barriers in research access. By strategically supporting collaborations like the Atlanta University Center, we are committed to creating a transformative hub, setting the standard for equity and diversity in the national research landscape,” said NSF Director Sethuraman Panchanathan. “These projects underscore our dedication to empowering institutions, fostering inclusivity and propelling the entire research ecosystem towards greater heights of excellence.”  

GRANTED also supports a project by Pomona College and University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth, that will study the challenges faced by researchers at emerging and primarily undergraduate institutions to inform funding agencies and intermediaries as they seek to strengthen the participation of these institutions; a project that will establish research capacity-building institutes at Hispanic-Serving Institutions; and an Iowa State University project that will implement a cross-institutional research administration internship program to strengthen research infrastructure in six ERIs within an NSF Established Program to Stimulate Competitive Research jurisdiction. 


About Clark Atlanta University  

Clark Atlanta University was formed with the consolidation of Atlanta University and Clark College, both of which hold unique places in the annals of African American history. Atlanta University, established in 1865 by the American Missionary Association, was the nation’s first institution to award graduate degrees to African Americans. Clark College, established four years later in 1869, was the nation’s first four-year liberal arts college to serve a primarily African American student population. Today, with nearly 4,000 students, CAU is the largest of the four institutions (CAU, Morehouse College, Spelman College, and Morehouse School of Medicine) that comprise the Atlanta University Center Consortium. It is also the largest of the 37-member UNCF institutions. Notable alumni include: James Weldon Johnson, American civil rights activist, poet, and songwriter (Lift Every Voice and Sing – “The Black National Anthem”; Ralph David Abernathy, Sr., American civil rights activist; Congressman Hank Johnson, Georgia District 4; Kenya Barris, American award-winning television and movie producer; Kenny Leon, Tony Award-winning Broadway Director; Jacque Reid, Emmy Award-winning Television Personality and Journalist; Brandon Thompson, Vice President of Diversity and Inclusion for NASCAR; Valeisha Butterfield Jones, Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer at the Recording Academy. To learn more about Clark Atlanta University, visit 

Jolene Butts Freeman, AVP Media Relations and Communications  


223 James P. Brawley Drive, SW  

Atlanta, Georgia 30314