Thursday, September 13, 2012

Zimbabwean-Born Businessman Commits $6.4 Million To Send African Students To Morehouse College



ATLANTA – For 17-year-old Abel Gumbo, things couldn’t be better. Only a few months ago he was among more than a thousand students at a high school in the Zimbabwean capital, Harare. Today he is rubbing shoulders with future leaders at Atlanta’s Morehouse College.
Gumbo is one of 10 students from Africa who have been awarded full ride scholarships to Morehouse, beginning this fall. Everything is being paid for by billionaire Strive Masiyiwa, Zimbabwe’s richest man, according to the 2011 Forbes list.
The telecom tycoon has committed $6.4 million in scholarship dollars to send 40 African freshmen to Morehouse over a four-year period. This year’s intake comprises of two teenagers from Burundi and eight from Zimbabwe.
“It’s been an experience,” said Gumbo, who is studying for an undergraduate computer science degree. “I have left everything behind to gain an education in America.  Computer science is technologically more advanced in the States and I am learning a lot about people from different cultures.”
“All international students are housed in the W.E.B. Du Bois International House, where they are placed with a domestic roommate,” said Gwen Wade, Director of International Student Services and Study Abroad Programs at Morehouse College.
“This helps them to transition to life in the U.S., and the cross-cultural communication enables international students to become more involved and aware of U.S. customs, such as food, music and dress.”
“My life has been transformed,” said Prince Abudu, 17, from Zimbabwe, who is also studying computer science. “Morehouse has taught me the spirit of brotherhood and to strive for success.”
The 10 students, who arrived in Atlanta last monthare the first class of the newly-established Ambassador Andrew Young International Scholars program. The international scholarships were set up by the Capernaum Trust, the education arm of Masiyiwa’s Higher Life Foundation.
Higher Life advertised for students throughout Zimbabwe, Burundi and South Africa to fill the highly competitive 10 scholarship slots. More than 500 of the brightest students from across the region applied.
A team from Morehouse flew to Zimbabwe to interview 20 finalists in June. Ten were selected and the others received scholarships to a South African university. The winners were chosen on the basis of their high SAT scores, grueling face-to-face interviews and a written essay.
Indeed, Masiyiwa has high hopes for the recipients of the scholarship. His vision is to develop young talent to become future leaders who will return to work in their native countries.
“My dream is to become an ethical leader,” said Abudu. “I want to be a morally conscious person, who can develop my country through entrepreneurship and business.”
Both boys are from modest backgrounds. Gumbo became an orphan at 10 years old and Abudu is from a single parent household, where his mother struggles to keep the family afloat since his father died in 2004. What makes them stand out is they are driven and academically talented.
“He himself [Strive Masiyiwa] from a very early age, when he was still in Zimbabwe, had heard about Morehouse College and had always wanted to come here,” said Petronella Maramba, executive director of Zimbabwe’s Capernaum Trust, in a recent televised interview with CNN.
“So when the opportunity was afforded to establish a relationship with Morehouse College to further a vision that he’s always had. To develop, young, bright, orphaned children in Africa. To help them develop into leaders who are able, after having obtained a good education in the United States of America, to go back to Africa and give back to the community and develop it further than what’s already been done in the past,” she added.
In fact, Morehouse is on a mission to become a truly global university. This year 26 international students made Morehouse their home, compared with 9 during the last academic school year.
Twenty-two are from Africa, which includes the ten students from Higher Life scholarship program, and three from the Caribbean — two from the Bahamas and one from Jamaica
“The 26 international students of the 2012 freshman class represent the largest incoming international class in the history of Morehouse College,” said Wade.
“We are extremely excited to afford our students, both foreign and domestic, with the opportunity to meet, share, interact and foster relationships with each other for a mutually rewarding experience. This allows all students to better understand and appreciate both our culture, as well as others.”

Methodology: Historically Black Colleges and Universities Rankings


In total, there were 80 HBCUs eligible to be ranked.

September 11, 2012 RSS Feed Print
For the sixth consecutive year, U.S. News & World Report has produced a ranking of the undergraduate education at historically black colleges and universities (HBCU). These colleges were compared only with one another for these rankings. 

How did we choose the schools to be part of the survey? In order to be on the list, a school currently must be listed as part of the U.S. Department of Education's Historically Black Colleges and Universities registry. 
The Higher Education Act of 1965 defines an HBCU as "any historically black college or university that was established prior to 1964, whose principal mission was, and is, the education of black Americans, and that is accredited by a nationally recognized accrediting agency or association determined by the Secretary [of Education] to be a reliable authority as to the quality of training offered or is, according to such an agency or association, making reasonable progress toward accreditation." 
To qualify for the U.S. News ranking, an HBCU also must be an undergraduate baccalaureate-granting institution that enrolls primarily first-year, first-time students and must have been a school that was currently part of the 2013 Best Colleges rankings. In almost all cases, if an HBCU was listed as Unranked in the 2013 Best Colleges rankings, it was also listed as being Unranked in the HBCU rankings (see more details below). In total, there were 80 HBCUs eligible to be ranked, and 8 of those were Unranked. 
The data that were used in the HCBU rankings—except the peer survey results, which used a separate HBCU peer assessment survey—were the same as those published and used in the 2013 edition of the Best Colleges rankings.
The U.S. News rankings system rests on two pillars: It relies on quantitative measures that education experts have proposed as reliable indicators of academic quality, and it's based on our nonpartisan view of what matters in education. The indicators we use to capture academic quality fall into six categories: assessment by administrators at peer institutions, retention of students, faculty resources, student selectivity, financial resources, and alumni giving. 
The indicators include input measures that reflect a school's student body, its faculty, and its financial resources, along with outcome measures—such as graduation rates and freshman retention rates—that signal how well the institution does its job of educating students. 
The HBCU rankings are based on the same statistical methodology and weights used in the Best Colleges 2013 rankings for the schools in the Regional Universities and Regional Colleges ranking categories. Following are detailed descriptions of the statistical indicators and the weights that were used to measure academic quality among the HBCUs that were ranked: 
Peer assessment (weighting: 25 percent): The U.S. Newsranking formula gives greatest weight to the opinions of those in a position to judge a school's undergraduate academic excellence. The peer assessment survey allows the top HBCU academics we consult to account for intangibles such as faculty dedication to teaching. Each individual is asked to rate peer schools' academic programs on a scale from 1 (marginal) to 5 (distinguished). Those who don't know enough about a school to evaluate it fairly are asked to mark "don't know." 
In spring and summer of 2012, U.S. News conducted an exclusive peer survey among only the president, provost, and admission dean at each HBCU. Each HBCU received three surveys. The recipients were asked to rate all HBCUs for their undergraduate academic quality, considering each school's scholarship record, curriculum, and quality of faculty and graduates at schools with which they were familiar. 
The results from this HBCU peer survey were different than those used in the 2013 Best Colleges rankings. A total of 240 HBCU peer assessment surveys were sent out, and 31.3 percent responded. Ipsos Public Affairs, an international market research firm, collected the data.
Retention (25 percent): The higher the proportion of freshmen who return to campus the following year and eventually graduate, the more likely a school is offering the classes and services students need to succeed. This measure has two components: six-year graduation rate (80 percent of the retention score) and freshman retention rate (20 percent). 
The graduation rate indicates the average proportion of a graduating class who earn a degree in six years or less; we consider freshman classes that started from fall 2002 through fall 2005. Freshman retention indicates the average proportion of freshmen entering each fall from 2007 through 2010 who returned the following fall. 
Faculty resources (20 percent): Research shows that the more satisfied students are about their contact with professors, the more they will learn and the more likely it is that they will graduate. We use six factors from the 2011-2012 academic year to assess a school's commitment to instruction. Class size has two components: the proportion of classes with fewer than 20 students (30 percent of the faculty resources score) and the proportion with 50 or more students (10 percent of the score). In our model, a school benefits more for having a large proportion of classes with fewer than 20 students and a small proportion of large classes. 
Faculty salary (35 percent) is the average faculty pay, plus benefits, during the 2010-2011 and 2011-2012 academic years, adjusted for regional differences in the cost of living (using indexes from the consulting firm Runzheimer International). We also weigh the proportion of professors with the highest terminal degree in their fields (15 percent), the student-faculty ratio (5 percent), and the proportion of faculty who are full time (5 percent). 
Student selectivity (15 percent): A school's academic atmosphere is determined in part by the abilities and ambitions of the student body. We therefore factor in test scores of enrollees on both the Critical Reading and Math portions of the SAT and the Composite ACT score (50 percent of the selectivity score); the proportion of enrolled freshmen who graduated in the top 25 percent of their high school classes (40 percent); and the acceptance rate, or the ratio of students admitted to applicants (10 percent). The data are for the fall 2011 entering class. 
U.S. News believes that using both SAT and ACT test scores for all students who submitted test scores improves the methodology since it's a much more comprehensive measure and better way to compare the entire entering class between schools. 
Financial resources (10 percent): Generous per-student spending indicates that a college can offer a wide variety of programs and services. U.S. News measures financial resources by using the average spending per student on instruction, research, student services, and related educational expenditures in the 2010 and 2011 fiscal years. Spending on sports, dorms, and hospitals doesn't count; we only consider the part of a school's budget that goes toward educating students. 
Alumni giving rate (5 percent): The average percentage of living alumni with bachelor's degrees who gave to their school during 2009-2010 and 2010-2011 is an indirect measure of student satisfaction. 
To arrive at a school's rank, we first calculated the weighted sum of its scores. The final scores were rescaled: The top school in each category was assigned a value of 100, and the other schools' weighted scores were calculated as a proportion of that top score. Final scores for each ranked school were rounded to the nearest whole number and ranked in descending order. Schools that receive the same rank are tied and are listed in alphabetical order.
Data sources: Most of the data come from the colleges—andU.S. News takes pains to ensure their accuracy. We obtained missing data from sources such as the American Association of University Professors, the National Collegiate Athletic Association, the Council for Aid to Education, and the U.S. Department of Education's National Center for Education Statistics. Estimates, which are never published by U.S. News, may be used when schools fail to report particular data points. Missing data are reported as N/A in the ranking tables. 
Why is a school Unranked? U.S. News believes that because these schools are unable to report key educational characteristics or because they have certain other characteristics, it would be unfair to try to compare them statistically with the other schools that are part of the rankings. 
We have created a group of Unranked HBCU schools that are listed alphabetically at the bottom of the HBCU rankings table. An HBCU is Unranked if it met any of the following criteria: Those institutions that have indicated that they don't use the SAT or ACT in admissions decisions for first-time, first-year, degree-seeking applicants are not ranked.


Spelman named top historically black college


Graduates of Spelman College listen to actor Danny Glover during commencement ceremonies for the womens' school on May 19, 2002. (Erik S. Lesser/Getty Images)


Spelman College is considered the No. 1 historically black college in the U.S.
The 131-year-old Atlanta school took the top spot on the 2012 U.S. News & World Report list of the nation’s best Historically Black Colleges & Universities (HBCUs).
Nearby Morehouse College also fared well; it ranked No. 3 on the list. Clark Atlanta University tied with North Carolina’s Bennett College and Johnson C. Smith University, and Mississippi’s Tougaloo College for the No. 15 spot.
Other Georgia schools on the list include Fort Valley State University (tied for No. 27), Albany State University (No. 32) and Paine College (tied for No. 36).

Monday, August 27, 2012

Owens released by Seahawks



RENTON, WASH. (AP)

Terrell Owens' NFL return lasted less than three weeks.
Owens was released by the Seattle Seahawks on Sunday, part of the league-mandated roster reductions from 90 to 75 players.
The 38-year-old receiver posted a message on his Twitter account shortly before 11 a.m. that he had been released and the Seahawks made the move official in the afternoon.
"I'm no longer a Seahawk," Owens tweeted. "I THANK the organization 4 the opportunity, I'm truly blessed beyond belief. My FAITH is intact & will NOT waiver."
Owens wasn't the only veteran to get cut by the Seahawks. Offensive linemen Deuce Lutui and Alex Barron both had their veteran contracts terminated, while Seattle waived/injured defensive back Roy Lewis (knee), tight end Cameron Morrah (toe), defensive tackle Pep Levingston (knee) and linebacker Jamison Konz (shoulder).
Owens signed a one-year deal with Seattle on Aug. 7, following a sterling workout that had coaches and Seahawks staff raving about how good he looked for having not played an NFL game in more than 18 months.
"We really liked the group that we assembled. Terrell came in here and busted his tail and he looked really effective right from the start," Seattle coach Pete Carroll said. "But as we just took a look at our guys that are coming through the program and growing up with us we thought that it would be best for us to stay with those guys."
Owens signed just before Seattle's first preseason game and made his debut in the second week against Denver. But his preseason performance was more notable for the passes he dropped than anything he caught.
Owens dropped a potential 46-yard touchdown against Denver on a perfect throw from Matt Flynn. He failed to make a catch in any of his five targets against the Broncos and then had another glaring drop against Kansas City on Friday night.
He finished the preseason with just two receptions — a 40-yard catch from Russell Wilson where Owens had to slow down and lean back to haul in the pass and a 1-yard reception on a screen.
For as impressive as his long catch was in Seattle's 44-14 win over the Chiefs, it served as Owens' only highlight in a Seahawks uniform.
Owens was trying to make a comeback after not playing since Week 15 of the 2010 season while with Cincinnati. He sat out the entire 2011 season following surgery on his left knee and failed to receive any offers.
Owens got the rust off this spring playing for the Allen Wranglers of the Indoor Football League. He had 35 catches for 420 yards and 10 touchdowns while playing eight of 11 games, but was released and lost an ownership stake in the team in May.
Owens, a third-round draft choice by San Francisco in 1996, has started 201 of the 219 regular-season NFL games he has played in his career. He has 1,078 receptions for 15,934 yards and 153 touchdowns — the second most in league history.
His nine seasons with at least 1,000 yards receiving and 13 years with at least 50 catches rank third. His total receptions are sixth on the NFL career list. Owens spent eight seasons with San Francisco, two with Philadelphia, and three with Dallas before a pair of one-year stints with Buffalo and Cincinnati.
"I've been rehabbing and working out for the past year since the injury and that's all I've ever wanted since I've been out is another opportunity," Owens said following his first practice on Aug. 8. "That has been given to me by the Seattle Seahawks and again I am very grateful for that."
Among Seattle's other cuts to reach the 75-man limit were wide receiver Phil Bates, running backTyrell Sutton, cornerbacks Ron Parker and Donny Lisowski and offensive lineman Edawn Coughman.

Several Howard Football Players Face Suspension for Nation’s Classic, Additional Games



The Washington Post today reports that up to 14 Howard University football players may be suspended for the Bison season opener against Morehouse College in the Nation’s Classic. Some players may miss up to three games, all related to the ongoing investigation into textbook allowance scandal that forced the brief suspension of all HU athletic teams in March.
(HU Head Football Coach Gary) Harrell said the list of ineligible players could include sophomore quarterback Greg McGhee, the reigning Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference rookie of the year, and senior linebacker Keith Pough, the MEAC preseason defensive player of the year. If McGhee were to miss time, Harrell said quarterback duties would fall to junior Randy Liggins Jr. and freshman Jamie Cunningham.

HU Hospital Among Those Chosen For Best Fed Beginnings National Initiative


Posted by: Brittany Ireland on 27 August, 2012 in Howard UniversityLifestyleNews
The National Initiative for Children’s Healthcare Quality has selected 90 hospitals to participate in Best Fed Beginnings, a national effort to improve breast-feeding support by nurses.
Medstar Franklin Square Medical Center, Baltimore; Howard County General Hospital, Columbia, Md.; Inova Alexandria Hospital, Alexandria, Va.; Inova Loudoun Hospital, Leesburg, Va.; Howard University Hospital, Washington, D.C.; and Providence Hospital, Washington, D.C., were among the hospitals chosen.
According to a news release, facilities participating in the 22-month learning collaborative, funded by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, will work with national breast-feeding and quality improvement experts to implement the “10 Steps to Successful Breast-Feeding” established by the World Health Organization/UNICEF Baby Friendly Hospital Initiative. 

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Winston-Salem State Launches Dual Degree Program with Chinese University



UPDATED August 21,2012
All the cool schools are going global. Just ask North Carolina’s Winston-Salem State University. Winston-Salem State inked a deal with the Hubei University of Chinese Medicine. The Journal of Blacks in Higher Educationrecently reported their partnership, which will send Hubei University students to North Carolina beginning in fall 2014.
The universities are establishing a dual degree program. As a result, the Chinese students will complete their bachelor’s degrees in nursing at Winston-Salem. While Winston-Salem will welcome Hubei students in upcoming years, other HBCUs are engaging the global community through foreign exchange programs, and with funds from The U.S. Department of Education.
In 2011 the education department awarded the American Council on Education (ACE) a grant to increase global opportunities at HBCUs. Seven HBCUs were chosen: Dillard UniversityHoward University, Lincoln University of Missouri, North Carolina A&T University, Savannah State University, Tuskegee University and Virginia State University.
ACE President Molly Corbett Broad explained the need for globalization to keep HBCUs competitive market forces.
“If we don’t better prepare our graduates to join the global workforce here in the 21st century, we’re in danger of falling behind. That is why the Department of Education’s support for this effort and the work of these institutions is so critical,” Corbett Broad said.
These programs take many forms.  Whether bolstering STEM contributions or liberal arts fields of study, connecting students of diverse backgrounds is mutually beneficial. Students from international universities become exposed to the diverse practices and pedagogies of historically black institutions. HBCU students gain real-time academic and social knowledge from students of different nationalities. HBCU students also travel and experience immersion in other countries and cultures.
One should note that many HBCUs boast sizable international student populations. But, students who are not only from other countries, but also other universities can bring and learn different ideas through HBCUs, just as HBCU students can and do bring value to international schools.
With technology flattening relationships in unparalleled ways and fostering international interest in the politics, academics and lifestyles of various cultures, the upcoming Winston-Salem opportunity highlights a need for nation and friend building across the world.
Who better to foster these relationships than college students, noted for openness, studiousness and social ubiquity, ahem, red-cup crunk? Statistical gains will undoubtedly be experienced, but human moments of vulnerability, exposure and expression can remind us that we are more alike than different.
I befriended a foreign exchange student in my department while studying atGrambling State University. An Egyptian native, she gave me an unapologetic Mediterranean perspective of the United States, renewed respect for Islam as she participated in Ramadan during sweltering bayou heat, and lots of laughs as we reflected on our intersecting experiences in Louisiana.
She was impressed that African Americans embrace and possess Arabic names. Mine is Swahili and Arabic. The offspring of conscious HBCU grads, I told her about Kwanzaa and the seventh day being Imani.
After she returned to Cairo, Arab Spring was in full swing. Suddenly a global issue hit home. It was more than documentaries, disappearing Middle Eastern tweets and dinnertime news spots. Was she ok?
It often takes personal connections for people to move from a theoretical understanding of international issues to the goose-bumpy realization that the ones we hold dear could become oppressive regimes’ collateral damage.
Thankfully my friend and her family were fine, but had Grambling not reached an international agreement for her to study there, Arab Spring would not have resounded nearly as clearly.
The United States needs other countries. And students need opportunities to contribute to and benefit from global exchanges.
As healthcare remains politicized and necessary, the possibilities of Winston-Sale’s partnership with Hubei University are limitless. The universities will not only contribute to both communities, but also add value to a very human and needed field, health care. Bring on ’14.
Digest Columnist Imani Jackson is a FAMU College of Law student. A Grambling State University journalism graduate, she was editor-in-chief of The Gramblinite newspaper and a radio talk show host for KGRM 91.5. Her writing has been published in Politic365, Black College Wire, Clutch Magazine, and The Daily American in Somerset, Pa.

Gabby Douglas not being heavily recruited by Spelman, says college president



UPDATED August 21, 2012
Two-time Olympic gold medalist Gabrielle Douglas isn't on the verge of committing to Spelman College -- at least not to the president's knowledge.
TMZ reported that 17-year-old Gabby was being heavily recruited by Spelman College's president, Dr. Beverly Daniel Tatum. The report featured a photo of Douglas holding a Spelman College swag bag. The report and photo went viral. "Vampire Diaries" star Nina Dobrev tweeted to say she'd give Douglas a personal tour of Atlanta, where the prestigious and historically black women's college is located.
The swag bag was real, but during a phone interview with The Huffington Post, Tatum set the record straight on the reports she was in London recruiting Douglas: They're false. The two women never even met each other. And Tatum's decision to see the Olympics in London "had nothing to do with Gabby."
Tatum said she brought the bag -- which contained a Spelman T-shirt and a CD with a track written by a Spelman student called "The Choice to Change the World" -- on the suggestion of a Twitter follower after Tatum had mused about how nice it would be to meet the star athlete.
As for how the bag reached Douglas, that happened courtesy of Helen Smith Price, a friend of Tatum's and a 1979 Spelman graduate. Before Tatum left London, Price mentioned that she would be meeting the gymnast. Although security constraints prevented Tatum from coming along, Tatum asked Price to deliver the Spelman gift bag. She complied, and that's when the photo of Douglas holding the bag was taken.
"I don't really know anything about Gabby other than she won a gold medal," said Tatum. "Any young person with the drive and discipline required to achieve world-class excellence is likely to have what it takes to be successful in college."
Also inside the bag was a note of congratulations to Douglas from Tatum.
"In my note, I told her how proud so many of us are at Spelman College of her achievement," Tatum said. "I said, 'We don't have a gymnastics team at our college, but when you look at colleges I hope you'll look at Spelman.'"
"I was pleased to know that our note of congratulations was delivered," she added.

University in Louisiana Student becomes punching bag for LAPD Officers



Published on August 21st, 2012 | by HBCUBuzz.com Administration
cell phone video (below) of Los Angeles police officers holding down and punching 19-year-old Ronald Weekley Jr. in Venice, California, has surfaced.
Weekley Jr. was picked up outside his home for allegedly skateboarding on the wrong side of the street, on Saturday, reports KTLA-TV.
The video, which some have compared to the Rodney King beating, shows two officers holding Weekley Jr. down while a third officer punches the young man in the face. A fourth officer is speaking into his radio.
A fifth officer appears to be ordering an unidentified citizen, who is recording the beating, to move away. Bystanders are heard, off-camera, screaming at the police officers.
Ronald Weekley Sr. told KTLA-TV: “If you see the videotape, there are about three or four officers on top of my son. Then an officer comes into view, gets down on the ground and hits him in his face, and that’s something you can hear on the tape. The results are, is that he has a broken nose, he has a broken cheekbone and he has a concussion.” Source 

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Georgia Lottery sponsors film festival competition: August 16-19 , 2012 in Atlanta




UPDATE July 31, 2012

ATLANTA – The Georgia Lottery Corp. is the proud title sponsor of the 2012 Peachtree Village International Film Festival that will be held Aug. 16-19 in Atlanta. In conjunction with its partnership with the Georgia Lottery, the festival will hold a 72-Hour Film Competition.

Competition participants must create a film, up to three minutes in length, on a secret subject that will be announced at 6 p.m. July 19, during a press conference that will be simulcast live at www.galottery72hrfilmcompetition.com.

The top three filmmakers will win cash prizes. The top 50 films will be screened during the festival.

Winners will be selected by a panel of celebrity judges, including producer and director Roger Bobb, producer Jonathan Krane, and programming executives Austyn Biggers and Robyn Arrington.

For additional details on the 72-hour film competition, please visit www.pviff.Advertise productscom and www.galottery72hrfilmcompetition.com.

Since its first year, the Georgia Lottery Corp. has returned more than $13.6 billion to the state of Georgia for education. All Georgia Lottery profits go to pay for specific educational programs, including Georgia’s HOPE Scholarship Program and Georgia’s Pre-K Program. More than 1.4 million students have received HOPE, and more than 1.1 million 4-year-olds have attended the statewide, voluntary prekindergarten program.

For more information on the Georgia Lottery Corp., please visit:

Obama’s education initiative will help save HBCUs



UPDATED July 31, 2012
Published on July 28th, 2012 | by HBCUBuzz.com Administration

During the National Urban League’s annual convention in New Orleans, La., President Obama delivered a speech that could be a significant turning point for local HBCUs, Morgan and Coppin State University, who are suffering tremendously from low retention rates.
In a crowd of approximately 3,700 supporters, Obama proposed his new executive order, which seeks to improve educational achievement for African Americans at all levels. Referred to as the “White House Initiative on Educational Excellence for African Americans,” the new order will combine with federal agencies and partnerships nationwide to create a more efficient variety of educational programs available for African American students.
To enable the accessibility of these programs, President Obama has allocated funds within the federal budget to compensate for the resources needed to initiate the order. Obama explained in his speech, “A higher education in a 21st century cannot be a luxury. It is a vital necessity that every American should be able to afford.”
n his speech, Obama highlighted the discrepancies between dropout rates for African American students and the dropout rates of other students nationwide. He noted 8 percent of African American students, between the ages of 16 to 25, drop out from college. The impact is evident in the 14.4 percent rate of unemployed African Americans, which exceeds the national percent rate of 8.2 unemployed Americans.
Likewise, Morgan and Coppin State University mirror these tragic retention rates. With Morgan State reaching an 11 percent graduation rate in a four-year span and Coppin State just at 5 percent, the need for such a reform in African American students is more prevalent than before.
With respect to his initiative, Obama has diagnosed the low retention rate as a myriad of issues, some of which include the expensive costs and the lack of preparatory materials for higher education. He noted the new initiative will exist so, “every child has greater access to a complete and competitive education from the time they’re born all through the time they get a career.”
The Department of Education, the Executive Office, and other cabinet agencies are identifying effective education practices and will incorporate them into the new programs. Once the budget is established for each program, Obama will then officiate the new White House Initiative. Referenced From Examiner 

About the Author

 HBCU Buzz Administration Staff - Teachers, Men and Women, Students and Graduate writers from Historically Black Colleges & Universities.

Baptist leader: Decision not to wed black couple must be a learning experience



The Rev. Fred Luter, head of the Southern Baptist Convention, said a Mississippi pastor's decision to cancel an African-American couple's wedding ceremony was "unfortunate," but a situation that all pastors can learn from.
The leader and first African-American president of the Southern Baptist Convention said Monday that a Mississippi church's decision to not marry a black couple "is unfortunate" and "an isolated incident from which pastors can learn."
The Rev. Fred Luter told the Baptist Press, the official newspaper of the SBC, the church's decision should be not be seen as representing the church's position. 
"It's unfortunate that it happened, but we've got to learn from it, and be able to go on and do what God has called us to do," Luter told the BP.
The First Baptist Church of Crystal Springs, Miss., made headlines last week when its pastor, Stan Weatherford, told Charles and Te'Andrea Wilson one day prior to their wedding that he could not perform the ceremony at the church. 
Couple say Mississippi church blocked wedding because they are black
Weatherford said a small minority of the congregation had spoken out against the marriage being performed at the church because it involved black people. He married the couple at a nearby church instead. 
"The church congregation had decided no black could be married at that church, and that if he went on to marry her, then they would vote him out the church," Charles Wilson told a local news station.
The Wilsons attended the church regularly but were not members.
"What we can learn from it is that we need to talk to our membership about issues," Luter said in the interview published Monday. "I think if the pastor would have talked to more members about this … when this situation occurred … it probably would not have happened the way it happened." 
The paper reported most of the churchmembers did not share the sentiments of the few who objected to the Wilsons' nuptials. 
The SBC has come out against the church's decision and affirmed that racism is against God's will, according to the Baptist faith. 
"The convention's position on race relations is clear: 'In the Spirit of Christ, Christians should oppose racism,'" Roger S. Oldham, a church spokesman, told the Press. 
Luter, a pastor himself, said he felt sympathy for Weatherford. 
"I felt for the pastor because being a pastor myself, I know how awkward situations like that can be, whereby you have a handful of folks who have influence and will cause issues that the other folks are not aware of."

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Hip Hop Prez off to Exciting Start at Dillard University



UPDATED July 26, 2012
By: HBCUBuzz.Com, Jerome D. Bailey
NEW ORLEANS – The new “Hip Hop” President of Dillard University has brought his talents to the Big Easy, already making his presence known on campus.
It wasn’t too long ago on July 1when Dr. Walter Kimbrough or “Hip Hop Prez” took over as the 7thPresident of Dillard University.  Previously Dr. Kimbrough was one of the youngest college presidents in the nation serving as President of Philander Smith College, a small, private historically black college in Little Rock.
Kimbrough has gotten students excited by staying connected with them through his top ranked twitter account, cited in 2010 by Bachelorsdegree.com as one of 25 college presidents to follow on Twitter. (@HipHopPrez) Kimbrough’s account has over 4,000 followers that already consist of many current Dillard students, faculty and staff as well as incoming freshman. Dr. Kimbrough prefers to have direct communication with the Dillard family.
“I really like to meet with the people who work on a campus so one of my practices is the schedule time for anyone to share thoughts about the university, as well as give me a chance to get to know the people.”
“I think if I can talk to 50% then I will have a really good picture of Dillard. “
Well, so far so good for the 7th President. According to his blog hiphopprez.blogspot.com over 10 percent of faculty and staff had already signed up for a time to meet with Dr. Kimbrough by his first day so it may be pretty safe to say that this number may have increased since.
In addition, “Hip Hop Prez” has already given a speech to participants in Dillard’s pre-engineering summer program that is designed to increase the number of minorities and women entering mathematics, science and engineering professions.
Dr. Kimbrough has maintained active memberships in several higher education organizations, including the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators, Association of Fraternity Advisors, and Brothers of the Academy. He presently serves as chair of the archives, history, and public information committee of the United Negro College Fund, and is a past member of the board of directors. He is the author of the book Black Greek 101: The Culture, Customs and Challenges of Black Fraternities and Sororities. After five months, the book was an Essence magazine top 10 best seller, and is currently in its tenth printing. In 2010, he made the coveted Ebony Magazine Power list of the 100 doers and influencers in the African American community, joining the likes of President and Mrs. Obama, Jay-Z, Richard Parsons, Tyler Perry, Debra Lee, Michael Jordan, and Tom Joyner.

Grambling State’s Eddie Robinson now has most wins by a NCAA Division I football coach



UPDATED July 26, 2012
By: HBCUBuzz.ComAdministration 
With the NCAA vacating 111 wins from Penn State coach Joe Paterno, Grambling State coach Eddie Robinson returned to the top of the wins’ list at a Division I school (including Football Bowl Subdivision and Football Championship Subdivsion schools).
Penn State Office of Physical Plant workers cover the statue of former football coach Joe Paterno near Beaver Stadium on Penn State’s campus in State College, Pa., on Sunday. The university announced earlier Sunday that it was taking down the monument in the wake of an investigative report that found the late coach and three other top Penn State administrators concealed sex abuse claims against retired assistant coach Jerry Sandusky.
Paterno’s last win against Illinois on Oct. 29 pushed his total to 409, one more than Eddie Robinson’s 408.
But the NCAA vacated all wins from 1998-2011, the alleged date that former defensive coordinator Jerry Sandusky is thought to have sexually abused children, some of those crimes committed on Penn State’s campus.
Former Florida State coach Bobby Bowden won 377 games, the most at any Football Bowl Subdivision program.
John Gagliardi of Saint John’s in Minnesota, a Division III school, has the most wins of any college football coach with 484.
The NCAA slammed Penn State with an unprecedented series of penalties Monday, including a $60 million fine and the loss of all coach Joe Paterno’s victories from 1998-2011, in the wake of the Jerry Sandusky child sex abuse scandal.
Other sanctions include a four-year ban on bowl games, the loss of 20 scholarships per year over four years and five years’ probation. The NCAA also said that any current or incoming football players are free to immediately transfer and compete at another school.
NCAA President Mark Emmert announced the staggering sanctions at a news conference in Indianapolis. Though the NCAA stopped short of imposing the “death penalty” – shutting down the Nittany Lions’ program completely – the punishment is still crippling for a team that is trying to start over with a new coach and a new outlook.
Sandusky, a former Penn State defensive coordinator, was found guilty in June of sexually abusing young boys, sometimes on campus. An investigation commissioned by the school and released July 12 found that Paterno, who died in January, and several other top officials at Penn State stayed quiet for years about accusations against Sandusky.
Emmert fast-tracked penalties rather than go through the usual circuitous series of investigations and hearings. The NCAA said the $60 million is equivalent to the annual gross revenue of the football program. The money must be paid into an endowment for external programs preventing child sexual abuse or assisting victims and may not be used to fund such programs at Penn State.
“Football will never again be placed ahead of educating, nurturing and protecting young people,” Emmert said.
Emmert had earlier said he had “never seen anything as egregious” as the horrific crimes of Sandusky and the cover-up by Paterno and others at the university, including former Penn State President Graham Spanier and athletic director Tim Curley.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Georgia Lottery sponsors film festival competition



UPDATE July 19, 2012

ATLANTA – The Georgia Lottery Corp. is the proud title sponsor of the 2012 Peachtree Village International Film Festival that will be held Aug. 16-19 in Atlanta. In conjunction with its partnership with the Georgia Lottery, the festival will hold a 72-Hour Film Competition.

Competition participants must create a film, up to three minutes in length, on a secret subject that will be announced at 6 p.m. July 19, during a press conference that will be simulcast live at www.galottery72hrfilmcompetition.com.

The top three filmmakers will win cash prizes. The top 50 films will be screened during the festival.

Winners will be selected by a panel of celebrity judges, including producer and director Roger Bobb, producer Jonathan Krane, and programming executives Austyn Biggers and Robyn Arrington.

For additional details on the 72-hour film competition, please visit www.pviff.Advertise productscom and www.galottery72hrfilmcompetition.com.

Since its first year, the Georgia Lottery Corp. has returned more than $13.6 billion to the state of Georgia for education. All Georgia Lottery profits go to pay for specific educational programs, including Georgia’s HOPE Scholarship Program and Georgia’s Pre-K Program. More than 1.4 million students have received HOPE, and more than 1.1 million 4-year-olds have attended the statewide, voluntary prekindergarten program.

For more information on the Georgia Lottery Corp., please visit:

Chick-fil-A goes public with opposition to gay marriage


 ATLANTA -- Gay rights advocates say they're surprised that the president of fast-food chain Chick-fil-A has taken a public position against same-sex marriage.
Chick-fil-A President Dan Cathy said this week that his privately owned company is "guilty as charged" in support what he called the biblical definition of the family unit.
His comments to the Baptist Press, the news agency of the Southern Baptist Convention, unleashed a mix of criticism and support.
Chad Griffin, president of the Human Rights Campaign that works for same-sex-marriage, said Thursday that Chick-fil-A "has finally come clean" after cloaking its positions for years.
Chick-fil-A in a statement said it has a history of applying biblically-based principles to its business, and that it strives to treat everyone with honor, dignity and respect. 

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