AUCC DDEP Synergy Summit Deemed A Success

March 27, 2024

“As we reflect on the profound impact of the NSBE 50th Annual National Convention and the AUC NSBE Summit, we are reminded of the importance of unity, resilience, and determination in driving positive change,” – Dr. Christopher Ellis, Assistant Director of Engineering Education Innovation for the Atlanta University Center Consortium.

Atlanta – AUCC’s Dual Degree Engineering Program hosted the Synergy Summit alongside the National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE)50th Annual Convention held in Atlanta March 20-24, 2024. The National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE) is one of the largest student-governed organizations based in the United States. NSBE, founded in 1975, supports and promotes the aspirations of collegiate and pre-collegiate students and technical professionals in engineering and technology.

Dr. Christopher Ellis, Assistant Director of Engineering Education Innovation, AUCC

With more than 600 chapters and more than 24,000 active members in the U.S. and abroad, NSBE pursues its mission, “to increase the number of culturally responsible Black Engineers who excel academically, succeed professionally and positively impact the community.” The Atlanta University Center is home to one of those chapters.

“The NSBE 50th Annual National Convention and the AUC NSBE Synergy Summit stand as monumental milestones in the journey of the AUC NSBE (National Society of Black Engineers) and Dual Degree Engineering Program students. The convention and summit served as a transformative experience, providing unparalleled opportunities for growth, networking, and empowerment,” Dr. Christopher Ellis, Assistant Director of Engineering Education Innovation for the Atlanta University Center Consortium.

The event at the AUC was sponsored by corporate partners, The Toro Company and HP.

“For AUC NSBE and Dual Degree Engineering Program students, the convention and summit were platforms to showcase their talents, connect with industry leaders, and gain invaluable insights into the latest advancements in engineering and technology. Through workshops, seminars, and panel discussions, they deepened their knowledge, honed their skills, and expanded their professional networks,” Ellis said.

A highlight of the event was a Fireside Chat led by AUC DDEP alumni Kevin Carpenter, VP of Global Operations and Integrated Supply Chain at The Toro Company, and Ernest Nicolas, Chief Supply Chain Officer at HP, Inc. This series was moderated by Candace Barnes, VP of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion at Papa Johns. They addressed topics such as workplace relationships, and navigating career paths and took questions from students in the audience.

AUC students were able to attend open interviews with representatives from The Toro Company and HP for jobs and internship opportunities.

“The impact of the NSBE 50th Annual National Convention and the AUC NSBE Summit extend far beyond the events themselves. They have inspired our students to dream bigger, reach higher, and strive for excellence in everything they do. By fostering a sense of community, belonging, and empowerment, the convention and summit have ignited a passion for STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) fields and opened doors to countless opportunities for personal and professional development,” Ellis said.

Riley DeLotch/Morehouse College

Riley DeLotch, a freshman at Morehouse College, attended both days of the Synergy Summit and said he enjoyed getting insight from DDEP alumni on resumes, job searching and work experiences and meeting students from the University of Michigan Dual Degree Engineering Program, one of the AUCC’s DDEP partnering institutions.

“This event…It’s all for the greater good. As a freshman, this is a really good experience for me, starting out early, so in the long term, I can find good paying jobs,” DeLotch said.

Braelon Brown/Morehouse College

Braelon Brown agreed. Brown is also a 1st year student at Morehouse College. Of the event he said it was, “Motivating and inspiring to say the least, just seeing people in positions where I strive to be, hearing about Mr. Kevin’s experiences turning that into something.  Mr. Kevin was talking about challenges and adversity and how iron strikes iron, it’s going to make you harder, make you tougher. I took that to that heart.”

Brown talked about an academic experience he is currently facing and how it hit home and he was reminded he needed to keep going.

Ashley Felix/Spelman College  

Ashley Felix, a freshman at Spelman College and a Dual Degree Engineering major who plans to work in architecture or urban planning, said, “Networking is really important. Having certain connections that will get you through the right door is essential. I’ve tried to talk to other people who are also in the program and those doing environmental science or environmental studies.”

Vincent Johns, a University of Michigan student and NSBE conference attendee said he enjoyed his visit to the Atlanta University Center.

“My experience so far here at the AUC has been very great, being exposed to an HBCU and some of the Black culture here. Learning more about the success and the struggles of Black professionals as they went through their college degree programs and into their careers. The biggest thing I learned from hearing from other Black men is never giving up. You’re going to have obstacles and challenges that come your way. That’s not really a reason to quit, that’s a time you need to take some time to reflect and figure out how to move through it and how to learn and grow from that moment,” Johns said.

AUCC DDEP’s next event is its 47th Annual Awards Ceremony, taking place Saturday, April 27 from 11-2p.m. at Morehouse College.



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