Morgan Freeman and University of Mississippi Professor Linda Keena donated $1 million to the school to launch a legal studies center that focuses on policing.
The donation was inspired by the slew of violent police encounters involving unarmed Black Americans.
“Look at the past year in our country – that sums it up,” the Hollywood veteran said. “It’s time we are equipping police officers with training and ensuring ‘law enforcement’ is not defined only as a gun and a stick. Policing should be about that phrase ‘To Serve’ found on most law enforcement vehicles.”
The new Center for Evidence-Based Policing and Reform aims to “build relationships and share data with policing agencies as well as use the data to enhance the preparation of students in criminal justice,” according to a news release from the school. It will be “the only one of its kind at a Mississippi university and one of a few in the nation.”