Dennis Alvord, Deputy Assistant Secretary and Chief Operating Officer of the US Economic Development Administration, visits SAU

(Photo from left to right) United States EDA Deputy Assistant Secretary Dennis Alvord, North Carolina Secretary of Commerce Machelle Baker Sanders, Raleigh Mayor Pro Tem Corey Branch and Raleigh City Councilwoman Stormie Forte.

On Monday, May 9, 2022, U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) Deputy Assistant Secretary and Chief Operating Officer Dennis Alvord met with local and state leaders at Saint Augustine University (SAU) to discuss a recent $400,000 US bailout grant from EDA awarded to support workforce training efforts and strengthen public health and health equity resources at the university.

“Saint Augustine University has a strong heritage of providing high quality education and training, as well as promoting equitable access to health care,” Alvord said. “It was truly inspiring to hear about the shared vision and coordinated efforts already underway for the St. Agnes site from state and local authorities, and to learn from student leaders about the impact the University has had on their education – and their future.EDA is honored to work with Saint Augustine University and other HBCUs in our nation to advance equitable economic development.

The funding is part of the EDA’s $500 million U.S. bailout Economic Adjustment Assistance ProgramWhich one is helping hundreds of communities plan, build, innovate and get people back to work through projects designed to meet local needs.

“I am thrilled to see that the EDA recognizes the value our university brings to reimagining the community around us,” said SAU President Dr. Christine Johnson McPhail. “The preservation of St. Agnes plays a vital role in executing our strategic initiative to meet the complex needs of our surrounding community.”

Erected in 1896, St. Agnes Hospital National Monument served as a training school for black nurses and the only hospital caring for African Americans regionally for many years. Most of the black nurses who fought in World War II received training at Sainte Agnès. Most notably, after being turned away from other hospitals, former heavyweight champion Jack Johnson died in Saint Agnes from injuries he sustained in a car crash in 1946. The hospital closed its doors in 1961, but its remains remain standing in the shape of a cross. .

“The feasibility study can share with us what we can do there and how best to preserve what’s left,” said SAU Vice President for Economic Development and External Relations Veronica Creech. in a report. “We want to honor that history and everything that happened there.”

Coverage of the visit by ABC 11 Eyewitness News can be found here.

Click here to learn more about SAU’s reinvention of St. Agnes Hospital.

About Saint Augustine University

Founded in 1867 by the Episcopal Diocese of North Carolina, Saint Augustine University’s mission is to support a learning community in which students can prepare themselves academically, socially, and spiritually for leadership in a complex, diverse, and changing world. rapid evolution.

About the United States Economic Development Administration (

The mission of the United States Economic Development Administration (EDA) is to lead the federal economic development agenda by promoting competitiveness and preparing regions across the country for growth and success in the global economy. An agency of the U.S. Department of Commerce, EDA invests in economically challenged communities to create jobs for American workers, promote American innovation, and accelerate long-term sustainable economic growth.

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