Saturday, October 31, 2009

Take Action for Net Neutrality

I was pleased to receive invitation to join a conference call today with Rep. Ed Markey (D-MA) regarding his Internet Freedom Preservation Act (H.R. 3458) bill. The Internet Freedom Preservation Act would protect Network Neutrality under the Communications Act, safeguard the future of the open Internet, and protect Internet users from discrimination online.

Rep. Markey is best known for his work in Congress on the global warming issue. However, he made it evident during the conference call that he feels the time for net neutrality legislation is now.

Rep. Markey is one of seven congressional leaders to co-sponsor HR 3458. He asked that bloggers and other online activists encourage other members of congress to co-sign this legislation. You can find online petition that allows you to write your congressional representative in the 'Take Action for Net Neutrality' section of this website.

Rep. Markey also suggested that BDPA members participate in the debate currently taking place within the Federal Communications Commission (FCC).

The conference call helped me to better understand the importance of supporting Net Neutrality. I appreciate Rep. Markey, Garlin Gilchrist II (The SuperSpade) and Timothy Karr (Free Press) for providing this open forum of discussion by Black bloggers!

What are your thoughts on the Net Neutrality movement?

Friday, October 30, 2009

AmeriCorps State and National Grants (Deadline: January 26)

Subject to the availability of appropriations for fiscal year 2010, the federal government announces the anticipated availability of approximately $363 million to award new, re-competing, and continuation AmeriCorps State and National grants.

The grant categories are: State Commission and National Competitive including Professional Corps and Fixed-Amount Grants; State and National EAP; States and Territories without Commissions; and Indian Tribes. In the FY 2010 competition, the Corporation's funding priorities are projects that address compelling, unmet needs in one or a combination of the following five national service priority areas which are described more fully in the Notice of Funding Opportunity.

  1. Education
  2. Clean Energy/Environment
  3. Healthy Futures
  4. Veterans
  5. Opportunity

The total funding available for these grants will be set by Congress through the appropriations process now underway. If the President's fiscal year 2010 budget request is fully funded, the agency anticipates approximately $363 million to be available for new, recompeting, and continuation grants in all of the AmeriCorps State and National grant categories.

Applications to the Corporation are due January 26, 2010, at 5:00 p.m. Eastern Time, and successful applicants will be notified in early June 2010.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

HSCC Testimonial: Syed Azfar (Boston Metrowest)

One of the powerful aspects of the BDPA experience is the work we do with young people. We seek to introduce young people to technology at a young age so that they have an option of creating a future for themselves in the information technology (IT) industry.

Here is the story of a young man, Syed Azfar, who participated in the student IT education & scholarship (SITES) program hosted by BDPA Boston Metrowest chapter back in 2004:

Before I joined BDPA in 2004, I did not know anything about developing websites. All I did on the computer was play games and instant message with friends. It all changed when I joined the BDPA Boston Metrowest chapter. Every Saturday from 9:00 am to 3:00 pm, we met in Cambridge, MA and started going over HTML. It did not take me long to develop an interest in creating websites. As soon as the first session was over, I went home and started writing codes from the HTML book that I received from the program. The examples given in the book allowed me to understand the basics, which helped me to merge it into a website. During the next few months, we learned how to create databases and connect website to it in order to view and save information.

After months of training, it was time to put it to the test. We flew down to Dallas, Texas for three days to participate in the
high school computer competition. The competition took place in two parts.

The first part was the oral, where we answered questions on the history of the information technology (IT) industry and the organization.

The second part involved developing a website for a video company. The website would need to access a database of movies and based on the query would need to provide the results. We only had 8 hours to complete this task. Looking around the massive room, it was evident that the next couple of hours would test our knowledge and our focus. After we were done with the competition, we were encouraged to attend the seminars given by IT professionals on different topics ranging from the new structures of developing websites to emerging technologies to the future growth of the IT field.

Attending that BDPA conference was one of the most rewarding experiences I have ever had and to this day I am still part of BDPA and I encourage young students to join this great organization. I am very fortunate to have learned about this organization and to be part of it.

Syed Azfar is currently a student at the University of Massachusetts (Amherst) majoring in Electrical/Computer Engineering. He is a web development fanatic who loves using new technologies to enhance his web skills. He created his own company to develop websites for his clients.

If you enjoyed this testimonial ... please take a moment to do one of two things. Either use the COMMENTS option below and share your thoughts with us *or* support our efforts to train more young people like Syed by making a secure online donation to the BDPA Foundation!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Black Web 2.0 Goes Inside Windows 7 with Cordell Jones (Video)

I met Markus Robinson, co-founder of Black Web 2.0, during the Blogging While Brown conference a couple of years ago. As such, I was very interested when he conducted an interview with Windows 7 Program Manager Cordell Jones.

I encourage all BDPA members to view this entire interview:

It is great to see young brothers making an impact on a major IT initiative such as Windows 7. The sad thing was that these brothers are talking about an Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) event from college instead of a BDPA experience. Hopefully, BDPA can begin to make stronger inroads with our college programs in the future.

Anyhow, what did you learn or enjoy from this video?

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

African Americans: Prepared to Lead at the Senior Levels in Information Technology

The Information Technology Senior Management Forum (ITSMF) is proud to announce that 18 IT African American professionals are ready to leap into leadership after completing the ITSMF Executive Protégé Program.

The goal of the Executive Protégé Program is to fill the pipeline with African Americans ready to advance to the senior levels of information technology. Graduates of the program also help fill an ongoing and growing void in the IT industry.

Published survey results indicate the IT industry is facing a talent crunch and many CIOs feel finding skilled professionals is their greatest challenge. "As a result of this data it is not a far leap to conclude that if we do not have the talent at the professional or mid-management levels, we may not have enough people in the pipeline to reach the executive levels," say Zack Lamelle, ITSMF Chairperson.

ITSMF has mobilized its efforts around solving this issue. The ITSMF Executive Protégé Program provides the mentoring and leadership development mid-level African American managers in information technology need, to advance to the senior and C level in IT. It is the only national leadership development program focused on cultivating executive talent among African American IT professionals.

The leadership development and mentoring occur in a structured collaborative environment where seasoned veterans share their success secrets and help protégés strategize for upward mobility. Using one-on-one coaching, enrollees gain insight and a higher sense of awareness of the behavioral and relationship abilities needed to become a leader in the IT profession.

Participants in the program learn from experienced senior leaders from some of the world's top fortune 500 companies like Lockheed Martin, Wachovia Bank, Marriott International and Microsoft. "We offer guidance, advice and counsel based upon real world experience," says Allen Sample, senior vice president for Marriott International.

To qualify for the program, mid-level managers must possess excellent communication skills, have achieved the level of first line manager, commit to completing the 12-month program and obtain a recommendation from an ITSMF member, an ITSMF Corporate Partner, or a protégé channel organization. They must also gain sponsorship and support from a senior level company manager for the duration of the program and be recognized as a high potential employee, promotable to at least two levels above their current position.

This year's graduating protégés are:
  1. Gloria Anderson; Hewlett Packard, Technical Program Manager

  2. Irvin Bishop; Coca Cola Company, Director Global Interactive Marketing, IT

  3. Rhonda Boyd; Allstate, Portfolio Management Advisor, Technology Mgmt. Office

  4. Jason Carter, Bank of America, former Vice President and Senior Technology Manager

  5. Danielle Desalu; Cisco, Wireless Systems Engineer

  6. Christopher Essex; UBS, Director, IT

  7. Lucia Eversley; Procter & Gamble, Business Performance Solutions Leader

  8. Dwight Forbes; Hewlett Packard, Civilian Agencies Presales Manager

  9. Damon Frost; Procter & Gamble, Section Manager, GBS Leader

  10. Shirley Johansson; Procter & Gamble, Systems Manager

  11. Nikkia Miller-Blakes; Johnson & Johnson (Ethicon), Global Application Development Manager

  12. Mike Nation; Coca Cola Company, Program Manager, Global Financial Development

  13. Sharon Ransom; IBM, Americas Director of Services, Support and Education, Tivoli Software

  14. Kimberly Summers-Sims; Hanesbrands, Director, Project Management

  15. Tammara Turner; Microsoft, Social Engineer

  16. Bennette Veals; Procter & Gamble, Employee Services Client Manager

  17. Olden Warren; Procter & Gamble, Senior Project Manager

  18. Ronnie Watson; Johnson & Johnson, IT Franchise Director

I encourage these 18 brothers and sisters to find a way to reach back and support BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) as they rise up the career ladder.

Monday, October 26, 2009

2010 Google Anita Borg Memorial Scholarship

Dr. Anita Borg (1949-2003) devoted her life to revolutionizing the way we think about technology and dismantling the barriers that keep women and minorities from entering the computing and technology fields.

In honor of Anita's vision, Google announced the 2010 Google Anita Borg Memorial Scholarship, awarding a group of female students each a scholarship for the 2010-2011 academic year. All finalists and scholarship recipients will also be invited to attend a 3-day Scholars' Retreat at the Googleplex in 2010.

The Google Anita Borg Scholarship program is available to students studying computer science in Africa, Australia, Canada, Europe, the Middle East, New Zealand and the United States.

Candidates must:
  • Submit application by deadline of February 1, 2010
  • Be a female student entering her senior year of undergraduate study or enrolled in a graduate program in the 2010-2011 academic year at a university
  • Be enrolled in Computer Science or Computer Engineering program, or a closely related technical field as a full-time student for the 2009-2010 academic year
  • Maintain a cumulative GPA of at least 3.5 on a 4.0 scale or 4.5 on a 5.0 scale or equivalent in your current program

This is a remarkable scholarship opportunity that should be shared with all of our High School Computer Competition (HSCC) alumni. Do you know any young women that are seniors in college or doing post-graduate work?

Saturday, October 24, 2009

The Art of Social Networking (Cincinnati)

BDPA Cincinnati chapter president Janice Lee invited me to be the guest presenter for the October 2009 program meeting on 10/22/2009. We talked about The Art of Social Networking.

The interaction with the audience was excellent. We covered the basics of networking, benefits of networking, demographics of Internet users, creating a blog, LinkedIn Network, Facebook, Twitter and traits of a good or bad networker.

I promised the folks in the audience that I would make the slideshow of my presentation available to them. Here it is:

I forgot how much I enjoy being surrounded by BDPA members that want to learn new things and network with one another. It is difficult to underestimate the power of BDPA program meetings. What is your best memory of a BDPA program meeting in your life?

Give By The Click

By Betsy Brill

In an age of packed schedules and dwindling funds, we may not feel we have the time or money to devote to charitable giving. Fortunately for the thousands of nonprofit organizations struggling to provide critical services to our communities in this challenging economy a new wave of young and innovative social entrepreneurs has created inventive Web applications to accomplish the seemingly impossible: to spur charitable giving during a recession and to allow us to give without even opening our wallets.

These Web applications are experiments in social enterprise -- turning profits while creating forums for social change. Unlike the much-publicized charitable giving applications created by Facebook (Causes) and Twitter (TwitCause), these enterprises allow us to give while saving time -- and even money--as we multi-task our way through our daily lives. They also have the potential to supply a sustainable and reliable funding source -- however nominal -- for nonprofits for which every penny truly counts.

Read the rest of the Forbes article.

Friday, October 23, 2009

National Directory of STEM Learning Opportunities Now Available

Are you looking for an opportunity to promote and expand an after-school science or technology program ... such as the Student IT Education & Scholarship program?

The Coalition for Science After School, has teamed up with Time Warner Cable to create a national directory of science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) learning opportunities. This resource is designed to help parents and young people access science and technology learning opportunities in their communities and will be widely marketed to increase the visibility of STEM after school and informal learning opportunities.

BETF-blog readers are encouraged to visit the website to learn more about it and spend a few moments entering information on your organization and its programs and events (where applicable). There is no cost to join or access the national directory.

Questions about the Directory, the Coalition, or informal STEM education should be directed to

Early Bird Registration for 2010 National BDPA Technology Conference

BETF Executive Director made motion at the 3Q-2009 National BDPA Board of Directors meeting to allow early bird registration rate of $200 for the 2010 BDPA Technology Conference to be held in Philadelphia, PA. The motion passed.

Next step is yours. Click here for early-bird registration! The deadline for this early-bird rate ends on 10/31/2009. Don't procrastinate!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Message from Orlando Chapter President

Hello, this month we had a great program on Information Security. Things that you can do to protect yourself as well as your small business. A copy of the presentation as well as some additional resources are included in this newsletter. The Dept of Homeland Security considers October, National Cyber Security Awareness Month.

The next BDPA program meeting scheduled for Tuesday November 10th is going to be on Windows 7. We are working on having Microsoft do the presentation. We are also going to be providing workshops and assisting folks with upgrading their existing computers to Windows 7. This will be done at the Smith Center.

We are beginning to work on programming for 2010 and we need your input. Please send us an e-mail or give us a call and let us know what topics, workshops, forums you would like to see. We want to be your go-to resource and add value. The BDPA Orlando website is being overhauled and the new one will be unveiled next month.

The 2010 early bird conference registration ends on October 31st. Please register to take adavantage of the $200 special. The conference is going to be in Philadelphia, PA next year.

Please renew your membership today! Membership is the lifeblood of this organization. We need both your input and support. If you are not a member register with BDPA today.

As always, this is your newsletter so if there is something that you would like to share like an article or know of any job opportunities for BDPA Orlando members please forward them to:

Thank you,
Pablo More, President
BDPA Orlando
Phone: (617) 283-2051

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Hassan Moustafa Uses Bemley Scholarship for Bio-Engineering Degree at University of Maryland

Hassan Moustafa was a member of the silver-medal winning high school computer competition (HSCC) team trained by BDPA Washington DC at the 2008 National BDPA Conference held in Atlanta GA.

BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) awarded a Bemley Scholarship to Hassan and his teammates for their outstanding performance in the national HSCC championships. We thought you would be interested in hearing directly from Hassan on his experience:

Hello my name is Hassan Moustafa. I graduated from high school in 2008 from Charles Herbert Flowers High School. I am currently attending the University of Maryland College Park, studying bioengineering. During the fall semester of 2008, I attend Prince George’s Community College as I waited to be admitted into the University of Maryland College Park for the spring semester of 2009. Even though I am currently majoring in bioengineering, I have learned a lot through the BDPA and HSCC programs about the information technology industry. I plan on integrating all I have learned about programming and expanding my knowledge base in order to explore a useful application for it within my discipline as I am gaining laboratory experience.

Furthermore, I have only participated in the HSCC program for only one year, as I was a high school senior year at the time. I regret finding about the HSCC program during my senior year, because that made it the first and final year I could be a part of the program. I learned so much from my mentors about programming in general, but I learned more so about teamwork and effort working with my teammates as well. My most memorable HSCC moments would have to be those days before the competition, where the whole team would prepare diligently for all three parts of the competition. We worked on different strategies and experimented with all of them for hours each day. I truly miss those indelible moments. In summation, the HSCC has impacted me in becoming more open to learning something so new and at times abstract by introducing me to different programming languages that I had no prior exposure to. It was very interesting to see its application in our real-world applications and I plan on continuing to learn more programming even as a bioengineer.

We need your help. BETF provided over $233,000 in scholarships since 1996 ... however, our ability to continue providing these Bemley Scholarships next year is jeapordized without donor support. Please consider making a secure online donation now so that we can help more HSCC students attend college!

Obama Administration Launches $650M Program to Boost Education

By Nick Anderson

The Obama administration announced goals for a $650 million grant competition for school systems and nonprofit organizations with ideas for narrowing achievement gaps, reducing high school dropout rates and improving teacher and principal effectiveness.

The competition dovetails with a $4.35 billion grant program for states that the administration calls "Race to the Top." The combined $5 billion in seed money for fixing or improving schools amounts to one of the largest federal investments to date in educational entrepreneurship.

Read full text of this Washington Post article.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Andrea Taylor Claims Microsoft Success Driven by 'Constant Learning'

I am hoping that BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) can create a strategic alliance with Microsoft. In order to do so we will need to receive the blessing of Andrea Taylor, Director of Community Affairs at Microsoft. Her team manages the Giving Campaign and Employee Engagement. She develops strategy and oversees implementation of Microsoft's Unlimited Potential Community Technology Skills program, a global initiative that promotes digital inclusion and increased access to training in underserved communities.

In the following video we see Ms. Taylor talking with Tom Becker, President of the Chautauqua Institution, about the importance of philanthropy. She discusses her past experiences in the field, and explores the changing nature of philanthropy in light of the recent economic crisis.

Taylor works closely with nonprofit organizations, governments and businesses while making company investments that support economic development by advancing employability and workforce development.

Taylor says that Microsoft seeks to "provide people with a way of thinking...that allows them to be open and receptive to constant learning." That seems to fit our effots with the Student Information Technology Education & Scholarship (SITES) program. Any ideas on how BETF and Microsoft can hook up in the coming weeks?

Monday, October 19, 2009

BDPA Groupsite Milestone: 2,000 Members

I created the BDPA Groupsite (formerly known as CollectiveX) on December 24, 2007. It was part of my effort to leverage Web 2.0 tools in support of the fundraising efforts of BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF). It helped that Groupsite is a Black-owned and operated business!

Anyhow, it has been very rewarding to see the continued growth and evolution of the BDPA Groupsite. We hit a significant milestone over the weekend when BDPA Detroit chapter member Damon Bryant became the 2,000th member to join the BDPA Groupsite. The benefits of being part of this network are obvious:
We live in a new world in which it is important for us to connect with each other via cyberspace. BDPA Groupsite supports this effort. Our hope is that all BDPA members and supporters will add this social networking tool into your arsenal.

We also hope you will consider making an online donation to our nonprofit foundation! Your donation is used to support continued use of Web 2.0 tools in the future as well as provide scholarships for our students around the nation.

Cincinnati: Bio-Science City

by Val Prevish

When it comes to health care research, Cincinnati is in the top tier of cities nationally because of renowned institutions such as Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center (CCHMC) and the University of Cincinnati (UC). It is no surprise, then, that our city is also home to some up and coming health care products companies who find plenty to like about being in Cincinnati.

Carol Frankenstein, president of BIOSTART, a life sciences start up organization based in Corryville funded through a public and private collaborative, says that the strength of Cincinnati's talent pool in health care research and education has been a big boost for the local medical products industry.

With more than $300 million in research grants each year between both UC and CCHMC, the area is known as a brain trust of new ideas and breakthroughs, she says.

Read the rest of the Soapbox Cincinnati article here.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

From Root to STEM: Spelman Women and Their Journeys Through the Sciences

Soulclap to Monie on the Outside for pointing me to a documentary made by Spelman College students, Cyndee Bayless (Class of 2010)and Deven Sanders (class of 2009). The film is called From Root to STEM: Spelman Women and Their Journeys Through the Sciences. It's a film that was made to inspire as well as give young Black women practical information about achieving academic success in the sciences.

The documentary examines the lives of recent Spelman graduates who are now pursuing successful careers in science. The film focuses on the lifestyle choices these women have made to achieve their desired career path.

I wonder if any of these young sisters are members of BDPA?

Saturday, October 17, 2009

State Farm Good Neighbor Grants (Deadline: November 9)

Youth Service America is currently accepting applications for State Farm® Good Neighbor Service-Learning Grants to support service-learning projects that culminate on Global Youth Service Day (GYSD), April 23-25, 2010.

School and community educators across the United States and Canada (select provinces) can apply for up to $1,000 in funding for youth-led projects. Service-learning is a teaching and learning strategy integrating meaningful community service with academic study and reflective practice to enrich learning, build civic engagement, and strengthen communities.

State Farm Good Neighbor Service-Learning grant applicants are encouraged to develop projects that launch on Martin Luther King Day of Service, January 18, 2010, and culminate on the weekend of GYSD, April 23-25, 2010.

Friday, October 16, 2009

NCWIT Award for Aspirations in Computing

Applications are open now through November 15, 2009 for the 2010 NCWIT Award for Aspirations in Computing!

The NCWIT Award for Aspirations in Computing recognizes young women at the high-school level for their computing-related achievements and interests. By generating visibility for these young women in their local communities, the NCWIT Award for Aspirations in Computing encourages their continued interest in computing, attracts the attention and support of educational and corporate institutions, and emphasizes at a personal level the importance of women's participation.

I encourage all female high school students in the BDPA family to apply now for the 2010 NCWIT Award for Aspirations in Computing. All US high school young women (grades 9-12) are invited to apply.

The application is completed online and includes essay-style questions. Download the preparing your application checklist for all the information you will need to complete the application process. Applicants will have until November 15, 2009 to complete their applications.

Awardees are selected for their demonstrated, outstanding aptitude and interest in information technology/computing; solid leadership ability; good academic history; and plans for post-secondary education.

Each qualified national awardee will receive:
  1. $500 in cash

  2. laptop computer, provided by Bank of America

  3. a trip to attend the Bank of America Technology Showcase and Awards Ceremony, March 27, 2010, held in Charlotte, North Carolina

  4. an engraved award for both the student and the student's school

Through a generous grant from the Motorola Foundation, there will be additional Affiliate Award programs in Texas, Illinois & Florida. The application period is the same and students who apply from these states will be entered into both the local and national competitions. Affiliate award prize packages will vary by location.

Please contact Ruthe Farmer by phone (303.735-5578) or email if you have questions or wish to discuss further.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

How Nonprofits are Using Web-based Technologies to Reach Their Goals

by Josh Nelson

A new Hatcher Group report reveals how nonprofits are using new media technologies to advance social change. Based on interviews and a 70-question online survey of 30 nonprofits working on state-level advocacy issues, "New Media & Social Change: How Nonprofits are Using Web-based Technologies to Reach Their Goals" shows what new media tools are being used and how, what's working -- and what's not. The report offers advice and resources to help nonprofits use these increasingly important technologies to successfully promote their agendas.

It's must reading for organizations looking to make a difference, and their funders.

You can click here to view the full report, click here to download it as a PDF file, or send an email for a physical copy.

Read the rest of the article here.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Barnes & Noble Corporate Contributions Program

We seek to share funding sources for the consideration of local BDPA chapters or other nonprofit organizations. BETF is willing to partner with any interested BDPA chapter or other IT-based nonprofit as per our documented funding process.

Here is information about the Barnes and Noble corporate contributions program.

Eligibility: Donations criteria we consider include those that:

  • Reach a wider audience
  • Serve the greater good both nationally and locally
  • Offer opportunities for in-store events
  • Are able to work with Barnes & Noble and other appropriate sponsors on promotion and execution of the program
  • Are fully detailed and submitted in writing on your organization's letterhead

Barnes & Noble is also committed to literary-based sponsorships and partners with organizations that focus their core businesses on higher learning, literacy and the arts. These partnerships will foster not only community good will, but also promote our brand. Sponsors can be both for-profit and non-profit organizations. A suitable sponsorship is one that benefits Barnes & Noble and the communities it serves. Funding is limited.

Purpose: Barnes & Noble's corporate contributions program supports non-profit organizations that focus on literacy, the arts or education (K - 12).

More Information: For corporate sponsorships and donations, submit your proposal to:

Barnes & Noble will only accept requests for corporate sponsorships and donations either via e-mail at or in writing to:
Corporate Communications
Barnes & Noble
122 Fifth Avenue
New York, NY 10011
For local and regional donations and sponsorships, submit your proposal to the community relations manager or store manager at your local Barnes & Noble store. Stores can be located using the store finder.

The proposal will be reviewed to see if it meets the above criteria. A limited number of proposals will be forwarded to the district manager and regional community relations manager for approval. Please allow 60 days for a decision.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

American Honda Foundation

The American Honda Foundation, a non-profit philanthropic organization, was established in 1984 in conjunction with American Honda's 25th anniversary in the United States. The Foundation was started to say thank you to the American people for their support through the years. The American Honda Foundation was founded to make grants to worthy national non-profit causes, programs and organizations that directly benefit the people of the United States. Since its inception, the American Honda Foundation has provided more than 401 grants for more than $18.1 million.

The American Honda Foundation reflects the basic tenets, beliefs and philosophies of the Honda companies, which are characterized by the following:

Dreamful (imaginative), Creative, Youthful, Foresightful (forward-thinking), Scientific, Humanistic, Innovative

The American Honda Foundation provides grants in the fields of youth education and scientific education to the following: Educational institutions, K-12; accredited higher education institutions (colleges and universities); community colleges and vocational or trade schools; scholarship and fellowship programs at selected colleges and/or universities or through selected non-profit organizations; other scientific and education-related, non-profit, tax-exempt organizations; gifted student programs; media concerning youth education or scientific education; private, non-profit scientific or youth education projects; other non-profit, tax-exempt, institutions in the fields of youth education and scientific education; and programs pertaining to academic or curriculum development that emphasize innovative educational methods and techniques.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Pilgrim Software Receives BDPA Outstanding Achievement Award for Success & Support

Tampa-based Pilgrim Software announced it has received the Outstanding Achievement Award from the BDPA Greater Tampa Bay Chapter. The award was presented to acknowledge Pilgrim’s success as a world-leading provider of enterprise-wide compliance and quality management software solutions, and for its support for diversity in technology in the Florida region.

Pilgrim has supported this organization through its memberships and donations at critical times, when we reached out to them,” said Frank Shines, BDPA Gr Tampa Bay chapter president. “Pilgrim employees have assisted the Tampa Bay chapter, helping us to train 15 at-risk teens this year and send three of them to the BDPA National High School Computer Competition in North Carolina earlier this month.”
Accepting the Outstanding Achievement award on behalf of Pilgrim was Nikki Willett, Vice President of Marketing and Regulatory Affairs.

As a leader, Pilgrim is committed to education and giving back to the community – to our customers, to the industries we serve, and to our local community,” Willett said. “We’re proud of the work that Pilgrim employees are doing in mentoring our youth. Likewise, Pilgrim recognizes and appreciates the job the BDPA is doing in discovering the untapped potential in our young – which will be the key to technology and business success for our future – and for the outstanding performance and dedication of these kids.”
The award ceremony was held last month in conjunction with BDPA’s At-Risk Youth Charity Breakfast, presented to inspire and recognize local Greater Tampa Bay area teens for their achievements in business, technology, and health and fitness. In addition to the awards, the program included presentations by BDPA Greater Tampa Bay chapter president Shines and Ryan Nece, former Tampa Bay Buccaneer and founder of the Ryan Nece Foundation.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

The Art of Social Networking (Cincinnati)

BDPA Cincinnati is the 8th largest chapter in the nation. I am convinced that the chapter can double their membership with a better understanding of social networking. Frankly, I think that unemployed or under-employed BDPA members can improve their chances of finding meaningful employment if they create a plan to use social networking as part of their job search. I also think that small business owners can find and retain customers by adding a social networking strategy to the mix.

These are the real-world issues that we will tackle during my presentation on 'The Art of Social Networking' later this month.

Here are the logistics for the meeting:
  • Date - Thursday, October 22, 2009
  • Time - 6:00pm thru 8:00pm
  • Location - Offices of 5/3rd Bank - 5001 Kingsley Drive - Madisonville Office Bldg
You can RSVP online with BDPA Cincinnati chapter.

I would love to have some insights from BETF-Blog readers. What information would be the most useful for you at a workshop like this one? What would you like to learn or talk about at such a session? Use the COMMENTS link below to post your comment and share your thoughts!

Green Grants for Public School Teachers

With $150,000 in new grant funding designated for projects that integrate green-related topics and experiences into the classroom, the National Education Association (NEA) Foundation is growing its Learning and Leadership and Student Achievement grants program for individuals and teams of educators.

Public school teachers are eligible to apply for individual grants worth up to $5,000 for development and implementation of ideas, techniques, and approaches for teaching green concepts.

The first application deadline is October 15, and the first grants are slated to be awarded in January 2010. The NEA Foundation will award two more rounds of green grants in 2010, with deadlines for applications falling on February 1 and June 1. For more information, visit the NEA Foundation website.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Foundation Center Launches National Education Stimulus Initiative

The Foundation Center recently announced the launch of 'Foundations for Education Excellence', a national initiative it is supporting to engage philanthropic institutions and education leaders across the country in a unified, strategic drive to improve public education.

The cornerstone of this initiative is a new online resource center that will help education funders align their grantmaking — and maximize their overall impact — with funds available through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA).

Read full PNN Online article.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Message from Philadelphia Chapter President

BDPA Philadelphia is the 3rd largest chapter in the nation. More relevant is the fact that this chapter is 3-time defending 'BDPA Chapter of the Year'. Everything rises and falls on leadership ... and this chapter is led by Monique Berry. Here is Monique's message this month:

Dear Colleagues,

If you remember the old A-Team TV series from years ago, one of the recurring and memorable lines was "I love it when a plan comes together!". That would be my feeling about how this year of change is shaping up.

Last month Janice Coleman, SPHR, delivered an interactive and informative presentation during our September program meeting. I am sure we all left with new ideas and a clearer path regarding what we need to do going forward as IT professionals.

We held the Chapter's first golf outing this past Monday (thanks again, Bernard English and Willie Williams!). The weather was beautiful, the group had a great time and we raised funds for scholarships! We plan to do it again next year.

We are asking all members to attend the Recruiter's Round Table on October 21st. This is your chance to learn about Philadelphia area employment trends from top corporate recruiters. Put this on your calendar as an event not to miss!! A big thank you goes to Eileen Gadsden and her committee for all of the hard work they have put into this event.

We also feel it's important to get connected with other similar organizations in Philadelphia. I would like to send a special thank you to Steven McKessey for taking time out of his busy schedule to attend our September meeting. Steven is the President of NSBE Alumni Extension Greater Philadelphia Chapter. NSBE is an important ally in our quest to reach other IT professionals and we plan to cosponsor events in 2010.

Join us at one of our events this month and see for yourself how the plan is coming together.

Warm regards,
Monique Berry, President
BDPA Philadelphia Chapter

Monique becomes national BDPA president-elect in January. I can't wait for her focused mission-centric leadership style to be in full effect for all 45 chapters next year! How about you?

HSCC Testimonial: Pentao 'Mac' Teng (Greater Tampa Bay)

BDPA leaders often talk about our efforts to advance the careers of our members from 'the classroom to the boardroom'. I am pleased that BETF is able to collect and share insights from some of the remarkable HSCC alumni around the country ... including Pengtao ‘Mac’ Teng who began training with BDPA Greater Tampa Bay chapter while he was still in middle school.

Mac was a member of the national team representing Tampa FL in 2002-2003, 2005 and 2007. The 2003 and 2005 teams both finished in 4th place at the national competition.

We asked Mac to share his thoughts on the HSCC experience. Here is what he wrote:

I can say for a fact that BDPA changed my life. Prior to my experience with the Tampa Bay chapter, I was an ordinary middle school student who was complacent with what I was learning in class. I did not know anything about computers, much less how to make a web page, and my parents were not in the IT industry. My BDPA instructors taught me things I never would have learned in school, and their immense professionalism made a huge impact on my personal development. My BDPA training taught me to think like an engineer, and for a young kid, being able to see your ideas materialize in a web page was mind-blowing.

Going to the national competitions, at the time, was a cool and fun experience. Now that I am in college, I have come to realize how extraordinary it was that I, as a rising high-school student, was able to meet leaders of industry at a professional conference My experience with the high school computer competition is an opportunity that many of my peers would fight tooth and nail for today. Attending the various national BDPA conferences and competing in the national competitions allowed me to see that nothing is impossible through hard work and a little bit of luck.

BDPA has not only developed my academic interests -- I am studying engineering at Penn -- but also made me realize the importance of community and of giving back. I remind myself that I am who I am today because of all the efforts of other people who devoted time and energy for my benefit, and I try to do the same by reaching out in my spare time to be a resource for young students through volunteer organizations.

I look forward to watching the upward career path of Mac Teng. My hope is he becomes a multi-millionaire and helps us with donations to support our scholarship programs in the future. Of course, I hope that some of you are inspired to make a secure online donation right now! What say u?

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Grant Declination: Carnegie Corporation of New York

BETF sent a letter of inquiry to Carnegie Corporation of New York earlier this year. Our funding request was in support of the national VP-Member Services who needs funding to fully implement the BDPA IT Corps project.

Our funding request has been declinded. Carnegie Corporation of New York wrote:

Dear Mr. Hicks,

Thank you very much for your letter, and for acquainting the foundation with your IT Corps project. We carefully reviewed the materials you sent. Unfortunately, the activities suggested for funding do not fit within our present program priorities.

The board of trustees selects only a few areas at any given time in which to concentrate grants; even in those areas, we receive many more good proposals than we can fund.

For current information about the Corporation and its programs, I invite you to visit our website. I also recommend the Foundation Center, which has materials that may be useful as you search for funding.

I regret that I must send such a discouraging reply and wish you success in securing support from other sources.

Rikard Treiber
Associate Corporate Secretary
and Director of Grants Management

We will continue to seek out funding for our global BDPA IT Corps project.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

BDPA Foundation Announces Eli Lilly Scholarship Winners

The BDPA Education & Technology Foundation (BETF), in coordination with Eli Lilly and Company, is pleased to announce the winner of the third annual Eli Lilly and Company Scholarship for BDPA Students. The two winners this year are Carrine Johnson, a senior at Palos Verdes Peninsula High and Hung Vo, a computer science student at the Georgia Institute of Technology.

The purpose of the Eli Lilly Scholarship for BDPA Students is to recognize outstanding minority students, with an interest in information technology, who make significant contributions to society. Applicants must excel academically, show exceptional leadership potential, and make an impact on their communities through service to others.

"Thank you for selecting me as one of the two winners ... I am very excited about winning this scholarship! It will be extremely useful" said Carrine Johnson.
Part of the application process is an essay that answers the question 'Why is Information Technology Important'. Carrine's essay focused on the development of nation's economy, environment and education. Click here for the full text of her winning essay.

Hung's essay focused on the impact of IT on the healthcare industry. Click here for the full text of his winning essay.

Eli Lilly and Company continues to demonstrate a strong commitment to the development of tomorrow’s leaders within the information technology industry,” said Wayne Hicks, BETF Executive Director. “The BDPA Foundation is pleased to work with Eli Lilly to help cultivate these future leaders. Our hope is that other corporations will contact us for similiar scholarship opportunities

Previous Eli Lilly scholars were:
  • 2008 - Khalia Braswell (North Carolina State University) and Christian West (Northwestern University)

  • 2007 - Daniel Puente (Yvonne A. Ewell Townview Magnet Center School of Business and Management) and Lee Reed (University of Michigan)

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Message from Columbus Chapter President

BDPA Columbus is the 17th largest chapter in the nation. It has been fun to watch the increased activity of the Ohio capital city chapter over recent months under leadership of chapter president Reggie Hillery.

Here is message that he shared with his stakeholders earlier today:

I still can't believe a year has passed since I began my tenure as your chapter president. This has been an outstanding year for the chapter. We have had ups and downs, and have used these experiences to grow as a chapter. I want to thank all of the volunteers and sponsors who have sacrificed their time and effort in making this a great organization.

Here is a recap of some of the exciting events and news that occurred over the past year:

  • Strategic Planning Session/Retreat and drafted revisions to the chapter bylaws and strategic plan

  • Held first ever BDPA Town Hall & Sunday Brunch Meetings to get input from the community and members on their needs

  • Held seven Information and Exchange Meetings with sponsorship by Computer Associates, JPMorgan Chase, Tech Columbus, Compuware and Microsoft

  • Conducted weekly computer workshops for high school students

  • Competed in Regional and National BDPA High School Computer

  • Two Members (Cecil Jones and Jeff Daniels) led workshops at the National BDPA Technology Conference

  • One Member (Ricardo Wilkins) led a National webinar on Application Development

  • Participated and supported JPMorgan Chase BDPA Affilate Chapter

  • Building the foundation for a College Affiliate Chapter to be launched in 2010

  • Initiated and consulting on computer center for a local church

  • Consulted on new websites for a local church, a fine arts focused community organization, and a non-profit that promotes self-esteem in high school girls

  • Partnered with NSBE for a Joint Networking & Holiday Party

  • Redesigned the Chapter Website

  • Launched Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn Network groups

  • Many, many more events

As you can see, our chapter has been busy supporting and advancing information technology in the Central Ohio area. We can't wait to continue our programming and events in the remainder of 2009. We want you to join us in serving the Central Ohio community.

It has been a pleasure to serve as your chapter president and I look forward to 2010. If you have any questions or are interested in volunteering, please send me an email. Also, don't forget to check our website for upcoming Information and Exchange Meetings.

Reggie Hillery, president
BDPA Columbus Chapter

I encourage BETF-Blog readers to share some love with Reggie by using the COMMENTS link below!

Grant Declination: Fluor Foundation

We submitted a letter of inquiry to Fluor Foundation earlier this year on behalf of the National BDPA Member Services department. We sought funding for the BDPA IT Corps project.

Our funding request has been denied. Fluor Foundation wrote:

Dear Mr. Hicks,

Thank you for your letter requesting support from the Fluor contributions program for BDPA Education and Technology Foundation.

Your request has been reviewed; and unfortunately, we must decline the opportunity to contribute to the BDPA IT Corps project at this time.

Although we are unable to assist, we wish you every success in meeting your goals.

Suzanne Esber
Executive Director

BETF will continue to seek funding for BDPA IT Corps. It is a remarkable opportunity to provide our high school students with a global picture of their future in the IT industy.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Message from Los Angeles Chapter President

BDPA Los Angeles is the 14th largest chapter in the nation. Chapter president John Malonson is committed to increasing the quality and quantity of programs and services for BDPA stakeholders in southern California. He shared the following message this month:

"The bridge between your dreams and reality is a plan. Do you have one?"

Greetings BDPA LA family,

We all know somebody (or are that somebody) that dreams big but plans small. Without adequate planning, our goals and dreams remain elusive. This month, I encourage you to revisit your goals and validate them for "SMART"-ness. If the objectives to reach your goals do not meet the criteria below, it's time to update them.

It is time to set SMART (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, Timely) Goals.

Last month, event attendees learned how to augment their personal networks with online tools such as LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter. BDPA LA is proud to announce that it has a presence on each. Be sure to link yourself and join today!

  1. BDPA on LinkedIn Group

  2. BDPA LA on Facebook

  3. BDPA LA on Twitter

Our program meeting this month focuses on How to Succeed in Your Job Search. Join us and learn from an actual recruiter regarding what today's employers look for in potential candidates. Feel free to bring a guest. Lunch provided to those that RSVP by email. Our guest speaker will focus on:
  • What Employers Want to Hear From You

  • Current/Future Market Trends

  • Building the Best Resume/Cover Letter

  • Job Search Resources that You "Don't" Know

  • Preparing for the Interview

  • Proper Post Interview Follow Up

  • Ask the Interviewer & Open Discussion

Our meeting will take place on Saturday, Oct. 24th @ 1:00 pm at the Tom Bradley Youth & Family Center (5213 W Pico Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90019).

I look forward to seeing you at our next event!

- John Malonson, president
BDPA Los Angeles Chapter

Use the COMMENTS option below to share your thoughts with John on his message!

Sunday, October 4, 2009

HSCC Testimonial: Evan Angcos (Los Angeles)

BDPA Los Angeles founded in June 1982 has been training students to compete in the national high school computer competition (HSCC) for many years.

One of the most talented students to come through the program is Evan Angcos. Evan was a member of the national team from Los Angeles in 2007, 2008 and 2009. He shared the following thoughts on his HSCC experiences:

The 2009 BDPA Technology Conference was a memorable and worthwhile event. This year’s conference held in Raleigh, North Carolina at the Raleigh Convention Center. Twenty-three (23) teams represented chapters from across the nation; each with the goal of ending the Southern Minnesota winning streak.

Our chapter, the well-known Los Angeles team consisted of five people. Each team-member was required to be an expert in different parts of the application development life cycle. The application usually has standard requirements over the years so assigning tasks and priorities was not too difficult. This year we had a new edition to the team, Mani Lewis. The four other team members were Terrell Allen,
Angela Bell, Tyrone Hinderson, and myself (Evan Angcos), the team-captain.

After a long flight, we *endured* the Opening Ceremony with the keynote speaker
Lamman Rucker. The next day was the first day of the competition and we were ready for our first event (Round Robin). This year, many of the questions were different, but we succeeded in answering three out of the five questions correctly, the other two we were incapable of answering without proper preparation. After the Round Robin was Quiz Factory. It was a shame to find out that the only questions that were the same in Quiz Factory were the BDPA history. As for the other questions, they were all different from what we studied.

Overall, our scores were good and we actually scored the highest (even hi
gher than Southern Minnesota) in the quiz event!

The next day was the final round; building the application. We went through the application with a breeze, because we did several mock-ups before going to the competition. Unfortunately, during the last minute of the programming event, the wrong code was deleted which left one of our pages dysfunctional. We were discouraged as we walked from the room, and into the holding area waiting to give our presentation. Our presentation was a full 15 minutes long but after leaving we felt we made a good impression on the judges.

The last and final day was filled with excitement. We made our way to the Raleigh Convention Center for the Awards Gala. We wanted to hear our name called for the top 5. We wanted to end Southern Minnesota’s winning streak.

Sadly, we did not and we didn’t place in the top 5. We deserved it, but we w
ere just unlucky this time. We were prepared, and properly trained by our coordinators … after the Awards Gala we got our results. Surprisingly, we placed 7th place! We were grateful that we placed at such a high rank and the highest in the Los Angeles’ Chapter history. Some of us are determined to come back and take top 5, and it won’t be long.

Share some BDPA-Love with Evan using the COMMENTS option below!