Atlanta University Center Consortium

GE Brings ‘Good Things’ to the Lives of DDEP Students

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Keith Edmonds pictured next to GE patriarch Thomas Edison.

With 10 business divisions that range from aviation to transportation, General Electric Co. continues to power the world with its innovation. Beginning with Thomas Edison’s incandescent lamp in 1879, today GE has morphed into a global digital industrial company, recording more than $119 billion in 2016 sales revenue, according to MarketWatch.

The Boston-based conglomerate has roots in more the 170 countries and employs 295,000 people around the world. With accolades like “World’s Most Admired Companies,” by Fortune; “Most Innovative Companies,” by Fast Company; “World’s Most Respected Companies,” by Barron’s; “World’s 100 Most In Demand Employers,” by LinkedIn; and “Top Companies for Leaders,” by Aon Hewitt, students at the Atlanta University Center clamor to get into the corporate ranks of GE.

A long supporter of the Atlanta University Center Consortium Dual Degree Engineering Program, GE has hired 100 program students and provided more than $25,000 in scholarships.

“GE is a global company dedicated to ensuring we have a diverse workforce that reflects what is represented in the world today,” said Keith Edmonds, Global Fulfillment Leader in the Gas Turbine Supply Chain for GE. “[At GE], you get to be part of a dynamic team that challenges you and is part of solving some of the world’s most complex issues.”

From reducing the cycle time it takes to manufacture a component to eliminating a quality defect in the supply chain, interns work on projects that impact GE and its customers, according to Edmonds.

“Interns work on real projects that have an impact on our business and will solve a challenging problem for our customers,” said Edmonds, a mechanical engineer graduate from the University of Louisville who has worked for GE for the past 18 years. “The internship gives the student the experience they need to interview for full-time opportunities.”

Both a first-rate organization for producing products to live by and creating leadership programs for future engineers and other professionals, GE is “imagination at work.” It remains a loyal supporter of AUCC/DDEP.

“GE is a world-class company that is part of solving the world’s most complex issues,” said Edmonds, “and we want the best and the brightest to be part of our team.”

 

 

 

 

Reasons to Choose IUPUI

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IUPUI is two world-renowned universities on one dynamic campus in Indianapolis.

Since becoming an Atlanta University Center Consortium partner institution in 2012, 12 Atlanta University Center Dual Degree Engineering Program students have attended Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis.

Two world-renowned universities on one dynamic campus, IUPUI is an urban research university in the center of the nation’s 12th largest city and was created in 1969 as a partnership between Indiana and Purdue universities. The campus is within walking distance from internationally recognized museums, galleries, hospitals, state government, professional sports venues, live music and restaurants. 

Purdue University Engineering Degrees

  • Students who earn their degree in engineering on the IUPUI campus leave with a degree from Purdue University.
  • Engineering degrees offered are biomedical engineering, computer engineering, electrical engineering, energy engineering, mechanical engineering, motorsports engineering and interdisciplinary engineering.

    AUCC/DDEP to IUPUI alumni pictured left to right: Patrick Brobbey, Morehouse, 2013/IUPUI, 2016; Melody Thomas, CAU, 2013/IUPUI, 2016; and Brian McGuire, CAU, 2013/IUPUI, 2016.

Scholarships Available
Purdue School of Engineering and Technology Scholarship Opportunities:

AUC Leadership Scholarship

  • Students with a CGPA of 3.0 from Clark Atlanta, Morehouse, Spelman – $20,000 annual scholarship (estimated)
  • Estimated annual tuition costs after scholarship – $11,000 per year

AUC Transfer Scholarship

  • Students with a CGPA 2.8 – 2.99 receive a $5,000 annual scholarship.

IUPUI Campus Scholarship Opportunities:

  • Diversity Scholars Research Program
  • Norman Brown Diversity and Leadership Program
  • Commitment to Engineering Excellence

Information on the IUPUI campus scholarships can be found at: www.iupui.edu/~scentral/

 

Member institution dual-degree graduates 2016. Thomas pictured fourth from left and Brobbey far right.

Diversity & Resources

Multicultural Success Center
IUPUI has many resources available to help students succeed. The Math Assistance Center, the Writing Center, the Bepko Learning Center, and the Multicultural Success Center are just a few.

The Multicultural Success Center has a focus on cultural programming, awareness and understanding as well as academic success and mentoring, student organization development and support and leadership development.

National Society of Black Engineers
The Purdue School of Engineering and Technology has an active NSBE chapter. Funding from the School of Engineering and Technology Student Council has provided funding for AUC students to attend NSBE National Conferences.

Individual Attention
Though nearly a 30,000-student population, students are not just a number at IUPUI. Smaller class sizes than expected exist for a university of its size and individual attention are routinely part of the IUPUI experience.

Diversity Awards

IUPUI is a 5X HEED Award Winner!
The Insight Into Diversity Higher Education Excellence in Diversity Award recognizes colleges and universities that demonstrate an outstanding commitment to diversity and inclusion. IUPUI was recognized with this award in 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016.

Among Top 30 Best U.S. Non-HBCU Schools for Minorities
IUPUI received the honor of being named among the 30 best non-Historically Black Colleges and Universities for minorities in the United States by Diverse: Issues in Higher Education.

Internships and Placement
The Purdue School of Engineering and Technology, IUPUI, has a dedicated staff to help students find paid internship positions in industry and laboratories, as well as full time employment at graduation. AUC students have completed internships or have been placed in full time positions in a variety of different companies including Allison Transmission, Cummins, General Motors, Helmer Scientific, Honda, IBM, Jacobs Engineering, Lockheed Martin, and Medtronic.

Undergraduate Research
Many of the scholarships listed above include opportunities for undergraduate research. However, there are other opportunities for research as well. These include the Multidisciplinary Undergraduate Research program and the Undergraduate Research Opportunity Program. Both of these opportunities typically provide funding for students.

Application Fee Waived – So Apply and Make a Visit!
The application for admission fee is waived for AUC students applying to an engineering program on the IUPUI Campus. Admitted AUC students are invited to visit IUPUI. The Purdue School of Engineering and Technology, IUPUI, will provide funding for costs of the visit.

Questions?
Contact Marilyn Mangin, Director of Student Services and Recruitment, Purdue School of Engineering and Technology, IUPUI. Email: mmangin@iupui.edu or call 317-278-2407.

by Patrick Brobbey, a Morehouse College/IUPUI DDEP graduate and controller integration test engineer at General Motors

The Ride That Guides Dunbar’s Success

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As an anchor attraction, the roller coaster is the high point ride for any child who visits an amusement park. But, for Dionna Dunbar, the roller coaster was more than a favorite ride. “As a child, I was amazed by [its] mechanical ingenuity,” said Dunbar. At a middle school career day, her interest piqued even more when she met a parent who was a mechanical engineer. After that, Dunbar’s curiosity blossomed into full-grown college-seeking interest.

While her parents wanted her to attend Georgia Tech, she was interested in attending a historically black institution. Upon learning about the Dual Degree Engineering Program at Clark Atlanta University, Dunbar said she could not have chosen a better path to success.

“[When] I realized I could attend an HBCU and a major engineering institute, I immediately applied for CAU with all intentions on attending Georgia Tech,” said Dunbar who is senior manager for Venturing and Emerging Brands at The Coca-Cola Co. “I was blessed to have both experiences and ingest from amazing experiences, along the way.

As senior manager for VEB Supply Chain and Procurement at Coca-Cola, Dunbar coordinates the brands’ logistics, plans the supply strategy and financial outputs, sources materials and services, manages manufacturing, controls delivery/shipping, and monitors the quality system.

“When I graduated from AUCC/DDEP, I worked for eight years in the aerospace industry with General Electric, Aviation Business,” said Dunbar, who spent all her college summers working internships with organizations like the Naval Research Laboratory in Washington, D.C., Milliken in Spartanburg, South Carolina, the Georgia Tech Biomedical Engineering Laboratory, and General Electric’s Energy Division in Atlanta.

“There I used my technical background and built a supply chain expertise, and I quickly realized the people making money and decisions were the same people ‘managing’ the money.”

Based on that summation by Dunbar, she enrolled in the Johns Hopkins Carey Business School and received her master’s in business finance, further leveling the professional playing field.

“DDEP was the best thing that happened to me and provided a safe zone while transitioning between CAU and GT,” said Dunbar who holds a Six Sigma Black Belt certification. “DDEP taught me discipline and work ethic, and I’ve built lifetime relationships with other DDEP grads, corporations and administrators.”

For Jackson, No Job is Too Much for This Scholar-Athlete

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Chris and mother Nolita Jackson

Christopher Jackson grinds more than 50 hours a week on three jobs – Moe’s Southwest Grill at Clark Atlanta University, Allied Universal Security Services and Uber Eats. While 50 hours a week might be standard for many workers, it is not normal for a full-time mechanical engineering scholar-athlete who holds a 3.85 GPA at CAU.

Jackson is one of 130 scholar-athletes at CAU to earn a 3.0 GPA or higher during the spring and fall semesters. A Dual Degree Engineering Program student, Jackson came to CAU after he was denied admission to Georgia Tech, although he graduated at the top of his class. However, things would work to his advantage.

“I was accepted to the University of Georgia, but I did not want to go there – that’s my rival school of course, and then my major was not accredited at UGA at the time,” said the Warner Robins, Georgia, native, who grew up in Conyers, Georgia. “Once being recruited to CAU for football and hearing of the 3-2 program for engineering and being given a second chance to head to Georgia Tech, I took advantage of the opportunity and have gone with it since.”

Committed, determined, and unwavering, Jackson credits DDEP with guiding him with career opportunities, helping him receive scholarships, and building his credit.

“Chiefly, I feel this amazing program transforms your mindset from that of a child into one of a successful adult,” said Jackson who has landed a summer 2017 internship with Rockwell Automation in Milwaukee.

At the 2016 DDEP Awards Banquet, Chris received the Engineering Success Awards for students who have gone above and beyond in their engineering discipline.

With plans to transfer to Georgia Tech in the fall, Jackson will pursue autonomous intelligence and robotics engineering. After Georgia Tech, Jackson wants to work for RedZone Robotics, Kawasaki Robotics, or contract to do research for the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency.

Strictly speaking, the 210-plus pound linebacker’s scholar-athlete accomplishments and successes come from a motivated spirit.

“It is not the fact that you are a scholar-athlete that sets you apart from the majority of the population, but the fact that amid multiple adversities in your personal life, school life, work life, and even sports life, you are motivated to advance through boundaries, limits, and parameters that make others quit the same path you travel,” said Jackson.

“It is certainly not an easy task or feat; however, for those who are not afraid of grinding to get to where they desire to be, it becomes less of a burden to be a scholar-athlete and transforms more into a mentality of ‘If this can’t stop my success, then what can.’”

Dual Degree Alumnus Offers Career Options

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Photo from 2014 Georgia State Law Alumni Magazine

Braxton K. Davis
Patent Attorney, Turocy & Watson, LLP

Although the Dual Degree Engineering Program provided me with the foundation to be a solid engineer, I ultimately decided to become a patent attorney, where I could balance my engineering degree with my interest in the law. An underrepresented fact about this industry is that you can actually practice patent prosecution by becoming a patent agent without going to law school. You just need a science or engineering degree and to successfully pass the patent bar. Neither of which require going to law school.

After graduating from Morehouse and the Georgia Institute of Technology, I worked as an engineer prior to taking the patent bar to become a patent agent and facilitate my goal of eventually becoming a patent attorney. Since then, my mission has been to educate others on how they can become a patent agent or patent attorney and provide them with the skill set to do so.

So, I founded the Patent Institute of Training to directly address the need for practical experience in this field. Because this area of law is so unique and the opportunities are boundless, my other mission is ensure that DDEP students know about this field so that they too can have alternative career options.

For instance, the average electrical engineering starting salary is $70,000, but the average electrical engineering patent agent starting salary is $90,000. The other benefit to practicing as a patent agent prior to going to law school is that you don’t have to invest three years of your life in a degree only to find out that the patent practice is really not what you thought it was.

Alternatively, those who practice as a patent agent and then make the informed decision to go to law school can nearly double their salary by investing the three years in law school.

Bridel F. Jackson III: An Honest, Ethical and Smart Engineer

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Birdel Jackson III pictured with Melvin Hill, the 2016 DDEP recipient of the Jackson-Davis Foundation award.

Birdel F. Jackson III’s lifelong commitment has been to make the engineering profession more diverse and inclusive. A crusader for helping minority students become civil engineers, Jackson, a civil engineer himself, passed away Oct. 20, 2016.

Since he established the Jackson-Davis Foundation in 2002 to award scholarships in honor of his grandparents Gladys Davis and Birdel F. Jackson who attended Spelman, Rust and Knoxville Colleges, 37 AUC Dual Degree Engineering program students have received $50,000 from his foundation. Awarded to civil engineering students interested in pursuing careers in consulting engineering, obtaining their professional engineering license, or becoming a leader in the field, Jackson’s philanthropic spirit has greatly benefitted DDEP.

Jackson began his professional career in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, with the American Bridge Division of U.S. Steel. His next job took him to Washington D.C. and the Bridge Division of the District of Columbia Highway Department. He moved to Atlanta where he was employed by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. After which he served as General Electric Project Engineer responsible for construction of a Caustic Soda Plant in Indiana and miscellaneous manufacturing facility construction. He later returned to Atlanta where he served as a regional manager, division director and vice president for a national black owned consulting engineering firm and later a major black-owned architecture and engineering firm. In 1988, he purchased the Atlanta office of the architecture firm and began his entrepreneurial effort, B&E Jackson Engineers, and the firm’s staff grew from three to 47 professionals.

“Birdel and I both worked and marketed projects together. Birdel is an ‘old-time engineer’ in the best sense of the phrase – honest, ethical and smart,” wrote Robert Bielek, district engineer at Texas Department of Transportation, on Jackson’s LinkedIn page. “ You can’t go wrong with Birdel on your team.”

He was a registered professional engineer in Georgia and 13 other states; a member of the Society of American Military Engineers, Consulting Engineers Council of Georgia – named 1997 Engineer of the Year, American Society of Civil Engineers, National Organization of Minority Architects, National Technical Association and National Society of Black Engineers. Birdel’s professional experience included Engineering Design and Surveying for several municipal governments, design and construction of highways, bridges, wastewater facilities, military buildings and housing projects. He has supervised and scheduled more than $1 billion in projects.

Initiated into the Omega Psi Phi Fraternity in November 1964, at the Xi Tau Chapter at Toledo University, he has remained an active and ardent Life Member and participated in the establishment of Delta Kappa Chapter at Georgia Tech; reactivating Tau Chapter at Atlanta University; charter member of Beta Xi in Evansville, Indiana and Chi Gamma Gamma in Marietta. His community service work involves mentoring programs with CHI GAMMA GAMMA Chapter of Omega Psi Phi; 100 Black Men of Atlanta; Aviation Career Enrichment (a program to encourage black youths in Aviation) and Engineering Rap Session Counselor at Douglass High School. He was selected as the 1997 Engineer of the Year and awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award by the American Council of Engineering Companies and Georgia Society of Professional Engineers. Mr. Jackson was selected by the University of Toledo, College of Engineering as the 2001 Civil Engineer of the year. He was elected to the Academy of Distinguished Engineering Graduates at Georgia Tech in 2002. Mr. Jackson was chosen as a 2004 Diversity Champion for the American Society of Civil Engineers in recognition of voluntary services to make the profession more inclusive. 

He was a civil engineering graduate of the University of Toledo with a master’s degree in civil engineering from Georgia Tech. Jackson served on the Industrial Advisory Board of the University of Toledo’s College of Engineering, and the Civil Engineering Advisory Board. He served as national alumni president of the University of Toledo Alumni Association and is an emeritus member of Georgia Tech’s School of Civil and Environmental Engineering’s external advisory board.

Jackson was a registered professional engineer in 14 states; a Fellow of the Society of American Military Engineers; member of the Consulting Engineers Council of Georgia, American Society of Civil Engineers, National Organization of Minority Architects, National Technical Association and National Society of Black Engineers.

The Atlanta University Center Consortium is forever grateful and honored for the path Mr. Jackson has paved in the engineering profession.

Honoring Our Best and Brightest

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Georgia Tech offered the most acceptances of third-year AUC students.

Call it an evening of stars. More than 200 students, parents, corporate sponsors, and program institutions were on hand at the 39th Annual AUC Consortium Dual Degree Engineering Program Networking Event and Awards Ceremony, Saturday, April 16, at the Georgia Railroad Freight Depot. Held to recognize outstanding dual-degree engineering students from Clark Atlanta UniversityMorehouse College and Spelman College.

The awards banquet offers a great opportunity to showcase all the involved participants – students, partnering and member institutions, as well as the corporations who sponsor and hire Atlanta University Center students. AUC schools are a major feeder for minority students who enter engineering schools. AUC students have the benefit of receiving two degrees – one from the home institution and one from the engineering institution – in approximately five years.

Students received the following awards:

AUCC DDEP Alumni of the Year

Marcus-Tor Strickland

  • Marcus-Tor Strickland, Morehouse College/Missouri S&T University

As a liaison between DDEP alumni and AUCC, Strickland has taken a lead role in revamping participation between the organizations. He is a person about town with roles as director of Development at Prevention Partners Inc., troop leader with Boy Scouts – Atlanta Area Council Troop 100, B.E.S.T. Academy, and business development engineer at Murata Electronics. He has intensely pursued his passions to support healthy lifestyles, develop young African-American men, and development a financially stable community.

Asia Kindley and Natasja Baldwin

Work Study Student Recognition

  • Michala Mercer, Senior, Spelman College
  • Asia Kindley, Sophomore, Spelman College
  • Natasja Baldwin, Freshman, DDEP, Spelman College

These students assist AUCC in moving projects forward with their tireless support. Without these students, much of the work of this office could not be possible.

ExxonMobil Achievement Award Recipients

  • Perry Francois-Edwards, Third-Year, Morehouse College
  • K’yal Bannister, Third-Year, Spelman College

Dinushka Herath

ExxonMobil Most Outstanding Third-Year Chemical Engineering Student

  • Dinushka Herath, Clark Atlanta University

ExxonMobil Most Outstanding Third-Year Mechanical Engineering Student

  • Christian Griffith, Morehouse College

Most Outstanding AUCC Dual Degree Engineering Students of the Year

This highest honor goes to students who have been extraordinary examples while matriculating and remaining an active participant in the program.

  • Patrick Brobbey, Morehouse College

    Patrick Brobbey

After completing his degree in 2013 in applied physics from Morehouse, Brobbey attended Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis where he will be graduating in May with a degree in electrical engineering. While a student, he worked as a General Motors intern and IUPUI ambassador. Upon graduation, he has accepted career-position with the company.

  • Joshua Mann, Morehouse College

Graduating from the University of Michigan in May, Mann completed his degree in mathematics from Morehouse in 2015. After graduation, he will begin working on his master’s degree.

AUCC Outstanding Achievement Awards

Steven Ragland

This award is presented to students who have displayed outstanding achievement.

  • Kofi Bonner, Third Year, Morehouse College
  • Caleb Davis, Sophomore, Morehouse College
  • Darrell Fambro, Sophomore, Clark Atlanta University
  • Nia Fears, Sophomore, Clark Atlanta University
  • Malik Franklin, Third Year, Morehouse College
  • Melvin Hill, Fourth Year, Morehouse College/Auburn University
  • Ronald Hobson, Fifth Year, Morehouse College/University of Michigan
  • Ronald McCullough Jr., Third Year, Clark Atlanta University
  • Hamim Nigena, Fourth Year, Morehouse College/Georgia Institute of Technology
  • Cedric Porter, Third Year, Morehouse College
  • Joshua Pulliam, Third Year, Morehouse College
  • Steven Ragland, Third Year, Morehouse College
  • Francis Rozier, Second Year, Morehouse College
  • Amadi White, Fourth Year, Spelman College/North Carolina A&T
  • Michael Worthen, Third Year, Clark Atlanta University

Leading By Example Awards

Gabriel Anayanwu

This award is presented to students who know what it means to lead by example.

  • Gabriel Anyanwu, Third Year, Clark Atlanta University
  • K’yal Bannister, Third Year, Spelman College
  • Jeffery Butler, Freshman, Morehouse College
  • Lucius Campbell, Third Year, Clark Atlanta University
  • Travis Clark, Freshman, Clark Atlanta University
  • Zacorian Collins, Third Year, Clark Atlanta University
  • Kayla Dean, Third Year, Spelman College
  • Kamlynne Fontan, Freshman, Spelman College
  • Christian Griffith, Third Year, Morehouse College
  • Lamar Lee Jr., Third Year, Morehouse College
  • Austin Little, Third Year, Morehouse College
  • JaMon Patterson, Sophomore, Clark Atlanta University
  • Tyler White, Third Year, Clark Atlanta University

Excellence Awards

This award if for those who exemplify excellence during the academic year.

India Banks

Mykala Jones

  • Jeremy Robinson

    India Banks, Third Year, Spelman College

  • Latonya Beverly, Sophomore, Clark Atlanta University
  • Saleigh Derico, Sophomore, Spelman College
  • Perry Francois-Edwards, Third Year, Morehouse College
  • Bakari Greene, Third Year, Morehouse
  • Nathan Hines, Third Year, Morehouse College
  • Sylvester Jackson, Third Year, Morehouse College
  • Mykala Jones, Fourth Year, Clark Atlanta University
  • Allen Lee, Freshman, Clark Atlanta University
  • Alexander Meyer, Sophomore, Morehouse College
  • Nacarri Murphy, Fourth Year, Spelman College
  • Steven Ragland, Third Year, Morehouse College
  • Indigo Rockmore, Sophomore, Spelman College
  • Jeremy Robinson, Sophomore, Clark Atlanta University
  • Lelyn Scurlark, Third Year, Morehouse College
  • Umaru Waizoba, Sophomore, Morehouse College
  • Courtney Wallace, Third Year, Clark Atlanta University

Engineering Success Awards

Christopher Jackson

This award is for students who have gone above and beyond in their engineering discipline.

  • Christopher Jackson, Sophomore, Clark Atlanta University
  • Nia Jones, Sophomore, Clark Atlanta University
  • Tori Orr, Fourth Year, Spelman College
  • Wayne Stevens, Third Year, Morehouse College

Shining Star Awards

Frank Adams

Ogechi Irondi

Kayla Newsome

 

  1. Frank Adams, Third Year, Clark Atlanta University
  2. Natasja Baldwin, Freshman, Spelman College
  3. Latonya Beverly, Sophomore, Clark Atlanta University
  4. Jonah Bishop, Fourth Year, Morehouse College/University of Michigan
  5. Deandre Borders, Freshman, Clark Atlanta University
  6. Vincent Chester, Third Year, Morehouse College
  7. Obey-Justice Chiquta, Sophomore, Morehouse College
  8. Malik Farmer, Freshman, Morehouse College
  9. Nyles Fleming, Freshman, Morehouse College
  10. Precious Gibson, Fourth Year, Spelman College
  11. Trent Gilliam, Freshman, Morehouse College
  12. Keyoncé Glenn, Third Year, Clark Atlanta University
  13. Ashlee Gordon, Sophomore, Spelman College
  14. Kanis Grady, Freshman, Clark Atlanta University
  15. Dinushka Herath, Sophomore, Clark Atlanta University
  16. David Holden, Freshman, Morehouse College
  17. Jordan Howie, Third Year, Morehouse College
  18. Ogechi Irondi, Third Year, Clark Atlanta University
  19. Aisha Jackson, Fourth Year, Spelman College/Georgia Institute of Technology
  20. Jefty Jerome, Sophomore, Clark Atlanta University
  21. Mykala Jones, Fourth Year, Clark Atlanta University
  22. Enlylh King, Freshman, Spelman College
  23. Kennedy Kishumbu, Freshman, Morehouse College
  24. Ashley Lofton, Third Year, Spelman College
  25. Khensu-Ra Love El, Sophomore, Morehouse College
  26. Antonio Mallard, Sophomore, Clark Atlanta University
  27. Josuel Musambaghani, Sophomore, Morehouse College
  28. Kayla Newsome, Freshman, Clark Atlanta University
  29. Sarai Neloms, Third Year, Spelman College
  30. Nicholas Porter, Freshman, Morehouse College
  31. Damon-Elliott Redding, Freshman, Morehouse College
  32. Rashaad Robinson, Third Year, Clark Atlanta University
  33. Malik Schkoor, Freshman, Morehouse College
  34. Bob Turay, Fourth Year, Morehouse College
  35. Donovan White, Freshman, Morehouse College
  36. Maxwell Williams, Freshman, Clark Atlanta University
  37. Lauren Winston, Sophomore, Spelman College
  38. Rakiya Winton, Third Year, Clark Atlanta University

Christian Griffith Finesses Academics and Athletics

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This family photo includes Christian’s father Dr. M. Christopher Griffith, Christian, mother Jeana Griffith and sister Jewelian Griffith.

Jeana Griffith went to the stage eight times to stand in for her son Christian. A third-year student at Morehouse, Christian was playing in a SIAC baseball game against Paine College. At the 39th Annual AUC Consortium Dual Degree Engineering Program Networking Event & Awards Ceremony, where there were more than 200 students, family, friends and corporate guests, Mrs. Griffith represented one of the afternoon’s most outstanding students.

“I felt very proud and blessed to receive the awards for my son, [and] it highlighted for me all of the hard work he has done,” said Mrs. Griffith, who wished Christian could have been there to receive the awards himself.  “I also admired his commitment to his team. He sacrificed receiving praise and awards to support his team.  His decision to support his team over individual accolades makes me even more proud of my son and the man that he has become.”

More than 88 awards were presented in seven categories. Held to recognize outstanding dual-degree engineering students from Clark Atlanta University, Morehouse College and Spelman College, more than $200,000 were awarded to the 225 students enrolled in DDEP from the three institutions.

Not only did the 3.95 GPA mechanical engineering major receive academic awards through DDEP, he also received the James E. Haines Sr. Most Scholarly Athlete Award at the Morehouse athletics banquet for having the highest GPA of all the athletics at Morehouse.

Pictured with head baseball coach Robert Mitchell, Christian received the James E. Haines Sr. Most Scholarly Athlete Award at Morehouse.

“Working to be at my best both academically and physically has become a way of life for me. My parents have taught me to never give up and be humble, and that with hard work anything can be achieved,” said Christian, who received both an academic and baseball scholarship to attend Morehouse. “Playing sports has helped teach me time management. I love to win and getting A’s is winning.”

Through AUCC DDEP, member institutions and the engineering institutional partners afford students the benefit of receiving two degrees in approximately five years. Students at the member institutions will attend their institutions for three years. Upon completing the three years, the student will graduate and move on to an engineering institution for an additional two years. After the five-year program, the student graduates holding a Bachelor of Science degree awarded by an AUC Consortium institution, and a Bachelor of Science degree in a specific engineering discipline from the affiliated engineering institution.

Partnering engineering institutions include Auburn University, Clarkson University, Georgia Institute of Technology, Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis, Missouri University of Science & Technology, North Carolina A&T State University, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Rochester Institute of Technology, University of Alabama in Huntsville, University of Michigan, and University of Notre Dame. Of the 11 schools, Christian applied to six – Michigan, Georgia Tech, Rochester, Rensselaer, N.C. A&T and Clarkston.

“I applied to six schools and was accepted to all of them receiving scholarships,” said Christian, who attended Our Lady of Mercy Catholic High School where he played baseball. “I chose Rochester because the engineering school is in the top 100, and I feel I won’t be treated like a number and that I will get to know my teachers and get help from them.”

Located nearly 1,000 miles away from Morehouse, Christian is excited about more than just Rochester being one of the best engineering schools in the country.

“They have an excellent Formula 1 race team. I also am able to play my last year of college baseball there,” he said “and I have a great chance of starting.”

After Rochester, Christian plans on designing sports cars, ultimately becoming the head engineer for a race team.

See all the 39th Annual AUCC DDEP Networking Event & Awards Ceremony recipients.

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