BLOOMINGTON - In Washington D.C., 42 African-American students learn the ins and outs of Capitol Hill through internships paid in part by State Farm Insurance Cos.
Across the country, "there are students in college today that wouldn't be if not for State Farm" said Don Tharpe, president and chief executive officer of the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation in Washington D.C.
Tharpe spoke to State Farm employees in Bloomington Wednesday, highlighting the company's partnership with the foundation to promote minority education. The presentation was part of State Farm's celebration of Black History Month.
Since 2000, State Farm has partnered with the foundation, providing internships and college finances while educating students on money management, retirement planning and healthy living, Tharpe said.
"State Farm is the largest supporter of the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation," he said. The company declined to release the amount of financial support it provides.
State Farm benefits too, Tharpe said.
"Teach people about buying homes, they'll buy homeowners insurance. Teach people about health, they'll buy health insurance," he said.
The foundation is a nonpartisan, non-profit, public-policy and research institute founded in 1976.
"We educate future leaders," Tharpe said. "Who will be the next Martin Luther King Jr.? Who will be the next John Lewis? Who will be the next Malcolm X?"