Lowe’s donates $1.5M to advance learning, fund research at UNC Charlotte

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Updated: Apr. 6, 2021 at 8:42 AM EDT
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CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - Lowe’s is donating $1.5 million to the College of Computing and Informatics (CCS) at UNC Charlotte. The funding will help strengthen the university’s position as a leading technology hub and talent provider for Lowe’s.

“We are actively hiring to build the best tech team in retail, and artificial intelligence and machine learning play increasingly important roles in how we serve customers and our associates,” said Seemantini Godbole, executive vice president and chief information officer at Lowe’s. “We are excited to extend our partnership with UNC Charlotte with this donation, which highlights our mutual dedication to developing skilled technology professionals and improving the economic health of our hometown Charlotte region.”

The donation will establish the Lowe’s Endowed Chair in Computer Science and the Lowe’s Technology Innovation Fund, which will provide $50,000 annually in support of innovative research.

Lowe’s says the chair endowment will enable UNC Charlotte to recruit a nationally recognized teacher, scholar and computer science leader whose research focuses on artificial intelligence and machine learning.

The donation will also help to remove financial hurdles for students and staff through the fund’s support.

“As the number one producer of African American, Hispanic and female computer science graduates in North Carolina, CCI will use the fund to increase equity, diversity and inclusion in the technology field, including bolstering representation from women and those from underrepresented communities,” Lowe’s says.

The second-floor atrium in Woodward Hall, home to CCI, will be named in Lowe’s honor.

“We are so thankful to Lowe’s for their continued commitment to strengthening research and creative expression across our University,” said Fatma Mili, dean of the College of Computing and Informatics. “This partnership is aligned with the shared commitment between UNC Charlotte and Lowe’s to make a significant impact through the continued innovation of our faculty and students and the education of the next generation of computer scientists.”

Lowe’s says they have a long-standing partnership with UNC Charlotte, and CCI’s broad expertise and large talent pool were among the reasons Lowe’s selected the Charlotte region for the Lowe’s Tech Hub and its expanded technology presence.

On April 9, CCI will host its inaugural Technology Day in partnership with Lowe’s. During the virtual event, a panel of senior Lowe’s executives will discuss technology trends in a post-COVID environment, and Mili and Godbole will explore the latest advances being developed by CCI and Lowe’s respectively. Register to tune in.

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