Paine College Announces Historic Partnership - Road to Epic Transformation

June 20, 2023

Paine College Partners with EAB, UNCF, Bank of America, Augusta National Golf Club and the Community Foundation for the CSRA to Transform the 141-Year-Old HBCU

Augusta, Ga - Today, Paine College officials announced a historic partnership with education company EAB, United Negro College Fund (UNCF), Bank of America, Augusta National Golf Club, and the Community Foundation for the Central Savannah River Area (CSRA) that will support the 141-year-old HBCU's vision of becoming one of America's top-performing private four-year institutions. The partners are collaborating on a groundbreaking 10-year transformation plan designed to preserve, transform, and elevate the institution.

"This is a pivotal moment for Paine College," commented Board Chairman Michael Thurmond, ‘75. "The Board of Trustees stand united in our support of this carefully crafted partnership that will elevate the trajectory of the College while preserving the values upon which this institution was founded." 

EAB will act as project leaders and work with Paine College to leverage many of the same best practices the company has used to boost student and institutional success at more than 2,500 partner institutions. EAB first began its work with Paine last year through the Way Forward Initiative, made possible by collaboration with Bank of America and Augusta National Golf Club.

"This transformation plan will do more than give Paine a facelift," said Dr. Cheryl Evans Jones, President of Paine College. "We look forward to working with our partners to help grow our enrollment, improve educational outcomes for our students, and make curricular improvements at the institution."

UNCF recently selected Paine College to participate in Cohort 3 of UNCF's Institute for Capacity Building Transformation Network. The Institute is designed to help HBCUs and Predominantly Black Institutions increase student enrollment, improve financial viability and boost both student and institutional outcomes.

"Paine College's Transformation Plan builds on UNCF's vision and is a customized way to enhance our mission of over 79 years to help HBCUs become stronger, more effective and more self-sustaining," said UNCF President and CEO Dr. Michael L Lomax. "This is just the beginning."

"Bank of America is pleased to provide support to strengthen and sustain an institution that has impacted our local community and beyond," said Ora Parish, President, Bank of America Greater Augusta / Aiken. "This transformation plan will have lasting and beneficial impacts on Paine College and surrounding communities."

Supporting the transformation plan, Bank of America and Augusta National Golf Club will continue ongoing efforts to promote Paine College's long-term advancement and success. In addition to facilitating Paine's inclusion in the Way Forward Initiative, the two organizations partnered to underwrite an Executive Leader on Loan supporting the Office of Institutional Advancement last year.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, Bank of America also donated personal protective equipment to the College, as well as resources to establish an interactive online platform to enable both in-person and remote learning. In 2020, Augusta National established the Lee Elder Scholarships at Paine College for a student on the men's and women's golf teams and funded the creation of its first women's golf program.

Shell Knox Berry, President and CEO of the Community Foundation for the CSRA said, "Our organization and the local community are so excited for this partnership so that we can collaborate to differentiate the value that Paine offers students and reach new heights in student outcomes."

As part of the transformation plan, Paine College will hire an executive-level Transformation Leader to guide the initiative, improve administrative oversight and increase capital investment.

Paine College welcomes additional partners interested in providing financial or other support for the transformation plan as its development continues. 

For more information, contact Helene Carter, VP of Institutional Advancement, at (706) 821.8323 or via email:

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