Alcorn State University’s Department of Fine Arts recently received funding from an organization that supports the creative arts. The National Endowment for the Arts rewarded Alcorn with a $15,000 grant Thursday, Feb. 4. The grant is part of the agency’s first round of recommended awards for the fiscal year 2021, totaling over $27.5 million.
The National Endowment for the Arts is an independent federal agency whose funding and support allows Americans to participate in the arts, exercise their imaginations, and develop their creative capacities. Through partnerships with state arts agencies, local leaders, other federal agencies, and the philanthropic sector, the Arts Endowment supports arts learning, affirms and celebrates America’s rich and diverse cultural heritage, and extends its work to promote equal access to the arts in every community across America.
Over the years, Dr. David Miller, professor and director of the Alcorn State University Jazz Festival, has spent significant time writing grant proposals that would support talent in the University’s Department of Fine Arts. Miller is thankful for the funding and looks forward to using it for Alcorn’s benefit.
“It always feels great to be the recipient of grants, especially large ones like this one,” said Miller. “I am always very appreciative of the grants I receive and am very thankful that I live in a country that supports the arts.”
Finding support for the annual Alcorn State University Jazz Festival is one of Miller’s yearly goals. He appreciates every grant agency, especially the National Endowment of the Arts, for providing resources to support the event.
“I have been writing grant proposals to support the Alcorn State University Jazz Festival every year since I started directing it three and a half decades ago. The festival is the longest-running and most prestigious jazz festival in the Mississippi region and brings in students, artists, and audience members from around the world. The jazz musicians who have served as guest artists for the festival are the very best and historically most important practitioners of the art form. The reputation of the festival’s 40-year tradition brings unparalleled notoriety to the Department of Fine Arts and the University. The scope, quality, and growth of the festival would not be possible without the support of the generous grants from various granting agencies and the support of the National Endowment of the Arts.”