Monday, March 31, 2014

Call for Assembly of 36th Annual National BDPA Technology Conference

By virtue of the authority vested in me as National BDPA President and in accordance with the mandates of Article VIII, Sections §8.1 and §8.2, of the National BDPA Bylaws; it is my distinct pleasure to announce the call for assembly of the 2014 Annual Delegates Meeting and your 36th Annual National BDPA Technology Conference.

Our site for this year’s National BDPA Technology Conference shall be Indianapolis, Indiana - with BDPA Indianapolis serving as our Host Chapter. The JW Marriott Indianapolis is the official headquarters hotel for our assembly, Career Fair, Technology Expo, National High School Computer Competition (HSCC) championship, National IT Showcase, and our annual Youth Technology Camp. Said National BDPA Technology Conference shall take place August 5-9, 2014 - with our formal Banquet and Awards Gala on the evening of Saturday, August 9th.

BDPA Chapters, BDPA members, Corporate Sponsors, and stakeholders are hereby notified of the time and place for the 2014 National BDPA Technology Conference and Career Fair. Take full advantage of your annual memberships, discounts, and color sponsorships available to your organization in this year’s portfolio.

BDPA Chapters are directed to make appropriate plans to ensure their Executive Committees, Delegates, new members, student members, participating High School Computer Competition teams and IT Showcase teams have successfully preregistered prior to next quarter. I look forward to our next reunion and industry meetings this August in Indianapolis!

Dr. Craig Brown, president
National BDPA
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Saturday, March 29, 2014

Dr. Kyla McMullen (Clemson University) Wins BDPA Epsilon Award for 'Professional Achievement'

National BDPA annually selects and awards the BDPA Epsilon Award to recognize and celebrate key contributions and accomplishments of its members. The 'Outstanding Professional Achievement' award is presented to individuals who have reached or realized a significant milestone in their career, corporate or otherwise, that is noteworthy. One of the 2013 Epsilon Award winners in this category is Dr. Kyla McMullen, assistant professor in the Human-Centered Computing Division at Clemson University.

Dr. Kyla McMullen is the first African American woman to earn a PhD in Computer Science and Engineering at the University of Michigan. At Michigan, she served in various graduate-level mentorship roles through AGEP (The Alliance for Graduate Education and the Professoriate) and WISE (Women in Science and Engineering). Further demonstrating her commitment to the minority graduate community, she served as the President of SMES-G (The Society of Minority Engineers and Scientists – Graduate Component) and Vice President of both MUSES (The Movement of Underrepresented Sisters in Engineering and Science) and SMES-G. She is committed to increasing the number of African American scientists and engineers who possess academic excellence, professional success, and seek to spread their knowledge to help future generations. When Dr. McMullen received her PhD from the University of Michigan, it was a major step forward for all Blacks in technology.

Her technical prowess is shown through her numerous publications, which further contribute knowledge to computer science and engineering. In addition to her fellowship from the Horace. H. Rackham Graduate School she also earned a three-year fellowship through the Office of Naval Research.

Kyla accepts Epsilon Award from BDPA prez Monique Berry
Kyla is both a knowledgeable and committed asset to the information technology industry. She was a featured presenter at the 2013 BDPA Technology Conference ... in fact, she was a 'rock star' to all members of the BDPA family as they learned about her pioneering efforts at the University of Michigan. Soul clap to Dr. Juan Gilbert, winner of the 2008 Epsilon Award for Outstanding Technical Contribution, for submitting the 2013 Epsilon Award nomination for Dr. McMullen.

You can follow Dr. McMullen on Twitter: @Dr_Kyla
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Friday, March 28, 2014

Dr. Shaundra Daily (Clemson University) Wins BDPA Epsilon Award as 'Most Promising Technologist'

National BDPA annually selects and awards the BDPA Epsilon Award to recognize and celebrate key contributions and accomplishments of its members. The 'Most Promising Technologist' award is presented to individuals who have been recognized as future technology leaders based on their drive, commitment and results thus far in their careers. One of the 2013 Epsilon Award winners in this category is Dr. Shaundra Daily, assistant professor in the Human-Centered Computing Division at Clemson University.

Dr. Daily serves as the chair of her division in the Clemson University School of Computing. Although she is early in her academic career, her scholarship stretches back to her successes as a graduate student at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where she was only the second Black woman to earn a Ph.D. in her program.

Dr. Daily has written numerous grants to develop new technologies that have resulted in nearly $1M in funding. Her projects have uniquely combined computation with content areas that are not typically utilized. For example, she has worked in the area of Affective Computing to design, build, and evaluate emotion-sensing technologies in support of social and emotional growth. In fact, she is an inventor on a patent for a washable wearable bio-sensor that she helped develop.

Currently, she is developing a user interface to support teachers in understanding how students respond in the classroom, as well as an environment to support student interest in computing as they develop three dimensional dance partners. Her work has been disseminated through a book chapter, journal articles, and conference proceedings which have led to her work being featured by WGBH’s Science City, Science Update Radio Program, National Public Radio, Under the Microscope, Nova Science, and Forbes. She has recently been appointed to serve as an Institute for the Advancement of Healthcare Scholar for Clemson and an Emerging Scholar for Diverse Issues in Higher Education.

BDPA has no doubt that Dr. Daily's record of technology development will continue as she continues to support Clemson's efforts to push the boundaries of Human-Centered Computing. Soul clap to Dr. Juan Gilbert, winner of the 2008 Epsilon Award for Outstanding Technical Contribution, for submitting the 2013 Epsilon Award nomination for Dr. Daily.

You can follow Dr. Daily on Twitter: @DrSBDaily
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Thursday, March 27, 2014

Letter of Inquiry: Helen Bader Foundation

BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) partnered with BDPA Milwaukee chapter to submit a letter of inquiry to the Helen Bader Foundation seeking funding to support the chapter's Student Information Technology Education & Scholarship (SITES) program.

The Helen Bader Foundation (HBF) has a lofty, yet simple goal: Turn today’s challenges into tomorrow’s accomplishments. They do this by supporting worthy organizations that make life better for people in their communities. Through awarded grants HBF is able to help organizations in Milwaukee bring young and elderly residents together in exciting and stimulating after-school activities that recharge attitudes and give participants a new perspective on one another. By creating scholarship funds, HBF can give children and families educational options they wouldn’t otherwise have.

Simply stated, HBF helps organizations in its program areas move from “how things are” to “how things could be.” The online grant application jointly created by BETF and BDPA Milwaukee chapter was successfully submitted on March 27, 2014.
HBF wrote, "Thank you for your submission; your grant application has been successfully submitted to the Helen Bader Foundation for review by our staff. Your request will be considered at our next staff meeting, after which you will promptly receive an email regarding the progress of your request."
BETF will continue to work with BDPA Milwaukee chapter president Carmen Giles and her team to obtain funding support for its worthy SITES program!
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Wednesday, March 26, 2014

BDPA Detroit Celebrates Success at 2011 BDPA Technology Conference

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

BDPA iRadio Show - March 25, 2014 (James Arama, LaDonna Crum, Michael Wulf)

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!

Popular Technology Internet Radio with BDPA on BlogTalkRadio

The guests on the March 25th show:

James Arama - software engineer, Funeral Innovations - Five years ago James was trained by BDPA Southern Minnesota chapter as part of its Student IT Education & Scholarship (SITES) program. He was chosen to be part of a 5-person team to compete in the 2009 national BDPA High School Computer Competition (HSCC) championship held in Raleigh, NC. His team won the HSCC championship that year!  James earned scholarships that helped him finance his college education at Marist College. He is now a software developer and entrepreneur working side-by-side with his HSCC coach, Zack Garbow, for a company called Funeral Innovations. James is the embodiment of the BDPA tagline, '...classroom to the boardroom'.  You can follow James on Twitter -- @thejamesarama

LaDonna Crum - chapter president, BDPA Greater Birmingham - LaDonna Crum is an applications support analyst. She took on another critical role last year as the president of our BDPA Greater Birmingham chapter and she has been lighting things up in Alabama with a fervent roar about the benefits of membership in BDPA. She is attracting new volunteers and funding ... and she is planning an aggressive schedule of programs and services for both students and IT professionals in Birmingham.  Her chapter is currently the 36th largest in the nation.

Michael Wulf - vice president, BDPA Midwest Region - Michael Wulf began his term as the BDPA Midwest Region vice president in January 2014. Michael provides leadership and guidance to 11 chapters located within his region. He hosted a regional conference in Columbus OH on March 21-22, 2014. Our BDPA iRadio show listeners will learn about Michael's accomplishments over the first 100 days of his administration as well as his vision for the future of BDPA on both a regional and national level.
Michael can be found on Twitter - @michaelgwulf

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!
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Monday, March 24, 2014

Zack Garbow (Funeral Innovations) Wins 'Most Promising Technologist' Epsilon Award

Zack Garbow, co-founder of Funeral Innovations, was honored at the 2013 National BDPA Technology Conference with an individual Epsilon Award as 'Most Promising Technologist'.

Zack is one of the foremost innovators in the industry, bringing his extensive Silicon Valley experience into the death care industry by co-founding Funeral Innovations. Before starting Funeral Innovations, Zack was a software engineer within IBM Research, where he gained over 100 patents pending and earned the title of Master Inventor, becoming the youngest Master Inventor in the history of IBM. Prior, Zack studied Computer Science and Mathematics at the University of Minnesota.

Zack is actively involved in helping his community. He was the technical director for BDPA Southern Minnesota chapter. He taught web technologies to high school students. Under his tutelage, the local chapter's students won their National BDPA High School Computer Competition championship a record five (5) straight years.   The number of students trained annually more than doubled during his tenure.

In 2005, Zack was accepted into Y-Combinator, where he would develop social media products in Silicon Valley, while networking with startup specialists, including the founders of Twitter, Gmail and Pinterest. Zack developed at that time to assist in remote management of BDPA computer camp activity.

In 2011, Zack moved to Boulder, CO where he continued to manage development of development while in Boulder.  The Rochester (MN) School District used this software platform to manage its web development classroom activities.
Thomas Moskalik, retired web development instructor for the school district said, “ surpasses anything commercially available. Instead of software that costs over six figures annually, provides a flexible solution capable of supporting multiple chapters/entities, at virtually no cost. To say the least, I am impressed with the software and its creator.
Soul clap to BDPA Southern Minnesota past president Nat Calvert for nominating Zack Garbow for this prestigious IT industry award!
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Thursday, March 20, 2014

US Naval Academy Summer STEM Program

Applications are now being accepted through April 15 for the United States Naval Academy Summer STEM Program. The Summer STEM Program is an overnight academic program designed for rising eighth-through 11th-grade students in good academic standing who have an interest in math and science. The program gives students the opportunity to experience real-life application of math and science principles through hands-on practical learning. The academy's current students, midshipmen, help run the Summer STEM Program and act as mentors to students.

The Summer STEM Program is held in three sessions: June 2-7 for rising eighth- and ninth-graders; June 9-14 for rising 10th-graders and June 16-20 for rising 11th-graders.

All students selected to participate pay approximately $350 for the summer program and are responsible for providing their own transportation to and from the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Md.

Applicants will be notified of their application status by May 1.

For more information about the Summer STEM Program and the application process, visit or call 410-293-1858.

Friday, March 14, 2014

State Farm Neighborhood Assist Grants

State Farm Neighborhood Assist is back to help 40 more causes make a difference in their community with a $25K grant. Submit your ideas for positive change in the areas of education, safety and community development.   
The deadline is March 23, 2014.

The State Farm Youth Advisory Board will select the Top 200 finalists, and then it's up to you to vote for your favorites up to 10 times per day. The 40 causes with the most votes will receive a $25K grant.

Read more here.
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Grant Declination: Macy's Foundation (BDPA Cincinnati)

Well, that was quick! We received a response from the Macy's Foundation less than a week after submitting our online grant proposal to them on behalf of the BDPA Cincinnati chapter.

The declination letter, sent to the chapter's president, read as follows:

Mr. Dalric Webb,

Thank you for your funding inquiry to the Macy's District Grants program.

Your local District Grants Committee has reviewed your request for the following:

Organization: BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF)
Program: Student Information Technology Education & Scholarship Program
Request Amount: $5,000.00

The numerous requests we receive throughout the year limit the amount of resources we have to support worthwhile causes. We wish we could support all the wonderful organizations located across the country that apply to us for funding but it simply isn't possible.

We thank you for writing us and, although we are unable to offer support, we extend best wishes for continued success.

Macy's Charitable Contributions

BETF will continue to aggressively seek out funding to support BDPA programs, scholarships and services at the local, regional and national level. Please feel free to contact the BETF executive director if you have questions or wish to discuss further.
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Thursday, March 13, 2014

BDPA Corporate Supporter Kroger Seeks Diverse IT Talent

BDPA is very pleased to announce that The Kroger Company agreed to become a corporate supporter. They plan to post a career opportunity on the BDPA Job Board - - to see if BDPA is a legitimate source for diverse IT talent. Kroger, one of the world’s largest retailers, employs more than 339,000 associates who serve customers in 2,425 supermarkets and multi-department stores in 31 states. They are a major employer with some remarkable technologies.

Kroger is one of a growing number of corporations seeking support from BDPA in its recruiting efforts. Do you know of any unemployed or under-employed BDPA members in your chapter that could benefit from these growing job postings? If so, please have them click here to upload their most current resume!
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Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Message from BDPA Cincinnati Chapter President

Dear BDPA Cincinnati chapter members,

As we enter the last month of the first quarter for 2014 – it’s Full Speed Ahead!

Black History month is rapidly fading in our rear view mirrors and ahead is a full month of activities for our chapter and its members! While we accomplished great things in February including passing our 2014 budget, recognizing our 2013 High School Computer Competition (HSCC) team, holding our Corporate Advisory Council meeting, and bringing on-board two more BDPA volunteers – we still have a full deck ahead of us! So GREAT JOB TO ALL FOR YOUR FEBRUARY VOLUNTEER EFFORTS! (T)ogether (E)veryone (A)chieves (M)ore!

The month of March is starting off with more challenges. We need to fill our remaining open board positions. If you are not ACTIVELY participating on the BDPA board, please give consideration to lending your time and talent to the success of this organization. We need you. Your community needs you. Our students need you. The time commitment is roughly 4–6 hours a week when we are at full board strength. Can you lend a hand? Contact me directly if you are interested and visit our chapter landing page to see which positions are open and are of interest to you. I look forward to hearing from you soon.

At our monthly program meeting on March 19, our guest speaker, Dr. Russ McMahon, will speak on the 'History of Computing in Cincinnati'! This will be a very engaging and exciting exchange of ideas and information. As always, bring your resume and business cards at this professional development and networking opportunity session. You can sign up to attend this highly interactive and informative session here.

A huge THANK YOU to two of our corporate sponsors this month. First, Cincinnati Bell provided sponsorship for 60 student memberships. Secondly, Northern Kentucky University provided sponsorship to support our HSCC team going to the national HSCC championship later this year! The 36th Annual National BDPA Technology Conference will be held in Indianapolis, IN this year from August 5-9, 2014. These financial investments are critical to the success of our chapter. This funding increases our ability to engage and connect these under-served youth on their BDPA developmental journey 'from the classroom to the boardroom'!

Our Youth Technology Computer Camp is going strong as well with 16 students in attendance at the Saturday classes being held at Cincinnati State Technical College. Visit the BDPA Camp website for more information or to contact the training team. Also, we encourage any of you who will be in the Charlotte, NC area on March 14-15, to say hello to our very own Hadiya Harrigan as she is recognized for winning the NCWIT Award for Aspirations in Computing! Congratulations again Hadiya! We are very proud of you and your accomplishments!

As always, your feedback is earnestly solicited. Send me a note or pull me to the side at the monthly program meeting. This is YOUR chapter.
  • Are you feeling engaged?
  • How is your BDPA membership working out for you? 
  • How can we improve the value of your membership? 
Lastly, are you a member of the BDPA Cincinnati Groupsite? Take a moment to join now and stay connected with what is going on with the chapter. Keep a look out for our upcoming BDPA “Members Only” events and outings! We want to see you soon at these very unique opportunities to connect with other active chapter members.

Dalric Webb, president
BDPA Cincinnati Chapter
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