HUNTSVILLE, AL – Middle school and high school students can learn new technological skills this summer to design and build robots at Drake State Community and Technical College.

Some schools may not offer robotics as an extracurricular activity, but a summer camp at Drake State can give students the opportunity to develop critical thinking skills that could lead to careers in aerospace engineering, mobile app and software development and cybersecurity. Learn more about these free bootcamps below.

Meta Middle School Robotics Summer Camp
Thanks to Drake State’s 2022 Meta Community Action Grant, rising 6th, 7th, and 8th grade students will spend one week building and programming solar robots.
When: July 11 – July 14
Time: 8am – Noon
Where: Drake State (3421 Meridan St.)
Application deadline: extended to July 7

Apply to the Meta Middle School Robotics Summer Camp here:

MUREP Robotics Bootcamp for high school students
High school students can sign up for the Robotics Bootcamp through NASA’s Minority University Research and Education Project (MUREP). The bootcamp will expose students to the fundamentals of robotics and allow them to participate in a design challenge to build a basic radio-control robot chassis. There are few spots available.
When: July 9
Time: 8:30 am – 4:30 pm
Where: Drake State (3421 Meridan St.)
Apply for the MUREP Robotics Bootcamp here:

About Drake State Community & Technical College
Drake State Community & Technical College offers flexible, affordable university-transfer and technical degrees, certificates, adult and continuing education, and customized skills training to fulfill the diverse workforce needs of employers. Visit for more information.


TALLADEGA, AL – In partnership with the City of Talladega, the Omega Academy of Science and Fine Arts has acquired the Talladega Golf Course and the Eastside Head Start building. These acquisitions will be used to provide education and sports initiatives to underserved communities.

The Omega Academy of Science and Fine Arts is a public-private partnership led by Dr. Mark E. Stevens, Vanessa Williams-Nash, Lamar D. Williams, and Dr. Shaquille O’Neal. Its mission is to provide solutions that enrich education and child development options to diverse communities by leveraging the organizers’ relationships with corporate partners using Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) initiatives.

Motivated and inspired by Dr. David Marion, Grand Basileus, Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Dr. Stevens undertook the challenge to find a new and innovative pathway to educational equity and inclusion.

The Omega Academy of Science and Fine Arts will provide services to individuals and families whose quality of life has been negatively impacted by poverty, unemployment, homelessness,crime, and inadequate public education services. The Academy’s resources will provide an alternative education platform and child development options for the community.

Plans include utilizing portions of the old golf course to create a golf school or six-hole loop course and driving range for the the city on the current 38-arce property. The program will enable youth to build the strength of character that empowers them through a lifetime of new challenges by seamlessly integrating the game of golf with a curriculum focused on diverse life skills.

Talladega City manager Seddrick Hill Sr. speaks during the ribbon cutting ceremony for Omega Golf Academy on June 17, 2022. Photo courtesy of The Daily Home.

Dr. Marion stated, ”Our historic organization is proud to partner with the Omega Academy of Science and Fine Arts in an effort to continue our legacy of building and developing tomorrow’s leaders. This partnership is an innovative solution to addressing the great challenges that many of our communities and cities are facing today.”

Talladega City Manager Seddrick Hill Sr., a Talladega College alumnus, noted that the city is undergoing a transformation that includes knocking down dilapidated, abandoned buildings; combating crime more aggressively; beautifying public spaces; and creating resolutions and ordinances that will help make the city a better place to live, work, and do business. He believes the academies will have a ”tremendous impact.”

Hill stated, ”The Omega Academy of Science and Fine Arts and the Omega Golf Academy will increase hope, opportunity and pride in Talladega.”

The Omega Academy of Science and Fine Arts plans to hire many of the same staff and previous student that attended the Eastside Academy in the past years.

During a recorded messages shared at the ribbon-cutting ceremony on June 17, 2022, Dr. Shaquille O’Neal praised Mr. Hill for helping to transform Talladega.

”When I do something, I do it big cause I’m still a kid at heart,” says O’Neal.

For more information, email Dr. Mark E. Stevens, Vanessa Williams-Nash or Lamar D. Williams at


F. George Shipman Science Center at Livingstone College.

SALISBURY, NC – Livingstone College is set to cut the ribbon of its state-of-the-art F. George Shipman Science Annex, named after its sixth president.

The event is schedule to take place on Friday, Feb. 11 at 11 a.m. in front of the new science center on campus, followed by a reception and tour inside the building.

The grand opening and ribbon cutting of the new science annex punctuates the college’s growing STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) program and focus on encouraging more African American students to major in STEM areas of study.

The new 16,000-square-foot science annex will featured dedicated laboratory/research spaces for microbiology, human anatomy/physiology, biochemistry and general chemistry, with smaller laboratory spaces for specialized research and a tissue culture lab.

One of the significant highlights of the facility is its planetarium/immersion theater with SciDome IQ 2400 technology, where students have a virtual-reality experience in human anatomy, physics, astronomy and earth science.

In addition to the planetarium, the annex includes a SCALE-UP classroom that facilitates active and collaborative learning, and a hydroponic greenhouse.

The new annex will allow Livingstone College to proper environment to implement a $2.24 million STEM grant it received in the fall from the National Science Foundation. The grant was the largest, single grant received in the history of the college and will fund a program called “Livingwell@Livingstone” to enhance persistence, retention and graduation rates in underrepresented minority students.

“We are thrilled to finally be act to cut the ribbon and showcase our new state-of-the-art science annex to the public,” said Dr. Jimmy R. Jenkins, Sr., Livingstone College President. “This annex coupled with the STEM grant will allow us to leverage partnerships with community science entrepreneurs and enhance the STEM student experience.”

“A key driver of STEM student success is STEM identity,” said McNair. “The F. George Shipman Annex provides a dedicated space designed to enhance scientific research and conceptual understanding. Our students will see the endless possibilities that exist in STEM, and how they might contribute to future science enterprise.”

The in-person grand opening ribbon-cutting is open to the public, and those attending must follow the college’s COVID-19 protocols, which includes showing proof of vaccination or presenting a negative COVID-19 PCR test within 72 hours of the event. Masks must be worn indoors for the duration of the program, but may be removed briefly for eating and drinking.

About Livingstone College
Livingstone College is a private historically black institution that is secured by a strong commitment to quality instruction. Though a Christian-based environment suitable for learning, it provides excellent liberal arts and religious education programs for students from all ethnic backgrounds designed to develop their potential for leadership and service to a global community. For more information, visit


BOWIE, MD – A new endowed cybersecurity chair position will be established at Bowie State University to accelerate the institution’s efforts to support students and graduates equipped generate new innovation in the profession, thanks to $500,000 in matching funds from the Maryland Department of Commerce.

Through the Maryland E-Nnovation Initiative Fund, a state program for STEM research at colleges and universities, Bowie State University will establish an endowed chair of cybersecurity, who will serve as the director of the Center for Cybersecurity and Emerging Technologies in the Department of Computer Science.

“Bowie State University is grateful for the Maryland E-Nnovation award that will help enable us to launch the first endowed chair position in the history of this institution,” said Guy-Alain Amoussou, Associate Provost. “Cybersecurity and Entrepreneurship represent two areas of strength at Bowie State University, and the creation of this endowed chair position will contribute to build a pipeline of cyber entrepreneurs who will contribute to the economic development of the region.”

The initiative will create a Bowie State ecosystem of cyber innovators, infuse entrepreneurship and technology in STEM curriculum, and enhance Bowie State’s pipeline of students from traditionally underrepresented communities to become cybersecurity and entrepreneurship leaders.

“The past year has shown us time and time again why innovative thinking and creative new ideas are essential to Maryland’s economic prosperity. We can never be sure what obstacles life will throw in our path,” said Kelly M. Schulz, Maryland Commerce Secretary. “By supporting these professorships, Commerce is helping make sure that some of the sharpest minds in Maryland continue their important work.”

The Maryland E-Nnovation Initiative was created by the General Assembly during the 2014 legislative session and has provided more than $54.3 million in funding to leverage more than $60.6 million in private donations.

About Bowie State University
Bowie State University (BSU) is an important higher education access portal for qualified persons from diverse academic and socioeconomic backgrounds, seeking a high-quality and affordable public comprehensive university. The university places special emphasis on the science, technology, cybersecurity, teacher education, business, and nursing disciplines within the context of a liberal arts education. For more information about BSU, visit

About Maryland Commerce
The Maryland Department of Commerce stimulates private investment and creates jobs by attracting new businesses, encouraging the expansion and retention of existing companies, and providing financial assistance to Maryland companies. The Department promotes the State’s many economic advantages and markets local products and services at home and abroad to spur economic development and international investment, trade and tourism. Because they are major economic generators, the Department also supports the Arts, film production, sports and other special events. For more information, visit


Dr. Pamela Brady, Chemistry Department Chair/Assistant Professor at Talladega College.

TALLADEGA, AL – Talladega College Chemistry Department Chair/Assistant Professor Dr. Pamela Brady is listed among the 1,000 Inspiring Black Scientists in America. This prestigious list, which was complied by Cell Mentor, a publication of Cell Press, highlights the important contributions that Black scientists make to the world’s scientific company.

Dr. Brady, a native of Winston-Salem, North Carolina, earned her bachelor’s degree in chemistry/pre-med with minors in both mathematics and Spanish at Winston-Salem State University in 2008. She completed her doctoral degree in analytical chemistry at Louisiana State University in 2015. Her research was focused on development of methods to assign methylated NMR peaks for the determination of the quaternary structure of proteins.

Dr. Brady completed a NH funded IRACDA Postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. Her work at UAB involved investigating the structure function relationship of coronaviral proteins using multidimensional NMR spectroscopy. During her postdoc, she also gained valuable teaching experience and earned CIRTL certification in teaching and learning, mentorship, and leadership. She joined Talladega in the Fall of 2019. Since that time, she has written a proposal to the state of Alabama for the college to obtain an Industrial Hemp license for the year 2020. Currently, she is working to submit an implementation grant for the establishment of the UTEACH program at Talladega. This program will be the one of the first to be implemented in HBCUs nationwide and the first to be implemented in an HBCU in the state of Alabama.

About Talladega College
Talladega College, Alabama’s private historically black college, is consistently ranked among the best southeastern colleges and top HBCUs in the nation. It was founded in 1867 by two former slaves, William Savery and Thomas Tarrant, and is the home of the renowned Hale Woodruff Amistad Murals. For more information, visit

SAN ANTONIO, TX – The National Science Foundation (NSF) selected St. Philip’s College (SPC) as the recipient of a $1.5 million grant to support their efforts in meeting the mission of the Ciencia, Ingeniería, y Matemáticas Aliados – Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation (CIMA-LSAMP) Program. CIMA-lSAMP strives to transform science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) education through innovative recruitment, retention strategies and experiences that support group historically underrepresented in STEM disciplines including African-Americans, Alaskan Natives, American Indians, Hispanic Americans, Native Hawaiians and Native Pacific mentorship, faculty mentorship, tutoring, supplemental instruction and undergraduate research.

CIMA was formed in the fall of 2013 when St. Philip’s College was first awarded the LSAMP Bridges to Baccalaureate Program (B2B) grant. It is comprised of the five Alamo Colleges: San Antonio College, Palo Alto College, Northeast Lakeview College, Northwest Vista College, and St. Philip’s College.

Each year, SPC hosts the CIMA-LSAMP Research Symposium where research scholars across the five colleges congregate to present their research and findings. The years, the event was held virtually via Zoom and featured 56 student presenters. Research topics included: Creating Efficient and Affordable Face Masks to Combat COVID-19; A Search for Nitrogen-fixing Microorganisms in Tillandsia recurvata from South Texas; Assessing Learning and Executive Function in Marmosets (Callithrix Jacchus) for Human Application; and Plant Metabolite Extraction Protocol and Investigation of Forest Disturbance effects on Costa Rican Howler Monkeys. The virtual event welcomed over 160 spectators.

For more information on the CIMA-LSAMP program, click here.


About St. Philip’s College
St. Philip’s College, founded in 1898, is a comprehensive public community college whose mission is to empower our diverse student population through educational achievement and career readiness. As a Historically Black College and Hispanic Serving Institution, St. Philip’s College is a vital facet of the community, responding to the needs of a population rich in ethnic, cultural, and socio-economic diversity. St. Philip’s College creates an environment fostering excellence in academic and technical achievement while expanding its commitment to opportunity and access. For more information, visit

ELIZABETH CITY, NC – The Office of Sponsored Programs at Elizabeth City State University has announced that funding for competitive awards has exceeded $5 million. Director of Sponsored Programs, Annemarie Delgado, says that at the end of the 2019 fiscal year, ECSU received 32 awards totaling more than $5 million, a substantial increase over last year’s 4 million mark.

“The grants awarded to our faculty and staff this past academic year showcase the various interests and strengths of our institution,” said Ms. Delgado.

According to Ms. Delgado, grant funding included programs such as Upward Bound, public broadcasting, aviation science, STEM education, research on African American history and more.

“In addition, ECSU faculty garnered some very prestigious awards this year from sponsors such as the Institute of Museum and Library Services for a study on African-American Cultural Heritage, from the U.S. Department of Education for studies of coastal habitats, and an award from the National Science Foundation to further research in plant science,” said Ms. Delgado.

The ECSU Office of Sponsored Programs has been working with faculty and staff to expand competitive grant opportunities, and offer support through the process. Their efforts, in collaboration with faculty, has resulted in high-profile grant awards that bring new research opportunities to campus, offering faculty and students a broader range of opportunities and ECSU more exposure throughout the world of higher education.

Ms. Delgado said that when faculty members write for grants, they will include students as part of their proposals. This means that when a grant is awarded, not only do faculty members receive research funding, undergraduate and graduate students also receive support and opportunities to work on research projects.

Including students in research affords ECSU students the opportunity to gain valuable experience. That experience can be translated into qualifying graduate work, as well as career experience, said Ms. Delgado.

“We are excited by the many opportunities that theses awards bring to our campus in terms growing our research capabilities, providing more undergraduate and graduate research and training opportunities, and expanding our research and lab facilities,” said Ms. Delgado.


About Elizabeth City State University

Elizabeth City State University (ECSU), a constituent institution of the University of North Carolina, is the premier public institution serving northeastern North Carolina, providing affordable academic programs and services of exceptional caliber in a nurturing environment. The university attracts and retain a diverse and highly qualified faculty that educate and lead the students to become productive members of a global and increasingly independent society. ECSU continues to be a leading partner in enhancing educational and cultural opportunities and improving the economic strength in the region. For more information, visit

Middle school male students from Hamtpon City Schools will participate in a three-week program at Hampton University to immerse them in STEM

HAMPTON, VA – Middle school male students from Hampton City Schools will participate in a three-week program at Hampton University to immerse them in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) activities, starting June 17, and will run until July 5, 2019.

“The Verizon Innovative Learning program was such a success last year that we are excited to bring STEM learning to minority males again this year. Thank you to Verizon for continuing to provide support and the technology to help our youth succeed in the digital age,” said Hampton University President, Dr. William R. Harvey.

Launched in 2015, the Verizon Innovative Learning program works with Hampton University to help prepare minority male students in middle school for the tech careers of the future. Students participating in the program are invited to learn and take summer courses at HU that provide entrepreneurship training, hands-on learning experiences in next-gen technologies, like robotics, augmented reality, and 3D printing. Following the summer courses, students are invited back to the university, monthly, for continued STEM education courses and mentoring.

This program is free for minority male students from the Hampton roads area. The Verizon Innovative Learning program gives free technology, free access and innovate curricula to under-resourced students impacted by the digital divide to help them realize a brighter future.

“We are honored to continue this exciting program at Hampton University. It is wonderful to see how excited the young men have been in the past, when going through the program, and being introduced to the world of STEM with emerging technology,” said Ms. Marci Turner, assistant professor in the Hampton University Department of Architecture and VIL Program Director. “The Verizon Innovative Learning Program gives young men the knowledge and tools to build the future they want.”

There is still space available and interested students are encouraged to apply. Please contact the Program Director for further information at or


About Verizon Innovative Learning

Verizon Innovative Learning, the education initiative of the Verizon Foundation, brings technology and hands-on learning opportunities to middle and high school students in underserved schools and communities. We not only fund the programs, but we also create and administer them in partnership with leading nonprofits. We diligently measure the impact of our work and refine our programs to ensure we’re making a difference. We’ve reached more than 1 million students so far – and we’re just getting started. For more information about Verizon’s philanthropic work, visit; or for regular updates, visit Facebook ( and Twitter (

About Hampton University

Hampton University is a comprehensive institution of higher education, dedicated to the promotion of learning, building of character and preparation of promising students for positions of leadership and service. its curriculum emphasis is scientific and professional with a strong liberal arts under girding. In carrying out its mission, the University requires that everything that it does be of the highest quality. For more information, visit

BALTIMORE, MD – With a 580-acre headquarters campus in Gaithersburg, Maryland, and more than 3,000 employees in six locations across the U.S., the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) carries out a mission that helps make possible much of the world’s advancement in science and technology. Last fall, Morgan State University (MSU) began a major collaboration with the institute through a $30-million, five-year program led by The John Hopkins University. The Professional Research Experience Program (PREP) offers undergraduate and graduate students, postdoctoral fellows and faculty from Morgan, Hopkins and Binghamton University, State University of New York opportunities to work at NSIT. Morgan can receive up to $1 million per year from PREP in personnel funds for Morgan students and/or faculty to work to NIST laboratories. Michael Spencer, professor of electrical engineering (ECE).

Founded in 1901 as the National Bureau of Standards, an agency with the mandate to provide standard weights and measures for the nation, NIST took its current name in 1988 and now has a broader mission: “to promote U.S. innovation and industrial competitiveness by advancing measurement science, standards and technology in ways that enhance economic security and improve our quality of life.”

Dr. Michael Spencer, Ph.D., professor of electrical engineering (ECE)

“Morgan is geographically fortunate to be situated near several high-quality national laboratories. NIST is one of them, and they have outstanding world-class resources,” says Michael Spencer, Ph.D., professor in Morgan’s Clarence M. Mitchell Jr. School of Engineering and the administrator of Morgan’s PREP grant. “So this becomes an opportunity for students and faculty to develop joint relationships with laboratories of interest at NIST. It’s even more fortuitous that our current Vice President for Research and Development (Willie May, Ph.D.) is a former director of NIST and has a lot of ties there, so he can suggest relationships that can be developed.”

To strengthen the connection between MSU and NIST and to facilitate the University’s participation in the research, Morgan has allocated funds to provide bus transportation to NIST headquarters from the Hopkins campus.

“The program is open to any students or faculty who meet the requirements of the NIST laboratories,” Dr. Spencer says. “NIST’s research is predominately in physical science, computational science and engineering, but they also do work in other areas.

“International, as well as domestic students and faculty, are eligible for PREP,” he adds. “This is one of the few places where an international student can have an internship without having to pass security clearances.”

Dr. Spencer is hopeful that Morgan’s partnership with NIST will flourish to its fullest, noting that one of NIST’s five Nobel laureates will give a lecture at Morgan on April 30.

“If strong collaborations can be established between the laboratories and Morgan through PREP,” he says, “a large number of our students may benefit.

About Morgan State University

Morgan State University serves the community, region, state, nation, and world as an intellectual and creative resource by supporting, empowering and preparing high-quality, diverse graduates to lead the world. The University offers innovative, inclusive, and distinctive educational experiences to a broad cross section of the population in a comprehensive range of disciplines at the baccalaureate, master’s, doctoral, and professional degree levels. Through collaborative pursuits, scholarly research, creative endeavors, and dedicated public service, the University gives significant priority to addressing societal problems, particularly those prevalent in urban communities. For more information, visit

About NIST

The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) was founded in 1901 and is now part of the U.S. Department of Commerce. NIST is one of the nation’s oldest physical science laboratories. Congress established the agency to remove a major challenge to U.S. industrial competitiveness at the time—a second-rate measurement infrastructure that lagged behind the capabilities of the United Kingdom, Germany, and other economic rivals. For more information, visit


N.C. A&T has been a Center for Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense for eight years contributes to the diversity of the NSA workforce. Photo Courtesy of N.C. A&T.

With the focus that North Carolina A&T State University has in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) as a HBCU, the institution has partnered with the National Security Agency (NSA) for over 20 years.

“N.C. A&T contributes to the diversity of our workforce and provides degree programs that are comprehensive, multidisciplinary and relevant to our mission,” said George C. Barnes, Deputy Director of NSA.

To celebrate its partnership, NSA has named N.C. A&T a semester long, Featured School – only the second school to receive this honor. The Featured School Series highlights colleges and university that help develop the talent and tools needed to meet national security challenges. The collaboration between NSA and N.C. A&T is being highlighted on, and on social media.

“We are so excited to be chosen as a Featured School. Partnerships such as this demonstrate our commitment to improving lives through innovations in research and discovery,” said Beryl McEwen, N.C. A&T’s Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs. “N.C. A&T’s longstanding commitment to computer science and to cybersecurity has made significant career opportunities available for so many exceptional students and helped to advance the frontiers of this important discipline.

N.C. A&T has been a National Center of Excellence (CAE) for eight year, promoting higher education and research in the critical area of cyber defense (cybersecurity). The school is also one of 16 colleges and universities across the country in NSA’s hiring and recruitment Campus Ambassador Program (CAP), which serves to build and strengthen relationships with select universities. Further, N.C. A&T hosted two GenCyber Camps in 2019 sponsored by NSA and the National Science Foundation, providing free summer cybersecurity experiences for students and teachers at the K-12 level.

Currently, NSA hires more N.C. A&T grads than any other agency in the Intelligence Community, nearly 70 N.C. A&T alumni work at the Agency.

“Academic partnerships are so vital to national security that NSA invests more than $100 million annually in support of academic partner programs, including educational grants, research and recruitment efforts,” Barnes said.

NSA aims to introduce a new featured school every few months, highlighting schools designated as Centers of Academic Excellence (CAE) that have depth and breadth for engagement with NSA. The series will also have presence on and will be featured on social media.

Click here for more about N.C. A&T and NSA’s partnership.

Click here for more information about NSA partnership opportunities at both the college and university level.


About North Carolina A&T State University

North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University advances knowledge through scholarly exchange and transforms society with exceptional teaching, learning, discovery and community engagement. An 1890 land-grant doctoral research institution with a distinction in STEM and commitment to excellence in all disciplines, North Carolina A&T creates innovative solutions that address the challenges and economic needs of North Carolina, the nation and the world.  For more information, visit