Sunday, May 31, 2009

$50 Million Social Innovation Fund To Target Education, Health, Economy

First Lady Michelle Obama outlined education, health care and economic opportunity as three focus areas for the administration’s efforts to promote social innovation and entrepreneurship as a means to solve some of the nation’s problems.

Those themes will key the $50 million Social Innovation Fund approved as part of the $5.7-billion Edward M. Kennedy Serve America Act, signed by President Barack Obama last month.

"The idea is simple: to find the most effective programs out there and then provide the capital needed to replicate their success in communities around the country that are facing similar challenges," Obama said. "By focusing on high-impact, result-oriented nonprofits, we will ensure that government dollars are spent in a way that is effective, accountable and worthy of the public trust."
Read full article.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Message from New York Chapter President

BDPA New York is the 7th largest chapter in the nation. One reason for their success is the inspired leadership of its president, Judaea Lane. Judaea has the remarkable ability to keep many different balls in the air at the same time.

Here is message she issued today for her chapter stakeholders:

The Executive Team of BDPA New York Chapter wish everyone a happy and safe Memorial Day. We also say thanks to our country's backbone - our soldiers past and present for their dedicated commitment to serve.

You are cordially invited to join us at our Book Signing Party and our Scholarship & Recognition Awards Ceremony.

Book Signing Party features authors William Rolack and Julwel Kenney. William Rolack is president of NAAAHR (National Association of African Americans in Human Resources) Greater New York and author of the book 7 Secrets to a Job Winning Interview: An HR Executive Reveals why Some People Get an Offer--and Other's Don't.

Julwel Kenney is a performance improvement and leadership development consultant and is author of the book "How To Bring Out The Best In You: The Journey to Personal Transformation and Leadership". This event takes place Thursday, May 28th beginning at 6:00 PM at Done Up Salon located 1026 Sixth Avenue. Complimentary Food and Drinks will be served. You can find addition information here.

We are excited to invite you to our Chapter Scholarship & Education Awards Ceremony on Thursday, June, 11 2009 at 6:00pm. The ceremony will be held at UBS located at 299 Park Ave, New York, NY. During this celebration, we will announce our BDPA New York scholarship recipients, acknowledge our 2009 Student Information Technology Education and Scholarship (SITES) students and recognize our dedicated volunteers and community partners.

Also we will recognize our corporate sponsors, for which our work as a chapter will not be possible. Proceeds from both events will support our SITES academic scholarships and local community projects.

Kudos to our New York Team - Our SITES students are technically on the move. For approximately eight months, they have challenged each other to see who will be selected to represent BDPA New York at our upcoming Regional and National Conferences. We are happy to report that ten (10) students have been selected to compete in 2009 High School Computer Competition (HSCC) and IT Showcase at BDPA Northeast Regional Technical Conference. This event takes place at Bowie State University in Maryland during the weekend of June 19-21.

Also, thanks to Dr. Jesse Bemley, several of our SITES students have been selected to attend and participate in TeraGrid Computing Conference, which showcase the capabilities, achievements, and impact of the TeraGrid in research and education. The results of this experience will give our students the opportunity to increase their technological prowess.

Last thanks to UBS, one of the world's leading financial firm, two of our SITES students are going on an interview for an student internship position.

As you can see, we are extremely proud of our students, who will represent New York Chapter. Join me in showing BDPA-love and support at our upcoming June 11th event.

In summary, I look forward to having a great turnout at our upcoming events. For additional information about the above, please contact us via phone at (212) 802-5341 or our chapter website or our Facebook page.

Use the COMMENTS section to share your thoughts about Judaea's message.

Friday, May 29, 2009

Short on Cash, Companies Give Time, Skills

With need surging and dollars available for donations limited by the down economy, corporations are increasingly turning to ways besides writing checks to serve their communities.

The trend, which has been growing in recent years, is accelerating this year, according to United Way of American spokesman Sally Fabens.

Fabens estimates corporate cash donations to the organization decreased about 3% in 2008, with financial and automotive companies "expectedly" contributing far less than usual.

But the charitable organizations it represents, she says, increasingly are receiving in-kind donations and pro-bono assistance.

Read the full article.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Securing Our Digital Future

The photo is just for comedy relief. Click here to learn more about the very serious review and recommendations on cybersecurity announced earlier today by President Obama.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Survey: Nonprofits Slammed by Economic Crisis

More than 25 percent of 300 nonprofits experienced negative cash flow in the last year, and many have had to borrow money to make payroll and benefits payments, according to a survey released Wednesday by the Community Foundation for Palm Beach and Martin Counties and Allegany Franciscan Ministries.

Read full text.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Grant Proposal: Northrop Grumman Foundation

BETF and BDPA Los Angeles submitted a joint grant proposal to Northrup Grumman. We requested $5,000 in support of the 2009 SITES program being conducted in Los Angeles. Our internal champion at Northrop Grumman is past chapter president Andree Justin.

Northrop Grumman is committed to be a responsible corporate citizen and support communities throughout the United States, particularly where their employees live and work, with financial, in-kind and volunteer resources. Through the Contributions Program, the Company seeks to address critical issues and needs by providing financial assistance to accredited schools and 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations.

The company focuses a substantial portion of its contributions on programs which address education, services for veterans and the military, health and human services, as well as the environment.

We should have an answer by mid-June. We will keep you informed of our progress.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Message from Greater Columbia Chapter President

I have known Paulette Johnson-Davis for many years. She is a powerful BDPA leader with prior service as conference director and chapter president. Paulette recently resumed her role as president of the BDPA Greater Columbia chapter.

She shared the following message with chapter stakeholders:

Don’t forget to save the dates and plan to join us for our first BDPA Greater Columbia Technology Summit!

We have two days filled with events for the IT professional. Friday, 6/12, will include a Technology Lunch and an after-work networking social, and the Technology Summit will be on Saturday, 6/13. Here are the
summit flyer and registration form.

We have a special rate at the
Columbia Marriott for those who wish to make it a weekend and stay on Friday or Saturday night. The special rate is $99/night. The code is “bdp”, or BDPA.

More details will be sent next week. In addition to our BDPA Founder,
Earl A. Pace Jr., as the keynote speaker, we’ll have a dynamic workshop on Entrepreneurship, a workshop on Coaching and Mentoring, and a CIO panel discussion.

We’re looking forward to having a great turnout, with your support.

Feel free to contact me or any of the
local officers if you have any questions or need additional information.

Paulette Johnson-Davis, President
BDPA Greater Columbia Area Chapter

Are you planning to attend the 2009 Technology Summit in South Carolina?

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Message from Philadelphia Chapter President

BDPA Philadelphia is the 2nd largest chapter in the nation. Monique Berry is the Philadelphia chapter president. She is part of the team that earned 'Chapter of the Year' honors for the past two years.

She shared the following message with her chapter stakeholders this month:

Happy New Year! And I mean it!

Yes, I know it's May but we've been focused on the never-ending doom and gloom of the economy for the past several months. Doom, gloom become negative thoughts producing negative energy and the beginning of self-fulfilling prophecy. Don't buy into it! Yes, this has been a tough year, but we can and will get through it.

And, while BDPA (or any association, be it NBMBAA, NSBE, PMI) may not be uppermost in your mind during troubled times, it is precisely where you want to be. We need our friends and colleagues around us. We need to laugh, to socialize, to commiserate a little, to network. And, we need BDPA for new ideas, new tools, and new skills to survive the months ahead.

Today, my New Year's resolution is Resilience through Relationships. Now, more than ever, our partnerships, friendships and relationships are key to our sustained success. We must increase and actively cultivate our networks. Reach out to help others and they will reach out and help you. It's not always instant gratification, but you'd be surprised at how powerful these connections can be - especially when you need them the most.

Although vast in scope, the information technology family in Philadelphia is quite small. Who do you know? Who would you like to know? How are you going to make it happen? BDPA provides you with great opportunities to meet people, who may know people who know people - see? It's all a game of numbers...for business leads, new employment opportunities or answers to life's burning questions.

So, this year, MY last year as chapter president - it's about YOU, the member. How might we help you? What do you need? Email your thoughts and ideas to me. I promise to respond.

Happy New Year or New Career!

Monique Berry, President
BDPA Philadelphia Chapter

I understand that Monique may be a candidate to serve as National BDPA president in 2012-2013. We would be lucky to have her unique talents and skills in that office. I hope that she follows through to 'make it so'.

What say u?

This Week in BDPA (May 24-30)

BDPA has 51 chapters around the nation. You can always find programs, services or networking activity here or here. BDPA supports your efforts for career advancement in the IT industry.

Are you taking advantage of these programs? Here is a weekly preview of upcoming events gathered from the centralized BDPA calendar :
We encourage all BDPA leaders to take advantage of the centralized BDPA CollectiveX Groupsite Calendar to post your upcoming events! Please let us know of other BDPA events that we may have missed. Most importantly, let us know if you plan to attend any BDPA events this week.

Finally, I hope you will consider making a tax-deductible online donation to the BDPA Foundation in honor of Darius Gaines (HSCC Alumni 2005-2007). Do it now!

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Grant Proposal: Toyota USA Foundation

BETF and BDPA New York submitted an online grant application to Toyota USA Foundation. We requested $5,000 in support for the 2009 SITES program in NYC. Denise Hamilton and Renetta English were very helpful in pulling together information for this grant proposal. We should have an answer within 45 days.

Toyota believes that helping people improve the quality of life in their communities is an essential corporate responsibility. Education is the focus of Toyota's giving. In addition to funding national programs, Toyota supports the social well-being of communities where it has major operations (Alabama, California, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, New York, Texas and West Virginia). This includes assistance for Arts & Culture and Civic & Community Development, Health & Human Services.

Our grant proposal went to Toyota Motor North America (TMNA). TMNA focuses on organizations in the New York City area with programs directed at children and families and environmental education.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Grant Recipient: BDPA Triangle ($5,000)

The BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) is pleased to announce approval of funding request from BDPA Triangle chapter in the amount of $5,000.00. This grant provides the chapter with 'seed money' to secure building and other start-up costs for BDPA-BETF Benefit Concert on Friday, August 7, 2009 at the Progress Energy Center for the Performing Arts in Raleigh, NC.

Denise Holland (National BDPA), Rick Leggett (BDPA Triangle) and Wayne Hicks (BETF) signed a memorandum of understanding in support of this Benefit Concert project earlier this year. Proceeds will support the BETF Endowment Fund and the BDPA Triangle chapter SITES program.

BETF directors expressed interest in working with Triangle chapter on funding for their 2010 SITES program. We look for them to explore increased funding opportunities through United Way, Combined Federal Campaign or joint grant proposals.

I hope that all of you plan to attend our August 7th Benefit Concert!

Thursday, May 21, 2009

HSCC Testimonial: Angela Bell (Los Angeles)

There are young people from all over the country preparing to compete in the 2009 national BDPA High School Computer Competition (HSCC) to be held in Raleigh NC. I thought it would be enlightening for all of us to hear from the voice of one of those students. Here is testimonial from Angela Bell, an experienced HSCC student in our Los Angeles chapter:

The 2008 National BDPA Technology Conference was an event that will remain in the back of our minds for years to come. It was held at the Hyatt regency Hotel in Atlanta, Georgia. All twenty-three teams arrived determined and hungry for college scholarships.

The Los Angeles chapter team consisted of five very skilled and talented individuals; Tyrone Hinderson, Candace Wade, Terrell Allen, Evan Angcos, and myself (Angela Bell -team captain). The team arrived with first place in mind. We wanted to redeem ourselves from the 8th place loss in 2007.

[L-R: Candace Wade, Kelly Hill(chaperone), Tyrone Hinderson, Evan Angcos,
Clyde Hill (chaperone), John Malonson (coordinator), Angela Bell, TBD and TBD]

The first event was a Round Robin. In this event each team was seated at a table and had a stack of cards in front of them with questions on BDPA history, HSCC history, general computer history and programming language. There was a facilitator who asked each team a question and that team had 15 seconds to answer it. Our team did very well answering 100% of the questions correct. After this event our spirits were high and we believed that we had a chance to blow Southern Minnesota (2007 winner) out of the water.

Moving on to the second event, which was an individual Quiz Factory test. Quiz Factory is a test that contains multiple choice, fill in the blank and short answer questions on BDPA history, HSCC history, computer history, computer knowledge, and programming language. In this event, each individual person from every team would be placed in a room and use the Quiz Factory program on a computer to complete the test. The test is 15 minutes long and has well over 400 questions on it. We did well in this portion of the competition with each team member answering between 150 and 400 of the questions correctly.

Moving on to the last, the longest, and the most important part of the competition, building a dynamic web application from business case requirements. In this portion of the competition, each of the teams are in a banquet hall with one computer per team. Each team was given identical prompts containing specific content for a web page and were to create a working page with all of the given information. Our team felt prepared for this because we had practiced numerous times on completing a similar task. We pushed through a few snags but ultimately completed the application. We presented our solution and believed that we did well enough to be placed in the top 5.

During the closing ceremonies, we arrived and were all anxious to hear of our victory. The top 5 teams were announced and we were all shocked. We couldn't believe that our chapter was not called. We went into the hallway and saw that we received 13th place and at that moment our hearts sank. We vowed to place in the top 5 for the 2009 competition and this year’s team is determined to make that dream come true.

We train over 800 students each year. We need our supporters to help us raise the funds necessary to work with students like Angela. Won't you make a secure online donation today?

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

HSCC Testimonial: Lauren Pemberton (Southern Minnesota)

Sometimes people doubt us when we say that BDPA is open to anyone regardless of race, color or national origin. Perhaps the doubt will go away as you read the following testimonial from Lauren Pemberton. Lauren is one of the few students in our history to compete at the national level in four separate years. In addition, she is one of four students in BDPA history to be a 3-time national HSCC champion! She joins HSCC alumni Kunle Roberts and Mackale Joyner at Rice University.

Here are her thoughts on her SITES experiences:

My name is Lauren Pemberton, and I am currently attending Rice University. I was involved with HSCC from 2005 to 2008, and it greatly influenced my plans for the future. I am planning on majoring in computer science and seeing what job opportunities the degree opens up for me. I hope to find a job that includes traveling, meeting inspired and intelligent people, and working on innovative projects.

From the moment I attended my first class with BDPA, I was addicted to learning all I could about programming, computers, design, and anything else my teachers mentioned. I felt that if I did not go, I was missing something valuable and interesting, so I continued to attend every Saturday. It was certainly a unique experience to have such a creative, stimulating, and accepting environment available every weekend.

Being a new member of BDPA and new to the concept of programming itself, I was surprised and honored when chosen as a member of the five-person team for the 2005 conference in Detroit. I was assigned the job of presentation coordinator and familiarized with the competition details. After a summer filled with concentrated preparation, I was elated when we won 1st place in the High School Computer Competition. These emotions carried me into the next year as I was determined to be even more involved than before.

The coursework invigorated me once again and I learned entirely new concepts in my second year with BDPA. I accomplished my goal to be more involved when I became project manager for our team in 2006. We traveled to Los Angeles with a new team, and we won 2nd place after a fun and exciting conference. This victory was even more meaningful because I had played a bigger role in the process, and our team had learned many new things that year. I knew that if we continued to study hard and focus on teamwork, we would be an even greater competitor the following year.

In 2007, I was once again project manager, and we traveled to the nation’s capital hoping to represent our chapter well. Our hard work resulted in our team winning 1st place in Washington, D.C. This was one of the proudest moments of my life. Our team had sought to improve and demonstrate our skills in programming and teamwork, and we were successful.

The following year, we continued our winning streak by achieving 1st place in Atlanta, Georgia. My previous participation in the competition did not dampen my emotions, as I was just as anxious, delighted and grateful to win the grand prize. It was a fantastic way to end my high school career with BDPA, and I will never forget my four amazing years of participation in the HSCC.

I am not considered a minority in my “normal” life, but I am fortunate enough to have been able to exist in such a situation with the HSCC because it has changed my outlook on life forever. I was welcomed into BDPA and their programming class by supportive teachers and motivated students like myself. When I joined this class, I was under the notion that I was not a minority, but now I know what I am … I am a teenager who knows how to program in PHP and has a passion for learning. I know that I would never have become the knowledgeable and strong person I am today if I had not joined this outstanding program.

We look forward to following the progress of this Bemley Scholar! She is one of the reasons that the BDPA Foundation seeks donations from you as often as we do. Your donations allow us to increase the scholarship funding. Anyhow, what are your thoughts about Lauren's testimonial?

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Business Compute-N-Show: Computer Troubleshooting and Fixes Made Easy (Video)

April Jackson, Desktop Support Specialist and BDPA Memphis member, is interviewed on the Business Compute-N-Show by host Nancy Ford in Memphis, TN. This show originally aired in September 2008.

Do you do fix and troubleshoot your computer ... or do you need to call someone else to do it for you?

ITSMF and BETF Online Executive Auction

BDPA Education & Technology Foundation (BETF) and Information Technology Senior Management Forum (ITSMF) are proud to announce the launch of an online executive auction. We plan to auction off at least one hour of an executive's time that will allow the winner an opportunity to network with senior level executives around the nation.

The bidding process will open up later this month. The winning bids will be announced on August 7, 2009. This is a unique opportunity for many BDPA members to have private time with some high-level folks in our industry.

Some donor-participants include:
  1. Chairperson, Information Technology Senior Management Forum (Newark)

  2. Chief Executive Officer, Keene Advisory Group (Chicago)

  3. Chief Executive Officer, Strategic Staffing Solutions (Detroit)

  4. Chief Innovation Officer, National Underground Railroad Freedom Center (Cincinnati)

  5. CIO, City of Chicago (Chicago)

  6. CIO, Cox Enterprises (Atlanta)

  7. CIO, Deloitte (Atlanta)

  8. CIO, GE Healthcare (Milwaukee)

  9. CIO, Moraine Valley Community College (Chicago)

  10. CIO, MetricStream (San Francisco)

  11. CIO, Motorola (Chicago)

  12. Former CIO, Delta Airlines (Atlanta)

  13. Founder, National BDPA (Philadelphia)

  14. General Manager, Microsoft (Detroit)

  15. President, Blackwell Consulting Services (Chicago)

  16. President, NMBAA Chicago Chapter (Chicago)

  17. President, Premier Event Management (Seattle)

  18. President, (Bay Area)

  19. Vice President, Allstate Insurance (Chicago)

  20. Vice President, Motorola (Chicago)

This should be fun!

HHS Announces Capacity Building Grants to Strengthen Nonprofits

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced that $50 million in grant funding is now available through the Strengthening Communities Fund (SCF), a new fund created by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. HHS will grant two-year awards of up to $1 million to strengthen nonprofit and faith-based organizations that are aiding families and communities struggling in the economic downturn. Grantees must provide at least 20 percent of the total approved cost of the project from non-federal funds.

Read the Council’s analysis for detailed information on how the new capacity building funds will affect Council members. The grant application deadline is July 7, 2009. If you are interested in applying for the new capacity building grants, the Council on Foundations will host an upcoming informational session.

If you have any questions, contact the Council’s Public Policy Department at or 703.879-6000.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Grant Proposal: Wake County Community Foundation

The Wake County Community Foundation provides grants from the Community Endowment Fund to non-profit organizations serving Wake County. Proposals are sought in support of broad charitable purposes in the areas of health and human services, education, the arts, and the conservation and preservation of historical, cultural, and environmental resources. Grants are available for non-profit organizations addressing these needs in the community. The total 2009 grant amount available from the Wake County Community Fund is $2,400. Typical grant amounts range from $1,000-$2,000.

BDPA Triangle chapter and BETF submitted a $1k grant proposal in support of the chapter's SITES program on 4/27/09. The Grants Committee will consider eligible proposals and determine grant awards. Proposals may be awarded in full or in part; awarded with contingencies; or they may be declined. All grant decisions are final. The minimum grant award will be $100. Grant recipients will be informed of the decision made by the Grants Committee by June 15, 2009.

There are community foundations in all 51 chapter cities. Have you researched the one in your area?

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Call for Speakers: BDPA Professional Development Webinar Series

A Call for Speakers is now open for the BDPA Professional Development Webinar Series. They are seeking presenters who are willing to share their experience and expertise with the BDPA community in Project Management, Business Analysis, Technical Development, Networking, Hardware, Software, Leadership, and IT Entrepreneurial topics. Speakers are asked to provide a 45-minute PowerPoint presentation with an additional 10 minutes of Q&A during the webinar.

If you are interested in participating as a webinar speaker, please submit the following:

  • A paragraph describing your topic and your experience in the area of your topic
  • The title for your presentation
  • Two or three specific points that webinar participants will get from the presentation that are applicable to their jobs or career development
  • A photo (optional)
  • Preferred month to give your presentation. Whether you prefer a lunch hour (11:45am - 1:00pm) or after work (6:30 - 7:45pm) webinar time slot. Webinars will be held at least two times throughout the week, the days of the week are flexible at this time.
  • Your contact information (name, title, employer, email address, phone number, and mailing address)
Your submission will be evaluated along with others that have been submitted and you will be notified of an available date and time slot. As a webinar speaker, you will receive a BDPA appreciation certificate and a thank you gift via mail after delivery of your presentation.

This is an opportunity to expose your professional expertise to co-workers, potential clients, or potential employers. It also lets you hone your presentation skills and articulate the work you do. BDPA seeks seasoned speakers as well as first time public speakers.

Once your presentation is accepted, you will be contacted and a BDPA representative will walk you through the preparation process. BDPA will publicize your presentation to their national membership. There will be a practice session utilizing the webinar application and a moderator will be available to manage the webinar session during your presentation.

For more information or to submit your topic, please contact National BDPA professional development manager Jacqueline Sanders.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

BDPA Seeks Webinar Presenters

Are you interested in presenting an information technology topic via webinar to a worldwide audience? If so, check out this message from Jacqueline K. Sanders:

As manager of education and professional development for BDPA, I am always looking for good speakers for the BDPA Professional Development Webinar Series and for industry whitepapers that are ready for publication. Contact me if you are interested or forward this message to someone that might be interested.

A Call for Speakers is now open for the BDPA Professional Development Webinar Series. We seek presenters willing to share their experience and expertise with the BDPA community in Project Management, Business Analysis, Technical Development, Networking, Hardware, Software, Quality Assurance, Process Improvement, Software Methodologies/Tools,Leadership, and IT Entrepreneurial topics. Speakers are asked to provide a 45-minute PowerPoint presentation with an additional 10 minutes of Q&A during the webinar.

I am very pleased to see BDPA stepping up their game with professional development programs designed to advance the careers of African Americans in the IT industry. I encourage you to share your thoughts on this new webinar series!

Friday, May 15, 2009

Grant Proposal: UTC Foundation

BETF and BDPA Boston chapter submitted an online grant application to the UTC Foundation. Our hope is that they will support the youth education programs conducted in the greater Boston area.

UTC is proud to support causes that affect its businesses and employees. UTC funds qualified 501(c)3 organizations that meet its eligibility criteria and operate in the company's focus areas. UTC supports grants in arts and culture, math and science education, and the environment. UTC's grant making is centered on the northeast corridor of the United States; namely our geographic targets are Hartford, Conn., Boston, Mass., New York City, N.Y. and Washington, D.C.

UTC Corporate Headquarters accepts online grant applications throughout the year. Applicants are eligible to apply for a grant one time per calendar year and will receive notification within one quarter of their application submission. UTC accepts grant applications only online, and applicants will be notified only by e-mail if additional information is required as part of the online review process.

While we wait on UTC Foundation's response ... you can help!

Thursday, May 14, 2009

New York Times Company Foundation Suspends Gift Program

The New York Times Company Foundation announced that it was suspending grant-making and the company’s matching gift program.

"The economy and the secular changes in our industry are causing everyone to rigorously manage costs, and unfortunately, this is a difficult but necessary step," said Michael Golden, vice chairman of the company and a board member of the foundation.
Read the rest of the article here.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Disney Minnie Grants

Youth Service America and Disney are pleased to offer the Disney Minnie Grants to fund children's efforts to improve their communities. These grants of $500 are for children (ages 5-14) or the organizations that engage them, to implement youth-led service projects that address the issues of Poverty, Hunger, Education, Environment, Global Citizenship, Sustainable Community Development, and Disaster Prevention & Relief.

Applications are accepted from all over the world. Projects will take place in the months of September-November 2009. Apply online thru June 15, 2009.

Questions? Email

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

National Science and Mathematics Access to Retain Talent (SMART) Grant

SMART Grants are available to Federal Pell Grant recipients who are U.S. citizens, in their third or fourth academic year, who are enrolled full time, majoring in physical, life or computer science, engineering, mathematics, technology, or a critical foreign language as determined by the Department of Education (likely to include Arabic, Japanese, Korean, Russian, Farsi, Urdu, and Chinese), who have a a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.00 in their major.

Award maximums are $4,000 for each of the third and fourth year of study. Annual award amounts may be reduced by the U.S. Department of Education if sufficient funds are not available for all eligible students in an award year.

This is a message that should be shared with any college student that you know!

Monday, May 11, 2009

Business Compute-N-Show: VOIP Telecommunications Technology (Video)

Rev. BW Burton, 5Linx Corp., is interviewed on the Business Compute-N-Show by host Nancy Ford in Memphis, TN. This show originally aired in August 2008.

Are you using VOIP technology at home or work?

Charities Reap Benefits of Contests on Internet

The opportunities for nonprofit groups to win money through contests are proliferating, adding yet another weapon to charities’ fund-raising arsenal.

The latest example started yesterday when visitors to the Target Corporation’s Facebook page began voting for one of 10 charities eligible to win a portion of $3 million the retailer will be giving away.

It’s a national trend, not only in the philanthropic sector but also among businesses, to look at how best to leverage social media,” said Laysha Ward, Target’s president of community relations. “Contests like this can help our nonprofit partners learn to use this new media to build not just financial resources but also awareness.”
Read the rest of the article here.

Gladys Marinelli Coccia Awards

Youth Service America is pleased to launch the first annual Gladys Marinelli Coccia Awards to recognize two young female social entrepreneurs, ages 14 to 17, whose initiatives serve the common good.

The awards of $2000 each are created in memory of Gladys Coccia, who began her entrepreneurial career when she was a young girl in West Virginia and later became a very successful businesswoman in Washington, DC.

Nominations from across the USA are welcome; special consideration will be given to nominees from West Virginia and metropolitan Washington, DC. Self-nominations are accepted. Nominations are accepted thru June 15. Take the eligibility quiz.

Questions? Email

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Rural Riddle: Do Jobs Follow Broadband Access?

Despite the support for publicly funded broadband networks -- and the push by private companies to jump into the fray -- some have questioned whether bringing high-speed Internet has a direct effect on jobs and the economy.

This Week in BDPA (May 10-16)

BDPA has 51 chapters around the nation. You can always find programs, services or networking activity here or here. BDPA supports your efforts for career advancement in the IT industry.

Are you taking advantage of these programs? Here is a weekly preview of upcoming events gathered from the centralized BDPA calendar :
We encourage all BDPA leaders to take advantage of the centralized BDPA CollectiveX Groupsite Calendar to post your upcoming events! Please let us know of other BDPA events that we may have missed. Most importantly, let us know if you plan to attend any BDPA events this week.

Finally, I hope you will consider making a tax-deductible online donation to the BDPA Foundation in honor of Marcellus Sims (HSCC Alumni 2006). Do it now!

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Helping Themselves

Nonprofit organizations -- facing cuts in government aid, investment losses and a decline in donations -- have been experimenting with new ways to stay afloat. Besides cutting costs and eliminating waste, they're thinking more creatively about how to use volunteers, garner new donations, strengthen ties with existing donors and create projects that generate additional income.

"Necessity is the mother of invention," says Melissa Berman, president of New York-based Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors. "As financial resources dry up, people have the impetus they need to be creative about where to get help and how to keep their mission going."
Read more on strategies being used by some charities...

Friday, May 8, 2009

Grant Proposal: State Street Foundation

BETF and BDPA New York chapter partnered on a grant proposal to State Street Foundation in support of the chapter's 2009 SITES program. We hope to have an answer from them in 45 days.

State Street Foundation makes effective and socially responsible contributions to charitable organizations that provide support to the less advantaged, primarily in communities where State Street offices are located. The Foundation works to generate and sustain positive change in our communities, while complementing the development of their worldwide business operations. In 2007, State Street made 370 grants totaling $18.2 million.

State Street supports good works done in Massachusetts, California (Alameda/San Francisco, Los Angeles, and Newport Beach), Atlanta, Kansas City MO, Princeton NJ, New York NY, and Winston-Salem NC.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Letter of Inquiry: Best Buy Store (New York)

BDPA New York chapter partnered with the BDPA Foundation to submit a letter of inquiry to Best Buy Store #599 (8923 Bay Parkway; Brooklyn NY) requesting product donations.

Each Best Buy store has a donation budget to support local nonprofit organizations. Product Donations come directly from the local Best Buy store.
  • Donations are given to schools, libraries and after-school clubs
  • Donations are made in the form of product or Best Buy Gift Cards
  • Local store employees decide how to support their community

We will keep you informed on the response to our letter of inquiry.

In the meantime, we are open to any other chapter interested in approaching their local Best Buy store for a product or gift card donation. If your chapter is interested then we need three things specific technology product(s) that you seek and the mailing address for Best Buy store that is local to your chapter.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Grant Award: Dell Foundation

BETF and BDPA Middle Tennessee chapter are proud to announce successful grant award of $5,000 from Dell Foundation. Company officials wrote:

Dear Mr. Hicks,

The Dell Foundation is pleased to inform you that the BDPA Education & Technology Foundation is a recipient of an Open Grant award in the amount of $5,000.00.

We are excited to partner with you on this worthwhile project and wish you continued success.

Warmest regards,
Teresa Miller

The Dell Foundation, the corporate giving division of Dell, is committed to contributing significantly to the quality of life in communities where Dell employees live and work. The Foundation supports innovative and effective programs that provide fundamental prerequisites to equip youth to learn and excel in a world driven by the digital economy.

Jonica Cowan and Tinita Haley are the two leaders in our Middle Tennessee chapter who worked closely with BETF on this successful grant proposal. Please share some BDPA-Love with Jonica and Tinita!

Scholarships Available for Blogging While Brown Conference

BDPAers are encouraged to apply for scholarships that would cover full registration for the 2nd annual Blogging While Brown Conference.

Those who do not currently blog are encouraged to apply as the scholarship also covers the cost of registration for the pre-conference boot camp. Pass it along to your network, activists, parents, entrepreneurs and anyone else that would benefit from mastering original digital content creation (Gina's new word).

This is a great opportunity. I hope to see many BDPA members in attendance!

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

2009 Design Scholarship Challenge

Aspiring graphic designers have until June 8 to submit entries to the 2009 Design Scholarship Challenge” to compete for the national prize, an opportunity to work with DC Comics on an upcoming marketing campaign for “Absolute Justice” and a $25,000 tuition scholarship to one of the sponsoring design schools. Hopefuls should submit entries to one of the schools which are: the 11 International Academy of Design & Technology (Academy) campuses, located in Chicago, Detroit, Las Vegas, Online Campus, Orlando, Sacramento, San Antonio, Schaumburg (IL), Seattle, Nashville, and Tampa; as well as Brooks Institute, Brown College, Collins College, and Harrington College of Design.

[Read More]

Grant Award: Computers for Learning

BETF and BDPA Richmond chapter partnered on a request for in-kind donation of computer hardware from the folks at the Computers for Learning (CFL). CFL is setting aside seven (7) computers (original cost: $34,816) for pick-up by BDPA Richmond chapter. The chapter plans to use them as part of their Student Information Technology Education & Scholarship (SITES) program.

Kudos to BDPA member Jackie Pryor for successfully working this in-kind donation. She refused to give up after being turned down by CFL with an earlier request.

The CFL program exists to transfer computers and related peripheral equipment excess to their needs directly to schools and some educational nonprofit organizations. The CFL program specifically matches the computer needs of schools and educational nonprofit organization with excess equipment in Federal agencies.

The CFL program's ambitious goal is to make modern computer technology an integral part of every classroom so that every child has the opportunity to be educated to his or her full potential.

I encourage all BDPA chapters to take a close look at this program. In the meantime, please join us in congratulating BDPA Richmond chapter!

Monday, May 4, 2009

Seeking Nominations for BDPA Epsilon Award

National BDPA seeks nominations for the 2009 Epsilon Awards. There are five Epsilon Award categories:
  1. Career Achievement - nominees are individuals, highly experienced professionals at or past their career mid-point, who have made significant career achievements.
  2. Community Service
  3. Most Promising Technologist
  4. Outstanding Technical Achievement
  5. Professional Achievement - nominees are individuals, near or at the career midpoint, who have made significant professional achievements.

The Selection Panel is looking for role models, people who can inspire both young people and professionals. We look for “first African American” stories. If a nominee is unique, a first, or one of a few African Americans in his or her field, the panel takes a hard look at the reasons that nominee broke the barrier. Here are some past Epsilon Award winners.

Nominations can be submitted by BDPA sponsors or BDPA Chapters. The awards will be presented at the Awards Gala on Saturday August 8, 2009 in Raleigh NC.

Do you know anyone in your company, chapter or industry that deserves to be recognized? Download 2-page Epsilon Award announcement!

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Grant Proposal: Office Depot Foundation

BETF and BDPA Middle Tennessee submitted and online grant application requesting $2,000 funding support from the Office Depot Foundation.

Grant applications are retrieved on a monthly basis and are reviewed by the Office Depot Foundation Contributions Committee and final decisions on proposals are made by the Foundation's Board of Directors. They indicate that we should allow at least eight weeks after we submit our completed application before we receive a response.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Obama wants USA to be World Leader in Science

President Barack Obama laid out a deck of initiatives in a speech at the National Academy of Sciences, where he vowed to implement what he described as the largest-ever US investment in scientific research and a dramatic reversal of ideology-driven policies of his predecessor George W. Bush.

The clarion call for the country to regain its position as the world leader in scientific research and innovation came as the Obama administration faced its first major global health crisis in the recent deadly outbreak of swine flu in Mexico and the United States that threatens to burst into a pandemic.

"At such a difficult moment, there are those who say we cannot afford to invest in science, that support for research is somehow a luxury at a moment defined by necessities," Obama told hundreds of scientists, researchers and educators. "I fundamentally disagree. Science is more essential for our prosperity, our security, our health, our environment, and our quality of life than it has ever been."
Read the rest of the article...

Friday, May 1, 2009

Top 10 Black Blogs (May 2009)

Happy Mother's Day! We now have 1,659 blogs ranked in May 2009 BBR. Two new blogs (The Field Negro and La Shawn Barber's Corner) enter into the Top 10 for the first time since Feb 2009. Hello Beautiful (BBR #12) and This is (BBR #16) dropped out of the Top 10.

Currently, we track 1,659 blogs ... up 30 from last month. We are proud of the evolution of the Black Blog Rankings (BBR). However, we recognize that not every Black-owned & operated blog is on our current list! Please let me know if you see a blog that should be added to the BBR.

The Top Ten Black Blogs for May 2009:
  1. Pam Spaulding: Pam's House Blend (Authority: 1,084 / Rank: 1,402) - [Politics] Pam's blog continues in the BBR #1 for the 11th month in a row. The Washington Post shared some reasons that Pam has been so influential in the blogosphere. I still hold out hope that Pam will be a guest on Rachel Maddow show at some point in the near future. Tags for this blog are race, politics, feminism, gay and lesbian. This blog was BBR #2 in May 2008.
  2. Ahsmi Rawlins: Nah Right (Authority: 721 / Rank: 2,771) - [Entertainment] Ashmi (a.k.a., ESKAY) has been blogging since May 2005 and is now recognized as the top-ranked gossip or entertainment blog on our list. This BBR #2 ranking is an all-time high for Nah Right. I still want to know the deal on his blog masthead. I was born and raised on St. Andrews Place in Los Angeles ... so it brings a smile to my face whenever I visit Nah Right. Can anyone tell me why he has St. Andrews Place on his blog masthead. The tags for this blog are news and music. This blog was BBR #4 in May 2008.
  3. The Bossip: (Authority: 714 / Rank: 2,819) - [Entertainment] This blog has spheres of influence in Atlanta, Los Angeles and New York City. Moguldom Media Group, which owns Bossip, is run by Marve Frazier and the founder who seeks to keep anonymity. This blog was BBR #1 in May 2008.
  4. Angel Laws: Concrete Loop (Authority: 548 / Rank: 4,160) - [Entertainment] Angel Laws is the 24-year old sister who who owns and operates popular entertainment blog. She will be a presenter at the 2009 Blogging While Brown Conference. Concrete Loop is also a popular destination on MySpace. Tags for this blog are Music, Pictures, gossip, R&B, Hollywood, Celebs, Exclusive, loop, concrete, gossip blog, concreteloop, black celebs, black gossip, celeb interviews and black hollywood. This blog was BBR #3 a year ago.
  5. Natasha Eubanks: Young, Black & Fabulous (Authority: 488 / Rank: 4,865) - [Entertainment] Natasha Eubanks moved up three spots in this month's BBR. This 27-year old nubian from Alexandria, VA provides some remarkable celebrity photos on her blog. She also has a popular site on MySpace. This blog was BBR #7 a year ago.
  6. Oliver Willis: Oliver Willis (Authority: 475 / Rank: 5,138) - [Politics] Oliver has been blogging since April 2005. You can tell an awful lot about a blogger from the company he keeps. Oliver's blogging enemies go for his juggular. On the other hand, he is a contributor to the top-ranked blog in the world. Tags for this blog are politics, media, news, comedy, humor, progressive, journalism, democrats and movies. This blog was BBR #6 in May 2008.
  7. Baratunde Thurston and Cheryl Contee: Jack and Jill Politics (Authority: 451 / Rank: 5,551) - [Politics] Baratunde and Cheryl make up the dynamic online team of Jack and Jill. Their blog provides a Black bourgeoisie perspective on U.S. politics. The duo provides outstanding political content. You can find them on Facebook as well. This blog was BBR #8 last year.
  8. Marenda Taylor: Living Life Abundantly (Authority: 366 / Rank: 7,451) - [Social Commentary] Marenda wrote, "I started this blog with the intentions of expressing my thoughts, provoking thought, bridging gaps, and sparking conversation. The agenda is to entertain, educate, and empower. The goal is to inspire, encourage, and uplift. The mission is to Live Life Abundantly and to share the lifestyle with as many people as possible." Marenda posts more often than just about anyone else on this list. I have no idea how she finds the time, however, all of her blog readers appreciate the power of her information. This blog was BBR #135 in May 2008.
  9. Wayne Bennett: The Field Negro (Authority: 341 / Rank: 8,181) - [Social Commentary] Wayne is both my namesake and my favorite blogger. It is worth noting that he does it his way. I don't think that this blogger is on any of the other social networks like Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn Network. His blog is the only one in the BBR Top 10 using the 'freebie' platform. It goes to show that if your content is tight ... you will attract attention. Tags for this blog are house negro, Politcs, Race, Racism, negroes, Economics, Law, Urban, Jamaica, Pan Africanism, Malcolm X, Crime, Sports, killadelphia and third world. This blog was BBR #13 a year ago.
  10. La Shawn Barber: La Shawn Barber's Corner (Authority: 326 / Rank: 8,848) - [Social Commentary] La Shawn began blogging in November 2003 ... making her one of the most experienced bloggers on our list. She is a freelance writer and columnist with a Christian and conservative viewpoint. She recently shared her thoughts on Black beauty pageants. You can also find her on Facebook. Tags for this blog are News, Music, Media, Writer, conservative, Black, God, Digital, blogger, Journalism, Women, Jesus Christ, Bible, Harry Potter, iTunes, Christian, Pro-life and Reformed. This blog was BBR #9 in May 2008.

HONORABLE MENTION (11-25): Womanist Musings, Hello Beautiful, Ill Doctrine, The Smoking Section, Necole Bitchie, This is, AfroBella, The Black Snob, The Angry Black Woman, Rod 2.0:Beta, Raw Dawg Buffalo, Sandra Rose, Angry Black Bitch, and What About Our Daughters.

This ranking is open to any blogger of African descent who owns/operates a blog. Black Blog Rankings lean heavily on the Technorati Authority and Rank score for each blog. The Technorati authority and rank numbers are shown in parenthesis. The authority figure includes a number of factors including the number of blogs that are linked to this blogger over the past six months. The rank number indicates how many blogs are between the one listed and The Huffington Post, which is the #1 overall blog in the universe.

We are adding links to the Word version of the Villager's Black Blog Rankings. Let me know if you want a copy of the Word version. In the meantime, I encourage you to share some link-love with this post so that your blog readers know about us!

Top 10 BDPA Chapters (May 2009, Membership)

There are 51 BDPA chapters in the nation. Each chapter averages 55 members (up 1 from last month).

Congratulations to BDPA Philadelphia chapter (president, Monique Berry) for setting a new chapter record for membership this month ... breaking their previous high of 193 (Mar 2009) breaking their chapter an all-time record high in chapter membership this past month.

It is also worth noting that BDPA Triangle chapter (president, Rick Leggett) jumped from 14th place (Mar 2009) to 4th place (Apr 2009). The chapter also broke their previous high membership total of 118 (Jun 2008). It appears that this chapter is taking advantage of being host of 2009 national conference.

The top ten chapters in terms of membership as of 5/1/2009 are:
  1. Chicago
  2. Philadelphia - (all-time chapter record high, 196 members)
  3. Richmond
  4. Triangle - (jumped 10 places this month; all-time chapter record high, 147 members)
  5. Atlanta - (dropped 1 place this month)
  6. Washington DC - (dropped 1 place this month)
  7. New York - (dropped 1 place this month)
  8. Cincinnati - (dropped 1 place this month)
  9. New Jersey
  10. Detroit - (dropped 2 places this month)
Seven of these chapters are in the BDPA Century Club with at least 100 members. These large chapters are located in various regions of the country - 3 in the Midwest, 4 in the Northeast and 3 in the Southeast.
BDPA Education & Technology Foundation provides funding to support these programs and services at local level. Our hope is that you will consider making a donation to BETF this year. You can securely donate online or you can give BETF a call on (513) 284-4968 to discuss your pledge offline.
What say u?