Today’s Official Google Blog post highlights the vital role that Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) continue to play in the development of the African-American community, and demonstrates our ongoing commitment to ensuring these schools have the tools and resources they need to continue to blaze new trails and empower their students. As a recent grad from North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University (NC A&T), I found the relationship between Google and HBCUs to be especially meaningful.

As with all schools, Google provides HBCUs with free and powerful tools for teaching and learning that help students, staff and faculty be more efficient, productive and collaborative on campus. At last week’s HBCU Summit, it was exciting to see nine more HBCUs join the Google Apps for Education family—in addition to the other 13 HBCUs that are already using Apps on campus—including my own alma mater.

As last year’s president of the Student Government Association of NC A&T, I remember countless conversations with students about how they wanted to see a better email system. The students wanted more up-to-date and user-friendly features to help them work and communicate better with fellow students and faculty. When I sat with campus administrators to present the idea of upgrading to Google Apps for Education, I never realized how simple the task could actually be.

I’m proud to see my alma mater on the cutting edge of innovation as they move to Google Apps for Education. Making the switch to Google Apps will give the A&T community the convenience and mobility that it desires. Barbara Ellis, Vice Chancellor of Information Technology says, “At NC A&T, we are always looking for opportunities to enhance services to our students. Google Apps for Education brings our email implementation into the forefront and allows us to embrace a technology platform that is relevant to our student population. Our relationship with Google is one that we can continue to build on.”

I am elated to be a part of a company that gives back to universities like my alma mater, and I’m honored to be a graduate of an HBCU gone Google. I know firsthand that everyone at North Carolina A&T State University—the faculty, staff, administration, student body and alumni—welcomes progress, change and innovation. Today, we proudly welcome Google!

The NC A&T team with Googlers at the HBCU Summit