Herald as the first “corporate HBCU graduate program,” Hennessy announced its plan to allocate $10 million to the Thurgood Marshall College Fund (TMCF). Over the span of the next 10 years, the donation will benefit graduate students seeking to continue their studies at Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) in the “corporate, social and economic systems.”

Giles Woodyer, Hennessy US’ senior vice president, said the goal of the "Hennessy Fellows" initiative aims to establish “a pipeline of highly qualified talent over the next 10 years and help prepare these future leaders for success.” Only 10 students will be selected. Those chosen will be notified in June and be able to put their resources to use in Fall 2019. Per each academic year, grad candidates will receive a $20,000 scholarship, a chance to enter a competition for a $10,000 grant that’ll benefit the community, and access to tools that'll further their career through networking and training outlets.

Dr. Harry L. Williams, president and CEO of TMCF, said this decision is more than a "financial" gift.  "When such a tremendously successful global brand like Hennessy invests in a higher education non-profit like ours, it tells the world that HBCUs and PBIs have value and are worth investing in, and TMCF is the best steward to carry out such a monumental investment," Dr. Williams said. "This is major, and it can't be overlooked as just a financial contribution, it is a real partnership that is a game changer for the students and our community."