Tag: engineering

Girls From Displaced Families Get Introduction to College and Engineering at Cal State Long Beach

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Courtney Shumate, 10, of Compton, is spending a week living at Cal State Long Beach, learning about college life and engineering. Twenty-nine girls participated in the program August 8, 2013, in Long Beach. During this workshop, the participants built prosthetic arms. (Francine Orr, Los Angeles Times / August 7, 2013)

Submerged underwater, a robot built out of PVC pipes snaked back and forth near some foam “sea sponges.”  Next to the small wading pool, 11-year-old Nailah Lewis intently worked a set of controls on top of a wired plastic box. Her electrical engineering experiment had entered its final testing phase.  The task: Design a tool to pick up objects underwater.  Around the pool, a group of young girls leaned over the edge, dangling their hands in the water and shouting encouragement. Nailah’s 8-year-old sister, Ayailah, called out: “Come on, Ni Ni!”

Watching proudly nearby with a camera in hand was Nailah’s mother, Dana Lewis, 39, who is determined to see her both young daughters go to college.  She found a positive motivating force in a new Cal State Long Beach program.  The program, “Engineering Girls — It Takes a Village,” is unusual in its focus on recruiting young girls, ages 9 to 15, from displaced families.  Over the last four months, school officials worked with the Century Villages at Cabrillo, a transitional housing community, to recruit girls and bring them to the university in August for one week of engineering workshops.

Officials said that the program, which began Aug. 5 and ended Sunday, was specifically designed for girls because the engineering field is dominated by men. But coordinators also aimed to expose an underrepresented community with limited opportunities in science, math and engineering.  It came along with a full taste of college life, with the girls sleeping in the dorms and eating three all-you-can-eat meals a day.

Of the 29 girls who participated, 25 came from homeless families. All were African American, and most lived in single-parent homes.  Three were being raised by their grandparents.  “A lot of these girls are underprivileged, so an experience like this not only changes and impacts their lives, but re-creates their future,” said Lewis, who was one of several women who accompanied their daughters and participated in the program. Lewis moved into the Villages with her mother and two daughters when it opened five years ago.

Continue reading “Girls From Displaced Families Get Introduction to College and Engineering at Cal State Long Beach”

Black Scholar Babatunde A. Ogunnaike Is New Dean of Engineering at the University of Delaware

Babatunde A. OgunnaikeBabatunde A. Ogunnaike is the new dean of the College of Engineering at the University of Delaware. The college has 130 faculty members in six academic departments and enrolls more than 3,000 undergraduate and graduate students.  Dr. Ogunnaike joined the faculty at the university in 2002. Prior to joining the university faculty, he had a 13-year career at DuPont Inc. He has been serving as the William L. Friend Chaired Professor of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at the university and has been interim dean for the past two years.

Professor Ogunnaike is a graduate of the University of Lagos in Nigeria. He holds a master’s degree and a Ph.D. in chemical engineering from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

article via jbhe.com

Girl Scouts and Sigma Gamma Rho Help Girls Imagine Engineering Careers

Girl Scouts of the USA (GSUSA) has joined forces with Sigma Gamma Rho, one of the nation’s largest African American sororities, to help build awareness of career possibilities in science, technology, and engineering among girls and parents in the African American community.

Working with local Girl Scout councils around the country, Sigma Gamma Rho’s alumnae chapters have made GSUSA’s Imagine Engineering Initiative, funded by the National Science Foundation, a focus of the sorority’s annual National Youth Symposium.
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Meet the Youngest African-American Engineer in America

Brittney Exline is special, very special. She’s the Michael Jordan of intellectuals, and getting the attention that she deserves.  Brittney has been named, according to Ebony.com and other sources, to be the young black engineer in the entire United States.   At 19 years old, the University of Pennsylvania grad has achieved more than most will achieve in their lifetime.

In addition to being an extraordinary engineer, Brittney also speaks five languages.  She graduated with minors in five different fields, including Math, Psychology and Classical Studies.  She has worked on Wall Street and also participated in numerous beauty pageants.

Continue reading “Meet the Youngest African-American Engineer in America”

DIVAS Bring STEM Program, Social Justice To Brooklyn

Professor Andrea Taylor with members of the robotics group.

According to the National Center for Women & Information Technology, only 25 percent of professional computing occupations in the US were held by women in 2011. Additionally, only three percent were African-American women, four percent were Asian women, and one percent were Hispanic women.

A Brooklyn-based nonprofit organization, DIVAS for Social Justice, is hoping to change those numbers with its programming, which encourages students to use multimedia projects to discuss social justice and other issues facing their communities. DIVAS, which stands for Digital, Interactive, Visual Arts, and Sciences, launched five years ago as a way to get students in underserved neighborhoods more interested in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM).

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Harvard Professor Karine Gibbs Wins $875,000 Packard Fellowship

In 1988 the Packard Foundation established the Fellowships for Science and Engineering. The goal was to allow some of the nation’s most promising young scientists to pursue their work without the worry of financing their work.

Now each year 16 fellows are selected from 50 major research universities. Each fellow receives a total of $875,000 over the ensuing five years. To be eligible, faculty members must be in the first three years of their academic careers in the fields of physics, astronomy, chemistry, mathematics, biology, computer science, earth science, ocean science, or in any field of engineering. There are no restrictions on how the fellows use their funds to compliment their research. Since 1988, more than 400 faculty members have become Packard Fellows, receiving more than $230 million in grants.

Karine A. Gibbs, an assistant professor of molecular and cellular biology at Harvard University, is one of the 16 Packard Fellows this year. Her research focuses on identifying the mechanisms underlying self-recognition in the bacterium Proteus mirabilis.

A native of Jamaica, Dr. Gibbs was raised in Baltimore. She is a graduate of Harvard University and holds a Ph.D. in microbiology and immunology from Stanford University.

article via jbhe.com

Aviation Pioneer J. Herman Banning Makes Historic Cross-Country Flight On This Day In 1932

 

James Herman Banning

The story of J. Herman Banning, an aviator who made a series of historic firsts, is an inspiring tale worthy of being retold for generations on end.  Born James Herman Banning in Oklahoma in 1899, he would later move his family to the town of Ames, Iowa in 1919. Enrolling into Iowa State, Banning briefly studied electrical engineering but later ended his collegiate career after being called to the skies. Continue reading “Aviation Pioneer J. Herman Banning Makes Historic Cross-Country Flight On This Day In 1932”

Will.i.am Developing TV Talent Show For Geniuses (“An American Idol For Young Wizards”)

 

Questioning whether the reality TV singing contests have run their course, rapper, musician, songwriter, singer, entrepreneur, actor, DJ and producer Will.i.am is reportedly working on a new technology-themed talent show that “aims to be an American Idol for young wizards.”

Will wants to create a TV platform that will find young geniuses to develop new products and encourage more children to develop “STEM” (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) skills, suggesting that a TV show that sets out to highlight technology stars would have “a more lasting impact, potentially creating a new product and creating jobs.” Continue reading “Will.i.am Developing TV Talent Show For Geniuses (“An American Idol For Young Wizards”)”

Cleveland Student David Boone Worked Hard To Go From Homeless To Harvard

 david.jpgDavid Boone used to sleep on this bench in Artha Woods Park when he had nowhere else to go. Next fall, the senior at Cleveland’s MC2STEM High School is headed to Harvard.

CLEVELAND, Ohio — David Boone had a system.  There wasn’t much the then-15-year-old could do about the hookers or drug deals around him when he slept in Artha Woods Park. And the spectator’s bench at the park’s baseball diamond wasn’t much of a bed.

But the aspiring engineer, now 18 and headed to Harvard University in the fall, had no regular home. Though friends, relatives and school employees often put him up, there were nights when David had no place to go, other than the park off Martin Luther King Jr. Drive.

So he says he made the best of those nights on the wooden bench.

His book bag became his pillow, stuffed with textbooks first — for height, he says — and papers on top for padding.

In the morning, David would duck into his friend Eric’s house after Eric’s parents left early for work so he could shower and dress before heading to class at Cleveland’s specialized MC2STEM High School. David expects to graduate from there next month as salutatorian of the new school’s first graduating class.

“I’d do my homework in a rapid station, usually Tower City since they have heat, and I’d stay wherever I could find,” he said.

If you meet David Boone today, his gentle, confident demeanor and easygoing laugh betray no cockiness over racking up a college acceptance record that others brag about for him. He was accepted at 22 of the 23 schools he applied to — including Harvard, Princeton, Yale, Brown and Penn.

He also gives no hint of the often harsh and nomadic life he has led. The medical problems he faced as a boy, a splintered family, being homeless — it all could have left him bitter and angry.

But David says that giving up would have left him stuck in a dead-end life, so it was never an option.

“I didn’t know what the results of not giving up were going to be, but it was better than nothing and having no advantages,” he said. “I wanted to be in a position to have options to do what I want to do.”

David was born to a young mother, who divorced his father when David was a little boy. Continue reading “Cleveland Student David Boone Worked Hard To Go From Homeless To Harvard”