Millions of dollars in federal funds are helping students at Historically Black Colleges and Universities, around the state. Lawmakers and federal officials hope the investment will entice women and minorities to train in math and science fields.
Wednesday afternoon Congressman James Clyburn announced that Columbia's Allen University is one of eight HBCU's in the state getting a piece of a $9 million pie.
"There are counties in this state that are way behind the eight ball," said Congressman James Clyburn.
Clyburn is spearheading the efforts to fund programs at the schools throughout the Palmetto State and parts of Georgia. The U.S. Department of Energy is offering a helping hand to promote woman and minority involvement.
"I have been passionate about Science since I was very young," said Department of Energy Asst. Secretary Ines Triay.
It's a passion that Dr. Triay, wants to share.
"I would like to think that one day one of those students will receive a Nobel Prize, based on the seeds that we plant here today," said Triay.
But the self-proclaimed science enthusiast says cultivating those seeds of success, requires a community-wide effort.
"This is one of the highest honors," said Triay.
An honor that several colleges throughout South Carolina can appreciate.