Freemason groups to give nearly $500,000 in grants to UDC, H.D. Cooke

The University of the District of Columbia's student center, shown under construction in late 2015, is located at 4200 Connecticut Ave. NW. (Brian Kapur/Current file photo)

Local Freemason groups recently announced a pair of donations to benefit D.C. students: $400,000 in University of the District of Columbia scholarships and $30,000 for new computer equipment at H.D. Cooke Elementary School.

The UDC scholarships — funded by a collaboration of the District’s two leading Grand Lodges of Freemasons — will “provide emergency funds for students with critical and immediate financial needs,” according to a news release from the DC Grand Lodge and the Prince Hall Grand Lodge. A public ceremony will celebrate the donation at noon Saturday at the university’s Dennard Plaza.

The money for H.D. Cooke, located at 2525 17th St. NW, came from fundraising by three Masonic charities: the Masonic and Eastern Star Home, the DC Scottish Rite Foundation, and the Masonic Foundation of DC, according to another release. It honors Charles Iversen, a 97-year-old former Freemasons grand master and a 1932 alumnus of the school. H.D. Cooke will formally receive the funds in a ceremony at 10:30 a.m. on Thursday.