The U.S. Small Business Administration Partners With The Divine Nine To Combat The Black Wealth Gap

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Many people are unable to reflect about the college experience without remembering the impact of fraternities and sororities. From the parties to the homecoming step shows, men and women from Black-Greek Letter organizations have been making social and societal impacts for over a century.

Referred to as the National Pan-Hellenic Council (NPHC) or “the Divine Nine,” the historical organizations have collaborated with the United States Small Business Administration (SBA) to address the wealth gap through Black entrepreneurship.

A Unique Partnership

Head of the SBA, Isabelle Casillas Guzman, signed the Strategic Alliance Memorandum along with President Reuben A. Shelton III, Esq. (Polemarch of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc.) on behalf of the NPHC.

Made official as a lead-in to Juneteenth, the new strategic alliance is evidence of the Biden-Harris Administration’s commitment to building equity for underrepresented communities across the U.S. According to the official SBA press release, the alliance is an agreement that will focus on improving financial literacy within underserved and disadvantaged communities.

A major thrust of the alliance will provide resources to Black entrepreneurs by introducing them to the SBA’s suite of tools for business growth. These tools include access to capital, government contracting opportunities, and counseling.

“This historic alliance between the SBA and the NPHC—the first of its kind for a government agency—will bring SBA’s valuable small business resources into reach for many small businesses and entrepreneurs, furthering the Biden-Harris Administration’s commitment to build equity and close historic wealth gaps that have held back America’s Black entrepreneurs, small business owners and their families and communities for generations,” said Administrator Guzman, according to the press release.

“The National Pan Hellenic Council and its affiliate organizations are very excited about this opportunity with the U.S. Small Business Administration,” Shelton III added about the partnership.”This collaboration will give NPHC members critical access to information that will promote small business growth and create jobs in all sectors of our economy.”

The Legacy Of Black-Greek Letter Organizations

The NPHC is comprised of nine Black-Greek letter organizations that include:

  • Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc.

  • Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc.

  • Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc.

  • Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc.

  • Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.

  • Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc.

  • Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc.

  • Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority, Inc.

  • Iota Phi Theta Fraternity, Inc.

The NPHC was founded on May 10, 1930 at Howard University in Washington, DC. to foster cooperative actions of its members in dealing with matters of mutual concern.

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