Monthly Archives: April 2017

HBCU Money™ Business Book Feature – Garbology: Our Dirty Love Affair with Trash

A Pulitzer Prize–winning journalist takes readers on a surprising tour of the world of garbage.

Take a journey inside the secret world of our biggest export, our most prodigious product, and our greatest legacy: our trash. It’s the biggest thing we make: The average American is on track to produce a whopping 102 tons of garbage across a lifetime, $50 billion in squandered riches rolled to the curb each year, more than that produced by any other people in the world. But that trash doesn’t just magically disappear; our bins are merely the starting point for a strange, impressive, mysterious, and costly journey that may also represent the greatest untapped opportunity of the century.

In Garbology, Pulitzer Prize–winning author Edward Humes investigates the trail of that 102 tons of trash—what’s in it; how much we pay for it; how we manage to create so much of it; and how some families, communities, and even nations are finding a way back from waste to discover a new kind of prosperity. Along the way , he introduces a collection of garbage denizens unlike anyone you’ve ever met: the trash-tracking detectives of MIT, the bulldozer-driving sanitation workers building Los Angeles’ immense Garbage Mountain landfill, the artists in residence at San Francisco’s dump, and the family whose annual trash output fills not a dumpster or a trash can, but a single mason jar.

digs through our epic piles of trash to reveal not just what we throw away, but who we are and where our society is headed. Are we destined to remain the country whose number-one export is scrap—America as China’s trash compactor—or will the country that invented the disposable economy pioneer a new and less wasteful path? The real secret at the heart of Garbology may well be the potential for a happy ending buried in our landfill. Waste, Humes writes, is the one environmental and economic harm that ordinary working Americans have the power to change—and prosper in the process.

The Finance & Tech Week In Review – 4/15/17


Every Saturday the HBCU Money staff picks ten articles they were intrigued by and think you will enjoy for some weekend reading impacting finance and tech.

Have your students (gr. 4-12) play the Stock Market Game to learn about #investing / Council 4 Econ Ed.

College students become economic forecasters by playing FREDcast for class / St. Louis Fed

R&D investment is increasingly concentrated in a few top firms. / HBR

This robot farmer can grow your food for you / WEF

 Lucid Motors Air Prototype Hits 217 MPH / Clean Technica

Where your children grow up will impact how much they earn as adults / WEF

Deep in the ocean, evidence that there may be a biosphere even further down than we imagined / Nat Geo

Hallucinogenic commonly drunk in South American religious rituals may help people w/ depression / New Scientist

Start-up uses biometrics to tailor music for good night’s sleep / New Scientist

Here’s why your shoelaces always come undone. / Science News


From HBCU To Bank CEO: 4 HBCU Alums Help Lead America’s Black Bank Revival

“If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader.” – John Quincy Adams

What good is a pipeline if it is not used, promoted, strengthened? Going to an HBCU or graduating from is not the beginning or ending of the African American ecosystem, but it is a key part of it. Unfortunately, the data shows that African American intellect and labor (even HBCU graduates) are primarily being used to build up firms owned by other communities. Recent data from the US Census shows that it is likely that less than one percent of African Americans work for an African American owned firm. It stands to reason that the subdata for HBCU graduates working for an African American firm is likely to parallel.

If HBCU business schools are not being trained to run African American firms and the unique path that they face, then what is the point of having them? Goldman Sachs, J.P. Morgan Chase, Bank of America, and Citigroup all have CEOs that attended PWIs (shocker) and even more to the point, attended Ivy League colleges. It would be fair to say that of the almost 7,000 banking institutions in the United States, if you were to subtract out the African American owned banks, that 75 percent of those banks would not be being run by those who went to HBCUs. However, that is exactly what is happening in the African American banking and private sector in general. The vast majority of our institutions operating in isolation, not in conjunction with each other. HBCUs are not banking with, training for, or encouraging their graduates in choir with African American banks and private sector so therefore the institutional leadership at most of our financial institutions and private firms is using a playbook not tailored to our needs.

However, there does appear to some change on the horizon. OneUnited Bank, headquartered in Boston, Massachusetts, and headed by one of the most powerful women in banking Teri Williams, although not an HBCU alum herself is showing herself to be a strong HBCU advocate, and the bank has two HBCUs banking with them in Roxbury Community College (MA) and Florida Memorial University (FL). Something that should lead to many future opportunities for graduates of the two institutions in the future both through internships and employment creating a future pipeline for more HBCU graduates to head up African American owned  firms. So who are the HBCU graduates sitting in African American owned banks c-suites helping lead the current #BankBlack revival that has seen millions of dollars in deposits over the past year?

Dr. Deborah A. Cole; Tennessee State University

As the president of Citizens Bank, headquartered in Nashville, Tennessee and noted as the oldest African American bank still in operation, Dr. Cole has led an impressive increase in the bank’s balance sheet with assets increasing 5.6 percent over 2016, third among the 20 AAOBs.

Ms. Jacquitta Powell Green; Alabama A&M University

A dual role, Ms. Green as she heads up Mobile, Alabama’s Commonwealth National Bank as CEO and Chairwoman of CNB Bancorp, the bank’s holding company. “Mrs. Green is the Vice President of Northside Exchange, which has offered financial services to the unbanked and underserved of the Mobile area for more than 30 years. In 2001, a national tax preparation franchise extended her an offer, and she established Envision Enterprises to offer unbiased and honest tax preparation services.”

Mr. James A. Sills, III; Morehouse College

Mr. Sills heads up one of the most prominent and well known brands among African American owned banks, Mechanics & Farmers’ Bank in North Carolina. The bank has changed its name to M&F Bank a few years ago in an effort to rebrand and attract a young demographic. “Prior to starting his own company in 2007, Mr. Sills was an Executive Vice President of MBNA America Bank (now Bank of America), the largest credit card institution in the world. In this capacity, he served as the Director of Corporate Technology Solutions for the $80 billion US Card Division.”

Ms. Evelyn F. Smalls; North Carolina Central University

Lastly, Ms. Smalls is the President and CEO of United Bank of Philadelphia. The only HBCU graduate heading up a bank outside of the South. “With over 30 years experience in banking and community development, Mrs. Smalls is responsible for the leadership and management of the Bank including setting the direction of the organization, communicating its vision and adapting the culture and operations to achieve success. Her leadership helped transform the Bank’s strategic focus into a “Business Bank” to ensure small businesses have access to affordable loans through the SBA 7A program.”


Unemployment Rate By HBCU State – February 2017







ALABAMA –  6.2% (6.4%)

ARKANSAS – 3.7% (3.8%)

CALIFORNIA – 5.0% (5.1%)

DELAWARE – 4.5% (4.4%)


FLORIDA – 5.0% (5.0%)

GEORGIA – 5.3% (5.5%)

ILLINOIS – 5.4% (5.7%)

KENTUCKY – 4.9% (5.0%)

LOUISIANA – 5.8% (5.9%)

MARYLAND – 4.2% (4.2%)

MASSACHUSETTS – 3.4% (3.2%)

MICHIGAN – 5.3% (5.2%)

MISSISSIPPI – 5.2% (5.5%)

MISSOURI –  4.1% (4.2%)

NEW YORK – 4.4% (4.6%)

NORTH CAROLINA – 5.1% (5.3%)

OHIO – 5.1% (5.0%)

OKLAHOMA – 4.6% (4.7%)

PENNSYLVANIA – 5.0% (5.2%)

SOUTH CAROLINA – 4.4% (4.4%)

TENNESSEE – 5.3% (5.4%)

TEXAS – 4.9% (4.8%)

VIRGINIA – 3.9% (4.0%)

*Previous month in parentheses.

African America’s March Jobs Report – 8.0%

Overall Unemployment: 4.5% (4.7%)

African America Unemployment: 8.0% (8.1%)

Latino America Unemployment: 5.1% (5.6%)

European America Unemployment: 3.9% (4.1%)

Asian America Unemployment: 3.3% (3.4%)

Previous month in parentheses.

Analysis: Overall unemployment dropped 20 basis points. All groups saw a decline, led by Latino America with 50 basis points.

African American Male Unemployment: 8.2% (7.8%)

African American Female Unemployment: 6.6% (7.1%)

African American Teenage Unemployment: 24.3% (24.3%)

African American Male Participation: 68.1% (67.8%)

African American Female Participation: 62.7% (62.7%)

African American Teenage Participation: 27.7% (30.0%)

Analysis: African American males saw an increase of 40 basis points, while females saw a decrease of 50 basis points in unemployment rates. African American teenagers saw a decrease of 230 basis points in their participation rate, the lowest number in the past five months.

CONCLUSION:  The overall economy added 98 000 jobs in March. A grave disappointment from the 235 000 jobs added in February and approximately half of the 180 000 many economist expected. Many will point to two major stumbling blocks in the economy right now being lack of tax cuts and infrastructure build that would provide stimulus to the economy. It is worth noting that over the past month, ETF indexes that short each of the major indexes have been begun to trend upward. A sign that the air maybe coming out of one of the longest bull runs after a recession in history.

African America currently needs 693 000 jobs to match America’s unemployment rate. An decrease of 45 000 from February.