Atlanta University Center Consortium

Celebrating the 40th Honoring Our Best & Brightest

admin

Partner institution 2017 graduates (left to right) Julian Pilate-Hutcherson, Morehouse/Notre Dame; Taira Fowler, Spelman/Notre Dame; Sanura Dewa, Spelman/Columbia University; and Brienne Coates, Spelman/Georgia Tech. Graduates not pictured include: Adrienne Fairbanks, Spelman/IUPUI; Jgenisius Harris, Spelman/Georgia Tech; Ron Hobson, Morehouse/Michigan; Emanuel Peterson Jr., CAU/Michigan; Lewis Jones, Morehouse/Michigan; Jenine McKoy, Spelman/Michigan; Philip Nwachokor, Morehouse/Michigan; Joi Officer, Spelman/IUPUI, Joseph Thibault Twahirwa, Morehouse/Notre Dame; Reginald Wilbourn, Morehouse/North Carolina A&T; Regis Wilbourn, Morehouse/North Carolina A&T.

Ninety-six students received nearly a quarter of a million dollars in scholarships and awards at the 40th Annual AUC Consortium Dual Degree Engineering Program Networking Event and Awards Ceremony, Saturday, April 15, at the Georgia Railroad Freight Depot. Hosted by DDEP graduates Marcus-Tor Strickland and Melody Thomas, the event is held to recognize outstanding dual-degree engineering students from Clark Atlanta UniversityMorehouse College and Spelman College. The awards banquet offers an opportunity to showcase all participants – students, partnering and member institutions, as well as the corporations who sponsor and hire Atlanta University Center students.

AUC schools are a primary feeder for minority students who enter engineering schools, including the No. 1 and No. 3 top bachelor’s degree producing institutions North Carolina A&T State University and Georgia Institute of Technology. AUC students have the benefit of receiving two degrees – one from the home institution and one from the engineering institution – in approximately five years.

Ceremony hosts were Marcus-Tor Strickland and Melody Thomas.

Students received the following awards:

AUCC DDEP Alumni of the Year

  • Corey Harris, Clark Atlanta University/Georgia Institute of Technology

This year’s recipient is the founder and CEO

Corey Harris

of HBIVENTURES LLC, a company that focuses on growth-stage entrepreneurship. His educational credentials include a bachelor’s of engineering and computer science from Georgia Institute of Technology and Clark Atlanta University. He also has an executive MBA from the Michael J. Coles School of Business at Kennesaw State University. His corporate background involves leadership responsibilities including managing teams at AT&T for the international deployment of network services, focusing primarily on network service delivery and assurance. Currently, he serves as a lead product developer for the AT&T Connected Car Team, working to expand AT&T’s reach into the “Internet of Things.” He is working with high school students, the city of Atlanta, and the Atlanta Tech Startup Community to encourage youth to pursue entrepreneurship in science and technology. Harris lives in Woodstock, Georgia, with his wife, Sharon, and their daughters.

Work Study Student Recognition

  • Natasja Baldwin, Freshman, DDEP, Spelman College
  • Imani Bey, Junior, Spelman College
  • Asia Kindley, Sophomore, Spelman College

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

ExxonMobil Achievement Award Recipients

  • Kayla Dean, Fourth-Year, Spelman College/Georgia Institute of Technology
  • Wayne Stevens, Fourth-Year, Morehouse College/Georgia Institute of Technology

ExxonMobil Most Outstanding Fourth-Year Chemical Engineering Student

  • Ogechi Irondi, Clark Atlanta University/Georgia Institute of Technology

ExxonMobil Most Outstanding Third-Year Mechanical Engineering Student

  • Andrew Davis, 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.

  • Marcus McCarty, Morehouse College

McCarty entered Morehouse College as a part of the Dual Degree Engineering Program Fall 2012. While at Morehouse, he pursued a general science degree with a sociology minor. Active in the SGA Senate as well as the marching band and the National Society of Black Engineers during his matriculation at Morehouse, McCarty also served as the Youth Minister at a local Atlanta church. He held two research and development internships with Procter & Gamble, one industrialization internship with Rockwell Automation, and returned to Procter & Gamble for his last internship in business development. McCarty transferred to Auburn University in the fall of 2015 and will complete a combined industrial engineering and mathematics degree in May. He has accepted a full-time position as a category development account manager with Procter & Gamble starting in June. He also intends to simultaneously obtain his graduate degrees in STEM education. He hopes to increase the enrollment and achievement of African-Americans in STEM and to show the benefits of a STEM degree in traditional and nontraditional STEM careers. He loves to give back, whether it through ministry or mentoring and wants to see others fulfill their purpose. His personal mission is McEagle – Making Certain Everyone Achieves, Gains, Leads, Excels.”

AUCC Outstanding Achievement Awards

Pictured left to right are Melvin Hill, Amadi White, Steven Ragland, Mykala Jones, Mya Gibbs, Naomi Edouard, Rakiya Winton and Michael Worthen.

This award is presented to students who have displayed outstanding achievement in their areas of concentration.

  • Arshad Ali, Most Outstanding Graphics Student, Morehouse College
  • India Banks, Most Outstanding Civil Engineering Student, Spelman College/University of Michigan
  • Kayla Dean, Most Outstanding DDEP Poster Presenters, Spelman College
  • Naomi Edouard, First-Year, Spelman College
  • Mya Gibbs, Second-Year, Spelman College
  • Ashlee Gordon, Most Outstanding Third-Year, Spelman College
  • Melvin Hill Jr., Fourth-Year, Morehouse College/Auburn University
  • David Holden, Most Outstanding Computer Science Student, Morehouse College
  • Jordan Howie, Most Outstanding Aerospace Engineering Student, Morehouse College/University of Michigan
  • Ogechi Irondi, Fourth-Year, Clark Atlanta University/Georgia Institute of Technology
  • Christopher Jackson, Most Outstanding Third-Year Student, Clark Atlanta University
  • Mykala Jones, Fourth-Year, Clark Atlanta University/Georgia Institute of Technology
  • Ashley Lofton, Fourth-Year, Spelman College/Georgia Institute of Technology
  • Tamia Middleton, Most Outstanding First-Year Student, Spelman College
  • Paris Napue, First-Year, Clark Atlanta University
  • Kayla Newsome, Most Outstanding Second-Year Student, Clark Atlanta University
  • Steven Ragland, Fourth-Year, Morehouse College/Georgia Institute of Technology
  • Micquel Roseman, Most Outstanding Graphics Student, Clark Atlanta University
  • Francis Rozier, Most Outstanding DDEP Poster Presenters, Morehouse College
  • Donovan White, Most Outstanding Second-Year Student, Morehouse College
  • Amadi White, Fourth-Year, Spelman College/North Carolina A&T
  • Elisa White, First-Year, Spelman College

Pictured left to right are Perry Francois-Edwards, Kayla Dean, Aisha Jackson, Courtney Wallace, Rakiya Winton, Anjali Coryat and Victor Green.

Leading By Example Awards

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

  • Jeffery Butler, Second-Year, Morehouse College
  • Anjali Coryat, Second-Year, Spelman College
  • Kayla Dean, Fourth-Year, Spelman College/Georgia Institute of Technology
  • Perry Francois-Edwards, Fourth-Year, Morehouse College/University of Michigan
  • Victor Green, Second-Year, Clark Atlanta University
  • Aisha Jackson, Fifth-Year, Spelman College/Georgia Institute of Technology
  • Austin Little, Fourth-Year, Morehouse College/Georgia Institute of Technology
  • Jamila Moses, Fourth-Year, Spelman College/Georgia Institute of Technology
  • Josuel Musambaghani, Third-Year, Morehouse College
  • Hamim Nigena, Fifth-Year, Morehouse College/Georgia Institute of Technology
  • Indigo Rockmore, Third-Year, Spelman College
  • Courtney Wallace, Fourth-Year, Clark Atlanta University/North Carolina A&T
  • Rakiya Winton, Fourth-Year, Clark Atlanta University/Georgia Institute of Technology

Excellence Awards

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

  • Ariel Austin, First-Year, Spelman College
  • India Banks, Fourth-Year, Spelman College, University of Michigan
  • Jeffery Butler, Second-Year, Morehouse College
  • Imani Carson, First-Year, Spelman College
  • Saleigh Derico, Third-Year, Spelman College
  • Kanis Grady, Second-Year, Clark Atlanta University
  • Bakari Greene, Fourth-Year, Morehouse College, University of Michigan
  • David Holden, Second-Year, Morehouse College
  • Tyler Houston, Second-Year, Morehouse College
  • Kennedy Kishumba, Second-Year, Morehouse College
  • Alexander Meyer, Fourth-Year, Morehouse College/Georgia Institute of Technology
  • Nacarri Murphy, Fourth-Year, Spelman College/Indiana University – Purdue University Indianapolis
  • Eric Patterson, First-Year, Morehouse College
  • Jeremy Robinson, Third-Year, Clark Atlanta University
  • Shakirah Rogers, First-Year, Spelman College
  • Malik Schkoor, Second-Year, Morehouse College
  • Courtney Wallace, Fourth-Year, Clark Atlanta University/North Carolina A&T
  • Tyler White, Fourth-Year, Clark Atlanta University/North Carolina A&T

Pictured left to right are Roger Louisaire, Khristopher Shemwell and Chuck Harrell.

Engineering Success Awards

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

  • Chuck Harrell, Second-Year, Morehouse College
  • Roger Louisaire, Third-Year, Morehouse College
  • Nicholas Porter, Second-Year, Morehouse College
  • Khristopher Shemwell, First-Year, Morehouse College

Pictured left to right are Najma Thomas, Simone Paul, Hannah Floyd, Darrell Fambro, Lamar Lee, Nia Jones, Dinushka Herath, Saidah Coleman, Tamia Middleton, Theodore Cruz, Mykala Jones, Morgan Lipkins, Natasja Baldwin, Kayla Dean and Donovan White.

Shining Star Awards

  1. Frank Adams, Fourth-Year, Clark Atlanta University/North Carolina A&T
  2. Natasja Baldwin, Second-Year, Spelman College
  3. Saidah Coleman, Second-Year, Spelman College
  4. Theodore Cruz, Second-Year, Morehouse College
  5. Kayla Dean, Fourth-Year, Spelman College/Georgia Institute of Technology
  6. Darrell Fambro, Third-Year, Clark Atlanta University
  7. Hannah Floyd, Third-Year, Spelman College
  8. Dinushka Herath, Third-Year, Clark Atlanta University/Georgia Institute of Technology
  9. Jordan Howie, Fourth-Year, Morehouse College/University of Michigan
  10. Lamar Lee, Third-Year, Morehouse College
  11. Morgan Lipkins, Second-Year, Spelman College
  12. Mykala Jones, Fourth-Year, Clark Atlanta University/Georgia Institute of Technology
  13. Nia Jones, Third-Year, Clark Atlanta University
  14. Tamia Middleton, First-Year, Spelman College
  15. Ashley Murphy, Third-Year, Spelman College
  16. Simone Paul, Third-Year, Spelman College
  17. Cedric Porter, Third-Year, Morehouse College
  18. Rashaad Robinson, Fourth-Year, Clark Atlanta University/North Carolina A&T
  19. Najma Thomas, First-Year, Spelman College
  20. Donovan White, Second-Year, Morehouse College

See more photos.

Marcus-Tor Strickland

admin

Marcus-Tor Strickland is an Atlanta native with a passion for uplifting and empowering his community. This passion was instilled in him at an early age through childhood volunteer experiences with Hosea Williams Feeds the Hungry Holiday initiatives. The desire to develop those around him has led to his various roles as a corporate and community leader. As a corporate engineer, Marcus-Tor has managed large-scale projects regarding business and manufacturing processes and quality analysis and improvements for Fortune 500 companies such as Clorox, Nucor, GM and Time Warner.

With continuous involvement in culture building affinity groups, Marcus-Tor has developed numerous programs geared toward increasing employee engagement in organizational processes. In addition to taking an active leadership role in his corporate undertakings, Marcus- Tor continues to impact his local community.

As an adviser to the i21 STEM NSBE Jr. Chapter, a group of aspiring engineers supported by the AUC NSBE chapter, and an assistant Scout Master of Boy Scout Troop 100, Marcus-Tor continues to impact his local community by sharing his personal and professional knowledge with the next generation.

Marcus-Tor is an AUCC Dual Degree Engineering Program participant who attended Morehouse College and graduated in 2008 with a bachelor’s degree in mathematics and the Missouri University of Science and Technology graduating in 2012 with a bachelor’s in electrical engineering.

Melody Thomas

admin

Melody Thomas is a Dual Degree Engineering Program graduate with a Bachelor of Science in Physics from Clark Atlanta University and a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from Indiana University Purdue University – Indianapolis.

While attending IUPUI as a full-time student, she had the opportunity to intern at Jacobs Engineering Group, a global provider of technical, professional, and scientific services, including engineering, architecture, construction, operations and maintenance.

As a mechanical intern in Jacobs’ pharmaceutical and biotechnology market, some of Thomas’ duties included supporting senior engineers in the design of HVAC systems via AutoCAD, assisting with site takeoffs of existing building conditions, and maintaining client contacts, milestone schedules, and co-leading weekly client project meetings. Soon after, Thomas joined Jacobs as a part-time cost analyst, gaining some unique experience for someone who had pursued an engineering education.

Upon graduation, she continued at Jacobs as a full-time employee, but could not shake her desire to be farther south. Having finally found her passion, Thomas recently relocated to Atlanta, where she is now a roadway designer for ARCADIS, the leading global design and consultancy firm for natural and built assets.

Outside of her career, Thomas enjoys spending time with family, friends and her new puppy. Now that she has returned to Atlanta, she is looking forward to becoming active in the community as a proud member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc. and Elizabeth Baptist Church, and enjoying the wonderful weather in “Hotlanta.”

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

admin

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

admin

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

admin

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

admin

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

admin

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

admin

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.

1 2
Secured By miniOrange