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June/July 2010

Diversity/Careers June/July 2010 Issue




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African Americans in IT
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Grace Hopper in Sept
Great Minds in STEM



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University of Puerto Rico takes MoonBuggy race honors

The winning team from U Puerto Rico-Humacao charges across the finish line.Huntsville, AL – Racers from the University of Puerto Rico in Humacao took first place in the college division of NASA’s Great Moonbuggy Race this year. Humacao is the only school in the world to have entered a moonbuggy in every race since the event began in 1994, and this is their first win. Congratulations to a tough and determined team!

The team from the International Space Education Institute, Leipzig, Germany, won the high school division of this year’s Moonbuggy. Known among moonbuggy racers as “Team Germany,” it has been a prominent contender since its 2007 debut. This year’s winning team included two Russian students, reflecting the school’s expanded international scope.

NASA’s Great Moonbuggy Race is hosted each year by the U.S. Space & Rocket Center, Huntsville, AL. Major corporate sponsorship is provided by Lockheed Martin, Boeing, Northrop Grumman and Jacobs Engineering ESTS Group, all represented in Huntsville.


BDPA announces 2010 best companies and Epsilon award winners

Largo, MD and Parsippany, NJ – Black Data Processing Associates (BDPA) and WorkplaceDiversity.com have named the 2010 Best Companies for Blacks in Technology award winners. They are Allstate Insurance, American Airlines, Compuware, Eli Lilly, Health Care Service Corp, IBM, Intel, Merck, Prudential Financial, State Farm Insurance, the U.S. Navy, Wal-Mart Stores, WellPoint and Wells Fargo.

“These companies deserve special recognition for promoting a significant number of African Americans into their IT management ranks, and for their outstanding community outreach and minority vendor programs,” says Milt Haynes, a past president of National BDPA.

The top companies for blacks in technology are eligible for Epsilon awards for doing the best job of promoting a workplace environment that supports the advancement of blacks in IT. This year four new categories have been added: promotions and terminations; leadership development and advancement programs; supplier diversity programs; and community outreach programs. One company will be named an Epsilon winner in each category.

BDPA also presents individual Epsilon Awards to tech pros nominated by BDPA chapters and BDPA sponsor organizations. The 2010 individual awards for career achievement went to Wheeler Coleman, chief technology officer, Health Care Service Corp, and Captain Joycelin Robinson, Supply Corps commanding officer, U.S. Navy.

The winner for professional achievement is William Marcus King, director, State Farm Insurance. Two Wells Fargo techies, Sharon Murphy, director of team enablement technology and Cheryl Terry, systems architect, were named for outstanding technical contributions. Awards for community service went to Donald Brown, systems manager, Prudential Financial; and Sheila Marionneaux, senior program manager, Health Care Service Corp.

All the Epsilon awards will be formally presented at the 2010 National BDPA Technology Conference, July 28-31 in Philadelphia, PA. For more information see www.bdpa.org.


Applications due October 15 for NCWIT
“aspirations in computing” awards


Boulder, CO – The National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT) is a coalition of more than 200 corporations, academic institutions, government agencies and nonprofits working to increase women’s participation in IT. Each year NCWIT’s “aspirations in computing” awards honor high school women for their computing-related achievements and interests.

Awardees are selected for computing and IT aptitude, leadership ability, academic history and plans for post-secondary education. Sponsors include Bank of America, the Motorola Foundation, Microsoft and Google.

Students can apply for the awards between September 6 and October 15, 2010. The 2011 national awards ceremony will take place next March 1 at Bank of America HQ in Charlotte, NC. More information, applications and a listing of competitions are available at www.ncwit.org.

In addition to the national awards program, a growing series of affiliate awards with regional and local partners is planned. For information on hosting an affiliate event contact Ruthe Farmer, ruthe.farmer@colorado.edu.


Rockwell Collins gets “introduce a girl to engineering” award

Eighth graders from local Cedar Rapids schools work in Rockwell Collins’ advanced technology center synthetic vision lab.Denver, CO – Each year WEPAN, working with the National Engineers Week Foundation, presents the “Introduce a Girl to Engineering” award honoring an outstanding “Introduce a Girl to Engineering Day” event. Rockwell Collins (Cedar Rapids, IA) was among the first companies to take up the event, and it won the award for this year’s edition.

The company hosted eighty middle-school girls at its corporate HQ for its eighth annual Introduce a Girl to Engineering event. Each girl was paired with a female engineering mentor for the day. The pairs visited a variety of engineering labs, including the synthetic vision lab and the flight deck lab, as well as testing facilities.

At lunch, the girls and their mentors listened to speakers including Nan Mattai, Rockwell Collins’ SVP of engineering and technology. Mattai is slated to be global chair for the 2011 Global Marathon event for, by and about women in engineering. For more information visit www.eweek.org or www.wepan.org.


Naval engineering education consortium announced

Washington, DC – The U.S. Navy’s Naval Sea Systems Command (NAVSEA) has put together a consortium of schools to act as a Naval Engineering Education Center (NEEC). NEEC will develop naval systems engineers for the Navy’s civilian engineering and science workforce.

Led by the University of Michigan, the consortium will start with fifteen colleges and universities, the American Society of Naval Engineers (ASNE) and the Society of Naval Architects and Marine Engineers (SNAME).

The consortium includes schools with active programs to recruit and support women and minorities in technology: Virginia Polytechnic Institute, MIT, Penn State University, Georgia Institute of Technology, Webb Institute, Florida State University, Florida Atlantic University, Old Dominion University, Tennessee State University, Stevens Institute of Technology, University of New Orleans, University of Iowa, University of Texas-San Antonio and University of Washington.

“The NEEC will provide NAVSEA with a pipeline of engineers in critical engineering career fields to address the challenges we face in building and sustaining the twenty-first century Navy,” says Brian Persons, NAVSEA executive director. “This is the newest tool in NAVSEA’s talent management strategy to develop, attract and retain a broader, more capable workforce.”

A key part of the NEEC is using project-based education to give students naval engineering experience. The NEEC universities will also partner with ASNE and SNAME to develop a program for K-12 outreach, to increase a student pipeline across the nation interested in pursuing education in the STEM fields.


Pennsylvania students champs at rocketry challenge

A competitor from the Westlawn Rocket Team prepares his team’s cargo for launch.The Plains, VA – A team from Penn Manor High School (Millersville, PA) took first place at the eighth annual Team America Rocketry Challenge (TARC). Sponsored by the Aerospace Industries Association and the National Association of Rocketry, the competition is designed to spark students’ interest in aerospace careers and STEM college degree programs.

Scott C. Donnelly, AIA chair and president and CEO of Textron, notes that TARC has proved a great success in getting young people to consider careers in aerospace and advance their studies in STEM fields.

About a quarter of the participants in the 2010 TARC national finals were women. The Aerospace Industries Association has worked with the Girl Scouts to get more teams involved.

The winning Penn Manor team gets a trip to the Farnborough International Air Show (Farnborough, Hampshire, UK) in July, sponsored by Raytheon, where it will compete against the UK and French national champions in the International Youth Rocketry Challenge. In addition, Lockheed Martin provides scholarships to members of the top three teams.

Other sponsors include the Defense Department, the American Association of Physics Teachers and AIA member companies. Complete competition results and more information are available at www.rocketcontest.org.



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