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The PROPEL Center Launches 'PROPEL Learn' App for HBCU Students

The PROPEL Center, the first innovation hub created to support Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs), today announced the launch of PROPEL Learn, a student-focused app designed to revolutionize the way HBCU students prepare for future job success. PROPEL Learn will provide culturally-responsive content, curriculum and industry-aligned micro-credentials that are co-developed by industry experts, distinguished HBCU faculty, and notable workforce collaborators — making this a groundbreaking app for HBCU students at no cost.

Developed in collaboration with Honor Education, pioneers in developing teaching and learning software, the PROPEL Learn app will help accelerate learning and bridge the gap between academic preparation and real-world career readiness for HBCU students. Its interface and distinctive engagement features will connect learners to in-depth interaction with facilitators and provide collective feedback from peers outside the classroom. Industry executives and entrepreneurs will share deep insights and unique perspectives to offer students a rare opportunity to learn from those who have achieved sustained success in their careers.

"PROPEL Learn is a pioneering app that empowers HBCU students with the latest technological innovations, shaping the future of our workforce. Our unique approach of co-developing micro- credentials with industry partners and HBCU faculty ensures an unparalleled learning experience for the entire ecosystem of learners," said Dr. Camesha Whittaker, Senior Vice President of Innovation and Design at PROPEL. "With the ability to reach nearly 300,000 students, PROPEL Learn leaves no institution behind. It is the ultimate solution for advanced engagement, upskilling, and an indispensable companion to all HBCU institutional offerings.”

Upon completion of PROPEL Learn courses, students will receive micro-credentials that provide recognition of industry-aligned competencies and specialized skills attained through short coursework, empowering students with material assets that showcase their proficiencies. In today’s rapidly changing workforce, earning these credentials will help ensure HBCU students are positioned to excel in a competitive job market.

“We’re delighted to support PROPEL Learn by developing courses that harness the power of technology coupled with world-class instruction to expand skills students need for jobs of the future,” said Lisa Jackson, Apple's vice president of Environment, Policy and Social Initiatives. “This new app will help prepare learners for opportunities across key industries, all of which will benefit from the critical perspectives HBCU graduates and the next generation of Black leaders have to offer.”

Free to students, registration is now open for PROPEL Learn courses that are set to begin on September 11. Among the offerings are courses that PROPEL developed in collaboration with founding partner Apple covering arts & entertainment, AIML, and coding with Swift. A professional development course titled ‘Discovering Your Professional Superpowers,’ developed in partnership with The Walt Disney Company, will also be available. Additionally, all registered HBCU students on the app will have access to learnings focused on the energy industry, provided by Southern Company, one of PROPEL’s founding partners.

“The launch of the PROPEL Center’s virtual community signals another milestone in the commitment to create an innovation hub for technology and learning for HBCU students,” said Chris Womack, president and CEO of Southern Company. “The online community establishes a new avenue for PROPEL and partners like Southern Company to amplify HBCUs and cultivate opportunities and accelerated learning experiences for students outside of the classroom. It also strengthens our company’s continuous efforts to support the next generation of diverse innovators and leaders.”

This summer, PROPEL conducted a pilot of the app to garner student input and feedback. Student responses have been positive. An Xavier University student among the cohort of learners enrolled in the ‘Discovering Your Professional Superpowers’ course said "I increased my awareness of networking, professionalism, and learning to adapt to new workspaces while preserving my individuality. I am grateful the PROPEL Learn app offered asynchronous courses and weekly check-ins for the students who could participate.”

Available on iOS and Android, the app will provide HBCU students with a competitive edge, delivering personalized career guidance and mentorship opportunities. Download the free app and join the conversation on social media at #PROPELForward and #PROPELLearn.



About PROPEL Learn

PROPEL Learn is an app designed to empower Historically Black College and University (HBCU) students in their pursuit of future career success. With a user-friendly interface and an array of innovative, culturally-curated features, PROPEL Learn aims to bridge the gap between HBCU students and their professional aspirations. Through personalized career guidance, skill development resources, and interactive networking opportunities, the app strives to foster inclusivity and diversity within industries, shaping a more promising future for HBCU students. To learn more about the PROPEL Learn App and the available micro-credentials,



About The PROPEL Center

Supported by founding partners Apple and Southern Company, PROPEL is the first innovation hub built for the future of HBCUs. PROPEL is committed to creating opportunities that uplift individuals and strengthen communities, bridging the gap between academia and industry. Through a robust virtual platform and on-campus activities at partner institutions, PROPEL delivers innovative curricula and unprecedented leadership and mentorship opportunities to produce the next generation of Black leaders.


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