Georgia Tech’s Office of Information Technology (OIT) was recently awarded a $995,550 grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) to enable network and research enhancements for nearby historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs).   

The NSF grant will fund at 100 percent a two-year project titled Promoting Research and Education at Small Colleges in the Atlanta University Center and at Tuskegee University Through Network Architecture Enhancements. Through this project, Georgia Tech, in collaboration with Southern Crossroads (SoX), will extend advanced networking services and cyberinfrastructure access to Clark Atlanta University, Morehouse School of Medicine, Spelman College, and Tuskegee University. The project includes a robust training and support program to ensure proper adoption and success for researchers and educators at participating institutions. The Atlanta University Consortium (AUC) Woodruff Library will benefit from network upgrades through the grant as well. 

Cas D’Angelo, OIT associate vice president and chief operating officer, serves as principal investigator for the project. He also serves as president of SoX, a Georgia Tech affiliate organization that serves nonprofit education, research, and government entities with cyberinfrastructure and global high-performance connectivity.  

“We started preparing a compelling proposal package that would demonstrate the need and value to the research community in early 2021,” said D’Angelo. “For years, we have been working to get institutions within the AUC — the oldest and largest contiguous consortium of African American higher education institutions in the U.S. — connected to the SoX regional network, given their proximity. This project provides us with that opportunity.”   

This project will also lay the groundwork for expansion to other HBCUs. 

The NSF has solicited proposals to support traditionally underserved institutions of higher education through partnerships with regional entities that have experience in high-performance research and education networking like Georgia Tech. Special emphasis has been placed on HBCUs, tribal colleges and universities, and other traditionally minority-serving institutions.    

To learn more, visit sox.net.