Thursday, July 31, 2014

Technology Expresso Cafe, 7/31/2014 (Wayne Hicks)

David Blackman and Jacqueline Sanders are the co-founders of Technology Expresso Cafe, a multimedia platform that promotes all aspects of the IT industry with a focus on BDPA programs, scholarships and services.

An Internet radio interview was conducted with BDPA Education and Technology Foundation executive director Wayne Hicks, however, due to technical difficulties, the show was never archived. David and Jacqueline were kind enough to post a complete transcript of the interview on their website.

Click here to read Part 1 & 2 of the interview.

Click here to read Part 3 & 4 of the interview.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

GE Upgrades Its BDPA Sponsorship to Bronze Level

Known for a tradition of life-changing innovations as well as providing capital, expertise and infrastructure for a global economy, GE recently upgraded its BDPA corporate sponsorship to the Bronze level in advance of the 36th annual National BDPA Technology Conference on August 5-9, 2014 in Indianapolis.
Dr. Craig Brown, National BDPA president said, "I am honored to welcome GE as a Bronze Level Sponsor of BDPA. On behalf of the National Board of Directors and the National Executive Committee, we thank GE for their commitment, continued support and contributions. The support from sponsors like GE makes it possible for BDPA to continue forward with its mission to impact the lives of its members, and the local chapter communities in which they live, through technology."
With more than 300,000 employees and operations in over 140 countries, GE employees reflect both the local communities they serve and the people with whom they do business. GE sees diversity and inclusiveness as an essential part of their productivity, creativity, innovation and competitive advantage.
Camille Bryant
"GE’s partnership with BDPA is an investment in our company’s future and a unique opportunity to support education initiatives that encourage young professionals to explore careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics," said Camille Bryant, HR Leader at GE’s Advanced Manufacturing and Software Technology Center.
Founded in 1975, BDPA is the largest African American information technology association in the country. The organization is well-known for its deep commitment to training K-12 students underrepresented in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) education. BDPA continues to bridge the digital divide by providing career growth opportunities for its members.

To become a sponsor like GE and learn more about and sponsorship opportunities, please contact BDPA Corporate Sales team by email ( or phone (301.584-3135 x108).

BDPA Career Fair Job Seekers register at
and Career Fair Employers register at

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Grant Disbursement: BDPA Dallas ($10,000)

BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) is proud to announce a grant disbursement in the amount of $10,000 to the BDPA Dallas chapter. The funding came as a result of the active fundraising efforts of chapter members via payroll pledges, online platforms and volunteer grants.
BDPA chapter president Chad White indicated that the funding was necessary "to assist with traveling needs for our students to the National Conference in August. We have selected five students and two instructors that will attend to support the student needs."
BETF encourages the other 45 local BDPA chapters to aggressively seek out ways to support fundraising for their 2015 Student Information Technology Education & Scholarship program.

Monday, July 28, 2014

BCforward Seeks Diverse IT Talent via BDPA Career Fair

The BDPA Career Fair is buzzing with pre-conference excitement as new corporations continue to be added to the floor. BDPA is pleased to announce that BCforward agreed to recruit diverse IT talent at the career fair next week! BCforward is a minority owned IT recruiting, consulting and staffing firm headquartered in Indianapolis with offices in 17 states, Russia, India and China. The company was founded in 1998 and is currently the largest consulting firm and largest MBE certified firm headquartered in Indianapolis.

We encourage all job-seekers in the IT industry to register for the *FREE* BDPA Career Fair! If you can be on the career fair floor on August 8-9, 2014 ... then you should be checking out the thousands of current IT job postings available on the BDPA Job Board.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Fundraising Tip: Never Apply for a Grant Without Contacting the Foundation First

BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) spends a good deal of time writing grant proposals. Our success rate isn't very high. I think that the following fundraising tip may be helpful to us as we move forward in our grant-writing campaign.

Never Apply for a Grant Without Contacting the Foundation First:

As much as you might want to believe that grants are awarded simply due to the fit of the program and the excellence of the application, it simply isn't true. In fact in our experience, the odds of getting a grant that you send in without contacting the foundation are about 5 percent-10 percent. Just as in individual (and all!) fundraising, developing relationships is critical. There are people at these foundations, called program officers, who are directly responsible for deciding who gets money and who doesn't. They care deeply about the work they are funding, and consider it an advantage to be able to scope out potential grantees. In-person meetings with program officers are ideal, but even a short phone call with a grant manager or administrator can still yield the basic information you need as well as getting your name in the mind of someone at the foundation.

Sometimes these initial conversations can save you valuable time in applying for a grant program that was not a fit -- always do your homework on their funding goals ahead of time! But often, they are valuable knowledge-gathering sessions: use the call or meeting to identify the funder's key priorities and desired language, which many times cannot be found on the organization's Web site; figure out which of your programs or initiatives is the best fit;, and determine how much money you should request.
Finally, go out on a limb and ask if they would be willing to preview your LOI (Letter of Intent) or proposal before you submit it officially. This advance look will give them a sense of ownership over your request and provide you with valuable feedback. Start today by calling the offices of your top foundation prospects and seeing if you can get on a relevant program officer's schedule.

I must admit that the two largest grants that BETF received in the past year came after face-to-face meetings with the funding source.

This tip is inspired by Darian Heyman's new book, 'Nonprofit Management 101: A Complete and Practical Guide for Leaders and Professionals'.

Does this tip seem like one that you might use for your local chapter or nonprofit? If not, do you have a fundraising tip that you would like to share with us?

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Video Game Innovation Fellowship for Minority Youth

Leaders on Fast Track (LOFT) has partnered with the Entertainment Software Association (ESA) to run the ESA LOFT Video Game Innovation Fellowship. We are asking all our of student members to take a close look at this fellowship opportunity.  Your goal is simple: create a video game or application that can inspire social change in your community.
  • Eligible: Minority youth ages 16-24
  • Reward: 20 winners will receive $1,000 grants and a trip to DC
  • Deadline: August 15, 2014.

Friday, July 25, 2014

Capgemini Plans to Hire Diverse Talent at BDPA Career Fair

BDPA is pleased to learn that Capgemini will be a participant at the 2014 BDPA Career Fair held during the 36th annual BDPA Technology Conference in Indianapolis. Capgemini is headquartered in Paris, France and is present in over 40 countries. It is, above all, a people company—more than 130,000 people worldwide. The company seeks to increase its diversity in the information technology sector by hiring experienced people during the 2-day BDPA Career Fair on August 8-9, 2014.

Capgemini, one of the world's foremost providers of consulting, technology and outsourcing services, enables its clients to transform and perform through technologies. Capgemini provides its clients with insights and capabilities that boost their freedom to achieve superior results.

If you have ever thought about testing your marketability with a world-class company ... then you need to register to attend the BDPA Career Fair today!

If you are unable to attend the career fair in person ... then add your resume to our active BDPA Job Board!

Thursday, July 24, 2014

36th Annual BDPA Technology Conference (Indianapolis, August 5-9, 2014)

Learn more about the 36th annual BDPA Technology Conference being held August 5-9, 2014 in Indianapolis.  Here is a brief video clip with some of the details of this remarkable STEM-based event.

Call BDPA on (301) 584-3135 to learn more about connecting with the organization's programs, scholarships and services on a local, regional or national level.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Cincinnati Students Prepare to Compete at National BDPA STEM-based Championships

L-R: Brian Pulliam, Hasani Harrigan, Deborah Prince, Frank Hill, Austin Murph, Jon Carr and Yaw Asante.

BDPA Cincinnati chapter is sending six students to the 2014 BDPA Technology Conference to compete in the National High School Computer Competition (HSCC) championship, IT Showcase and Mobile Application Showcase.   These young people will leave Cincinnati on Wednesday, August 6, 2014 and our scheduled to return back to the Queen City on Sunday, August 10, 2014.

Itobore Odje
Itobore Odje represents Cincinnati in the 1st annual BDPA Mobile Applications Showcase. She is currently a student at the University of Cincinnati.

Brian Pulliam is an alumni of the HSCC program, finishing as high as 5th place in the 2013 National BDPA Technology conference. He is currently a freshman at Sinclair College. This year Brian provides moral support to the HSCC team while he competes for the first time in the BDPA IT Showcase. He plans to present on the topic, 'Telepresence Robotics in the Military'.

The four high school students that will represent the chapter at the National BDPA HSCC championship next month are new to the game. However, they are powerful coders who will do well. Cincinnati Bell sponsored the BDPA membership dues of the four students listed below as well as Brian Pulliam! Share some love for our 2014 HSCC team:
  1. Yaw Asante is a sophomore at Walnut Hills High School. His interests are medical science, computer science and law. This is Yaw’s first year with competing in the HSCC championship.

  2. Jon Carr is a freshman at St. Xavier High School. Jon likes computers, robotics and video games. This is Jon's first year with competing in the HSCC championship.

  3. Hasani Harrigan is a junior at Seven Hills High School. Hasani likes music, engineering and is an outstanding baseball player. Hasani is the leader of the HSCC squad this year based on his prior experiences in both the 2012 and 2013 HSCC championships held in Baltimore and Washington DC, respectively.

  4. Austin Murph is a sophomore at Seven Hills High School. His interests are golf, engineering and video games. This is Austin's first year with competing in the HSCC championship.

BDPA Cincinnati chapter is very proud of its Student Information Technology Education & Scholarship program.  

Deborah Prince (xpedx) and Frank Hill (Hiltronics Computer Associates) both dedicated untold hours to training these young people each Saturday from January thru July at the computer labs of Cincinnati State Technical College.

We need your support to move forward! Can you take a moment to make a secure online donation towards college scholarships for these STEM-centric young people? Just click here -- -- and help us as we try to help them!

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

BDPA Eminence in Broadcasting Award Goest to The IndyChannel's Larry Blackerby and Ericka Flye

Nominated and recognized as one of the best in the business, Larry Blackerby, general manager, WRTV6, The IndyChannel and Ericka Flye, WRTV6 News Anchor will be presented with the 1st annual BDPA Eminence in Broadcasting Award during the 36th annual National BDPA Technology Conference awards gala on Saturday, August 9, 2014 in Indianapolis.
Ericka Flye
Recognized for their distinction in ethics and journalistic principles, continuous commitment to community good, and leadership that honors accuracy and innovation in reporting, we are honored to present this most distinguished award,” said Dr. Craig Brown, National BDPA president. “Additionally, BDPA is privileged to present our prestigious 2014 BDPA Eminence Award to Emmy-nominated reporter and Emmy-nominated host of "Indianapolis This Week, Ms. Ericka Flye,” he added.
BDPA recognizes WRTV6, TheIndyChannel, for their outstanding achievements in electronic journalism and receiving top honors from the Indiana Associated Press, the Indiana Society of Professional Journalists, and the Indiana Broadcaster Association’s Station of the Year Award.
Larry Blackerby
BDPA would like to honor General Manager Larry Blackerby for his continued excellence in support of WRTV6. The IndyChannel has over 65 years in broadcasting history and won the 2013 Regional Edward R. Murrow Award,” stated Pamela Sexton, National BDPA vice president.
Founded in 1975, BDPA is the largest African American information technology association in the U.S. It is also the largest national non-profit organization continually involved in training students underrepresented in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics education across the country. BDPA continues to bridge the digital divide by providing career growth opportunities for its members with its programs, scholarships and services on a local, regional and national level.

Press registration is at and on-site registration will be available. Free lunch and parking will be provided. For more information, please contact Brenda Parker on (240) 421-2765.

BDPA iRadio Show: July 22, 2014 (Derris Boomer, Adam Hecktman, Everaldo Gallimore)

BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) is very proud to be the creator of the BDPA iRadio Show. You can listen to the archive version of the show using the widget shown in the right-hand sidebar of this blog. FREE download from the iTunes Store is also available for our listeners!

More Technology Podcasts at Blog Talk Radio with BDPA on BlogTalkRadio

The guests on the July 22nd show:

Derris Boomer
Derris Boomer - Marketing Director, BDPA New Jersey - Derris Boomer is both the owner of Boomer Technology Group and the marketing director for BDPA New Jersey chapter. Derris updated us on upcoming programs and services offered by BDPA New Jersey chapter.  Secondly, he gave some insights into the entrepreneurial impulse that drove him to creating his own consulting firm.  Finally, Derris let us know that he will be a presenter at the 2014 BDPA Youth Technology Camp on the topic, 'Explore Non-Traditional Career Paths in Technology'. Derris wants the students to understand that the notion of acquiring a job may be worn-out. Careers are the new paradigm in the information technology industry. Derris will help the young people understand how to assess their skills and implement strategies to maximize their ability to find new career paths in their future.   You can follow Derris on Twitter - @DerrisBoomer

Adam Hecktman - Director, Microsoft - Adam Hecktman is the director of technology and civic engagement for Microsoft. Adam will be a presenter at the 2014 BDPA Youth Technology Camp on the topic, "Microsoft's Innovation Vision". His multi-media presentation covers trends that Microsoft sees for the future of technology and how they apply in the real world. Trends including natural user interaction, big data, mobile, social, cloud and others are explored for our future. We explored some of these trends in technology during our BDPA iRadio Show interview with Adam. Adam's twitter handle is @AdamHecktman

Everaldo Gallimore - Owner, Gallimore Design - Everaldo is one of the co-producers of the BDPA iRadio Show. He is also a remarkably creative business owner. BDPA iRadio Show was pleased that Everaldo could share his insights about entrepreneurship and his passion for BDPA.

We hope you enjoy the insights and commentary on the show from each of these guests. Please take a moment to post a comment to let us know that you care!

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Oracle Scholarship for BDPA Students

Explore ORACLE Scholarships and New Opportunities with National BDPA

Apply on or before Tuesday
July 29, 2014

National BDPA 2014 ORACLE Scholarship Program

Overview:  BDPA scholarship program, generously supported through sponsorships, offers over $100,000 annually in cash awards for qualified students and BDPA Members.

National BDPA currently offers scholarships to those studying technology related curricula at institutions of higher learning. National BDPA also sponsors scholarships to promote professionalism and the advancement of careers for technology professionals.

Discover more through National BDPA, local BDPA Chapters, bdpatoday, and BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) to learn about the variety of ways National BDPA and Industry partners support access to education and professional development opportunities.

Other scholarships available to BDPA members are offered via BETF. Select below to visit your link to their landing page for other scholarships:

 Who Should Apply
Students majoring in or pursuing careers in Engineering, Computer and Information Science, Computer Engineering or Mathematics.

Saturday, July 19, 2014

High School Computer Competition (Atlanta, 2014)

BDPA Atlanta chapter has a powerful legacy in the national High School Computer Competition (HSCC) championships. They won the championship in 2012 with a group of young men that have continued their STEM-based education in college.

The 2014 HSCC team is ready to compete for another championship!

L-R: Cameron Reaves, Josiah, Madeline Viera, Jakobi Freeman, Saket Shirsath
The HSCC program hosted by BDPA Atlanta chapter is designed to teach students how to create web applications using the following programming languages; HTML, CSS, SQL, MySQL, and PHP. In addition to learning how to code, students receive coaching regarding their personal and professional development. The HSCC volunteers in Atlanta work with the students on team building, public speaking, time management, presentation skills and goal setting. The chapter seeks to equip, encourage and enlighten its students in an effort to prepare them for current and future opportunities in the information technology industry.

The major corporate sponsor for the chapter in 2014 is Macy's. However, we hope that you will do your part to help us raise college scholarship funding for these youngsters!

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Message from National BDPA President

Greetings BDPA Family!

It’s been a few months since my last report to you. We are halfway through the 2014 BDPA year and the leadership team has been busy at work. I wanted to stop and share with you a few highlights of what has been happening thus far. The following are a list of initiatives, requests and accomplishments that the team is very proud of. We are continuously moving forward and the organization is already showing favor based on these items.
  1. The leadership team has been asked to review and update all of the Standard Operating Procedures of the organization. This is important because most of these documents have not been updated since 2005. This means that the organization has been operating following the same procedures for almost 10 years! By updating these procedures, we can incorporate more efficient ways of providing better services to our local chapter leadership and membership.

  2. The decision has been made to reorganize the National Office. The objectives of this reorganization is to identify areas where improvements can be made to accomplish the following:
    • Better support a Volunteer Leadership Team
    • Generate data that can be used long term to maintain quality control
    • Improve efficiency of day-to-day operations
    • Improve overall customer service (internally and externally)
    • Lower costs wherever possible

  3. The CIO has been reviewing the organization’s technological needs and looking for solutions to balance workloads and increase productivity/efficiency. The following solutions have been implemented and are being rolled out for utilization:
    • Bizzabo Event Mobile Application ( – This technology will make BDPA events and networking even better than before. It offers a wide range of configurable components that will help to captivate, motivate and inspire BDPA conference attendees like never before when it is launched at the 2014 National Conference! The following are a few benefits that will be available:
      • Conference agenda will be at the participant’s fingertips throughout the conference.
      • Conference attendees will be able to network and interact with each other through the app (shared feedback) and via social media.
      • Conference attendees will have access to venue maps and location finders at all times.
      • Conference speaker profiles will be available for review 24x7.
    • Smart Sheets ( – This is a collaboration tool that will assist the leadership team with improving its management responsibilities.

  4. During this year’s national conference, in addition to the High School Computer Competition (HSCC) program that showcases the talents of our students so successfully, students will have the opportunity to compete in a Mobile App Showcase sponsored by State Farm. This year’s showcase will act as a pilot and will be conducted with a small group of students. The results will help the leadership team determine the best way to implement the program full-scale during future conferences.

  5. The leadership team is working towards building strategic partnerships with other organizations to help strengthen the BDPA programs and member services, bringing a stronger value proposition to its members. Partnerships with the following organizations are being considered:
    • BEYA
    • CODE2040
    • HBCU Career Development Marketplace
    • ITSMF
    • MainStreet Inclusion Advisors
    • NSBE
    • PEM
    • TechGirlz

  6. The leadership team is looking for ways to increase the awareness of BDPA member services, attacking the 'best kept secret' scenario that has existed for many, many years. The team is looking into ways to:
    • Increase collaboration with similar organizations (Strategic Partnerships)
    • Increase use of social media
    • Re-brand the organization (coming /soon)
    • Improve the BDPA Website

  7. The leadership team has developed and implemented a new BDPA Social Media Strategy and Policy that is currently available for chapters to implement locally. It was created to increase the organization’s social media presence and promote its messages. Analytics already show that interest in BDPA has increased.
RECRUITMENT of volunteers has been the key to success within BDPA. As a team, recruiting volunteers with the skill sets needed to keep progress going has made all the difference. Stay tuned for more information on how to recruit for success within BDPA! I am writing a series of documents that will show you how this can work on the chapter level.

We all have a responsibility to increase awareness of the BDPA Brand. The benefits are wide spread. We can vastly improve the BDPA member value proposition through improved services, stronger programs and collaborative initiatives.

Please visit the BDPA website ( and meet the National Leadership Team. Thanks for your support and it continues to be a pleasure to serve as your National President!

Craig Brown, PhD, President
National BDPA