Sunday, July 31, 2011

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Grant Declination: The Kroger Co. (BDPA Cincinnati)

In the interest of total transparency BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) shares information on our grant-writing efforts here on this blog. Sometimes the information is good and uplifting.

Sometimes the information is disappointing. BETF learned that our grant proposal to The Kroger Co. has been turned down. We wanted funding to support the 16th annual BDPA Cincinnati chapter Education and Awards Banquet.

The declination message from Kroger read as follows:

Dear Wayne Hicks,

We are writing in response to your recent request for assistance with your event. While we are greatly impressed by the scope of your organization’s work, we are unable to offer BDPA Education and Technology Foundation support at this time.

If your organization does not participate in our Kroger Neighborhood Rewards Fundraising Program, please visit our website for an application. This is a quick, easy way for schools (K-12), churches or any 501(c)(3) charitable organization to fundraise.

Best regards,
Kroger Customer Communications Team

BETF will continue to seek funding to support BDPA Cincinnati chapter and the other 44 local BDPA chapters around the nation. If you have any ideas or funding sources that you think we should consider ... please let us know!

Friday, July 29, 2011

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Is Your Digital Tattoo Attracting or Repulsing Customers?

Tonya R. Taylor
It’s a fact, love them or hate them tattoos are popular and (almost) permanent. The tattoo design choice, or body art, says something about you; well actually a lot about you. It may convey your mood at a particular moment in time, it may have a deep personal meaning, you may like the artwork or some may think they're just stylish.

Even though tattoos have become incredibly mainstream the kind I am talking about has nothing to do with body art. This type of tattoo is about your business or career; yes even if you have a small business, be a college student or work in corporate America. Let me ask you a simple question, what does your digital tattoo say about your business?

Before you can answer that, I need to explain exactly what a Digital Tattoo is.

Just like a regular tattoo, your digital reputation is an expression of yourself and your business. Over time it is shaped by you and added to by others which include friends, family and your business visibility online and in the media.

Your digital tattoo is what a potential customer, recruiter, corporate executive, or anybody else finds online about your business. It’s the information people see when they search the internet for your name or your business name.

What images will they find of you? – an old photo from college or high school, your company logo, a cartoon character where your picture should be or your favorite sports team instead of a current photo?

What information will they find on your website or blog? – a new video, static information that has never been changed or updated since December or your latest blog post?

What images will they find on social media? - are you presenting at a conference, you with your family, you participating at a networking event or hanging out with friends?  (Are you even using social media to help shape your digital tattoo?)

What information will they find in the media? – your published article(s), a press release, a story written about you or your business, or nothing at all?

Why is your digital tattoo important? - Ask any successful salesperson or flourishing marketer, they will tell you this...“People buy from people they know, they like and they trust”.

Your digital tattoo will help create the magic to make this happen.

Copyright © 2011 Rising Star Ideas, LLC. All Rights Reserved Worldwide.

Tonya R. Taylor, Your Savvy Online Business Builder, is dedicated to helping you learn how to use the internet to build a bigger more profitable business so you can spend more and make less. Her clients learn savvy ways to use their website to take their online presence to the next level fast. To get your FREE Savvy Online Business Building Starter Kit and receive weekly online marketing tips, tools and resources visit

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

BDPA Conference Workshop: 'Everybody Matters' (LaShawn Sithole)

Wayne Hicks & LaShawn Sithole
The 2011 BDPA Technology Conference begins next week. One of the people that I'm looking forward to seeing is LaShawn Sithole (owner, One In a Billion Consulting). I met LaShawn a few years ago at a BDPA conference (see photo) and have followed the growth of her business interests since. In fact, my hope is that the BDPA Education and Technology Foundation will work closely the Next Young Phenom Foundation in the coming weeks and months.

It is for these reasons that I'm looking forward to sitting in on LaShawn's workshop next week in Chicago.

What workshops are you looking forward to seeing next week in Chicago?

Volunteer Grant Award: McKesson Foundation ($500)

Christopher Parker
McKesson Foundation sent a $500 check to the BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) to honor the volunteer hours donated to BDPA Richmond chapter by Christopher Parker. This volunteer grant is based on service and leadership provided by Christopher as the chapter president.

The funds will help to support the young people that are heading out next week to participate in the 2011 National BDPA High School Computer Competition Championship in Chicago. Good luck BDPA Richmond!

Many corporations have volunteer grant programs. We encourage all BDPA supporters to place a call to their human resources department to see what it takes to qualify for a volunteer grant.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

BDPA iRadio Show - July 26, 2011

The BDPA iRadio Show creates a vibrant communications platform that speaks to all BDPA stakeholders.  We had a great show on July 26, 2011.

Listen to internet radio with BDPA on Blog Talk Radio

  1. Monique Berry, President-Elect, National BDPA - Monique shared her vision for the future of BDPA with specific examples of programs that she wants to implement. I enjoyed her emphasis on the need for BDPA leaders to increase our level of engagement and communication within the organization. Monique also gave shout-outs to the conference team as she described what the audience can expect from the conference next week.
  2. Michael Robinson, General Manager, Microsoft - Michael encouraged BDPA members to recognize the leadership development opportunities that BDPA provides as we are moving up the corporate ladder at our workplace. He also shared the concept of diversity dexterity with the audience and noted it was important in his most recent 4-year stint working for Microsoft on the African continent and beyond.
  3. Cedric Sanders, HSCC Alumni (Class of 1991), BDPA Kansas City; Administrative Manager, United States Navy - Cedric shared the impact that BDPA had on his life as a high school junior and senior in 1990 and 1991 when he represented BDPA Kansas City chapter in the national HSCC Championship. The confidence and the skills that he was taught during the local training and national competitions served him well as he moved through his career with the US Navy. We are hopeful to reconnect Cedric with his other HSCC teammates from 20 years ago.
  4. Goldie Bonney, Chapter President, BDPA New Jersey - Goldie shared her passion for BDPA with an emphasis on the powerful programs that her chapter puts on for the community ... specifically the Families In Technology Day ... held for the past 8 years by BDPA New Jersey chapter. It turns out that BDPA has given away over 800 laptop computers to families in New Jersey as part of the annual FIT Day process. Goldie is looking forward to visiting Chicago for the first time in her life next week!
Our host for this show is Franne McNeal. The technical advisor is John Malonson. The show is sponsored by the BDPA Education and Technology Foundation.

We invite you to listen to archive recording of our shows:
  • June 14 - Julius Clark, Clifford Clarke, Wayne Hicks and John Malonson
  • June 28 - Renetta English
  • July 12 - Marybeth Gasman, Pablo More, Earl Pace and Wesley Williams
  • July 26 - Monique Berry, Goldie Bonney, Michael Robinson and Cedric Sanders

BDPA iRadio Show Interview: Michael Robinson (Microsoft)

BDPA iRadio Show interviewed Michael Robinson, General Manager, Microsoft on July 26, 2011.

Michael encouraged BDPA members to recognize the leadership development opportunities that BDPA provides as we are moving up the corporate ladder at our workplace. He also shared the concept of diversity dexterity with the audience and noted it was important in his most recent 4-year stint working for Microsoft on the African continent and beyond.

The interview was conducted by Franne McNeal.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Grant Award: Christ Church Cathedral ($15,000)

BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) is pleased to announce that the Episcopal Society of Church (aka, Christ Church Cathedral) partially approved our grant proposal with an award of $15,000 to support BDPA programs and services in Cincinnati, OH.

We learned of this grant opportunity from BDPA Cincinnati Corporate Advisory Council chairperson Patrick Nelson. BETF worked closely with BDPA Cincinnati chapter member Ellery Lewis to complete our written grant proposal in March 2011. A few weeks later we learned that our grant proposal made it through the first round of cuts and that we would need to answer questions at a face-to-face interview with church officials.

Here is the PowerPoint deck that we used to guide the flow of the discussion at the face-to-face interview that was held with Patrick Nelson, Ellery Lewis and BETF executive director Wayne Hicks.

A little over a week later we learned that a partial award of $15,000 had been approved. That funding will support the Student Information Technology Education & Scholarship (SITES) program implemented by BDPA Cincinnati chapter. This includes funding Bikram Sapkota (Taft HS), Christian Johnson (Mason HS), Curtis Mimes (Taft HS) and Hadiya Harrigan (Xavier HS) to participate in the 2011 National BDPA High School Computer Competition Championship being held next month in Chicago.

Good luck BDPA Cincinnati!

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Grant Award: FIS Foundation ($1,000)

BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) is pleased to announce that FIS Foundation approved our grant request for $1,000 to support the BDPA programs and services hosted by our BDPA Dallas chapter.

FIS Foundation award letter read as follows:

Dear BDPA Education and Technology Foundation,

We want to thank you for the opportunity to be part of your great cause. We know that our contribution will go to good use in your efforts.

Thank you for all you do and good luck.

Warm regards,
Mike Hayford, Chief Financial Officer
FIS Foundation

BETF wants to thank FIS employee Johnny Wilson for being our corporate champion on this grant request. These funds will support Dallas area high school students Bridget Mfitumukiza, Gilbert Mfitumukiza, Kayla Roberts, Kiera Robinson and Stella Thang who will be competing in the 2011 National BDPA High School Computer Competition Championship next month. Good luck Dallas!

The BDPA Insider - July 24, 2011

The BDPA Insider - July 24, 2011

What better way to start the day than with your weekly message from BDPA!

In this issue:

  1. 7 Ways Job Seekers Self-Destruct
  2. 2011 BDPA Technology Conference Video
  3. BDPA Chicago Chapter's 'Fantastic Voyage' - 8/5/2011
  4. Blacks Gone Geek Live! 2011 National BDPA Conference
  5. Fundraising Tip: Stage a Board Member Thank-a-Thon
  6. IT certifications have lost their pricing power
  7. New college grads doing better at the pay window
  8. Take Five: Osedra Siler (BDPA Indianapolis)
  9. Take Five: Danielle Cauthen (BDPA New York)
  10. Top IT jobs in demand in 2011-Q1

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Grant Disbursement: BDPA Richmond ($1,386)

BDPA Richmond chapter worked closely with BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) for a number of years to promote payroll pledges from its membership. There are a number of BDPA Richmond chapter members who make payroll donations as part of their employer's giving campaign or as part of the local United Way campaigns. As a result, BETF collected a good deal of funds to support BDPA Richmond programs.

BETF approved a fourth grant request by BDPA Richmond chapter this month. This time a partial grant award of $1,386 has been approved by BETF and will be sent to the chapter in support of their "fall semester scholarships".

BETF encourages all 45 chapters to take advantage of the funding process that is currently in place.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Take Five: Osedra Siler (BDPA Indianapolis)

Osedra Siler is a multi-talented IT professional currently employed by Eli Lilly & Company. Her skill sets include: Process Improvement, Change Management, Service Management, Project Management, Business Integration, Disaster Recovery testing and Security Access Management. She graduated in 2007 with a Information Systems degree from Florida A&M University.

I know Osedra has a passionate advocate for BDPA Indianapolis chapter ... particularly the youth education programs. She has worked for the past few years on the STEM-based training that the chapter provides to high school students.

Osedra agreed to participate in our ongoing 'Take Five' interview series.

    Osedra & 2010 HSCC Team
  1. How did you get involved with BDPA? - In 2008, the VP of the Indianapolis chapter invited me to a meeting after telling me about the organization. I had just begun my first job out of college in January of 2008. I attended the monthly meeting and was very impressed with the work the organization was a part of (e.g. student programs, professional development and networking opportunities). I immediately joined the local chapter in Indianapolis.
  2. What is the most rewarding aspect of working with BDPA? - The most rewarding aspect of working with BDPA is the opportunity I have to be a positive and professional mentor and teach other minority high school students about computer programming, STEM opportunities (especially for the female students), and help them get internship as high schoolers and get into college. The first year I began working with the HSCC program the majority of students were males. Over the past two years that has changed and the female interests has increased which is awesome.
  3. Can you share a 'success story' about any of your past HSCC students? - Actually many of my students have had the opportunity to participate in a paid summer internship (as a high school junior) with a major corporation working on real world projects, within the past two years. One of the students that intern in the summer of 2010, received a full paid 4 year scholarship to college as well.
  4. What would future evolution or change would you like to see in BDPA's STEM-based training? - I would like to see more innovative training ideas used to assist students to think out the box on what technology can be and do. Possibly, the students can build pieces of a software application (collectively) that can be sponsored by the BDPA organization and used as proof/demonstration of what the students actually learn throughout their training and can be viewed by any spectator outside the BDPA organization.
  5. Any advice for people considering a donation to BETF? - If you have the desire to help a minority students fulfill their dream to attend college, give back to the community to help it grow or give a student an opportunity to realize their potential; a donation to the BETF would be a great start. The BETF helps minority high school students learn & grow skills in STEM programs. These donations will assist each local chapter to fund youth programs that are 'FREE' to students. These programs gives students a multitude of benefits such as network with executives of major companies, IT professionals and other students around the world) that will help them become productive and positive role models in their communities. BETF definitely make a difference in student lives.

BETF appreciates the kind words from Osedra ... however, it is obvious that she is the one making a difference in the lives of many young people .. even famous movie actors recognize Osedra's swagger!

Osedra is the future face of technology!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Battelle Memorial Institute

Battelle Memorial Institute is governed by a self-perpetuating Board of Directors and is a charitable trust organized as a non-profit corporation under the laws of the State of Ohio. A strong partner in building tomorrow’s technology workforce, Battelle seeks to invest in educating men and women who will become the innovators of the future. They are leading STEM education initiatives - from a million dollar donation to the National Society of Black Engineers to building Metro High School - that leverage the power of business/government/educator partnerships for students.

Battelle is in the business of innovation. They are looking for partners who share similar objectives in the community and who understand the value of collaboration and strategic planning. Ideally, the grants they issue are applied where your organization’s direction and Battelle’s intersect. As part of their strategic planning, they aim to create partnerships that are sustainable after the grant is completed. These types of grants are frequently referred to as “seed” grants.

Organizations requesting funds must be tax-exempt under Internal Revenue code 501(c) 3, a school or a governmental agency. Battelle does not fund individuals, extracurricular school activities, courtesy advertisements, or religious, political or fraternal organizations.

Distributions are primarily made to organizations and programs in the greater Columbus area, Battelle's headquarters. Limited financial resources are available to communities in which their laboratory sites and major regional offices are located. Organizations should direct requests to the local Battelle office.

National BDPA president-elect Monique Berry asked that we look into this funding source. It appears that it is primarily suited for a grant proposal from our BDPA Columbus chapter, however, I invite other chapters that are co-located with a Battelle office to let us know if you have interest in seeking funds.

BETF operates on a first-come, first-served basis. Let me know if you or your chapter are eligible and interested in seeking funds from Battelle.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Take Five: Danielle Cauthen (BDPA New York)

Danielle Cauthen works as a web developer for a major corporation during the day. She is also completing her studies to earn a Computer Systems Engineer degree from Columbia University.  Danielle is familiar to me because of her tireless volunteer efforts with BDPA New York chapter. I don't think that there has been a chapter event over the past few years that Danielle hasn't supported in one way or another. The most tangible evidence of her talents within BDPA shows in the work she has done over the past three years with HUMANWARE, the chapter's nationally-recognized newsletter.

It seemed only natural that we would seek Danielle out to participate in our ongoing 'Take Five' interview series.

  1. How did you get involved with BDPA? - Back in 2007, I was searching for an African American professional organization, especially for IT professionals, and doing a Google search I found out about BDPA. I went to my first meeting that October, and then immediately became involved with the New York executive board, assisting with program planning. However, with a web development background, I then moved on to become the webmaster of the chapter website, leading ultimately to my current role as the chapter's Vice President of Communications.
  2. What is your favorite part of working with BDPA? - Being a board member of BDPA New York has allowed me to make an impact within the community by working to increase computer & technology knowledge. It has also been a great opportunity to network, expand my own technical knowledge, and receive support from other African American professionals in a field that we are still greatly underrepresented in.
  3. What future evolution or change would you like to see in BDPA? - I think the development of collegiate chapters would greatly benefit the organization. I would also like to see even more of an improvement in the organization's web presence.
  4. Why should someone pay $100 membership dues to join BDPA? - Setting aside any tangible benefits and member discounts, as mentioned above, BDPA provides Blacks in IT a great forum for networking, expanding technical knowledge,and overall professional support.
  5. Any advice for people considering donation to BETF? - Give to BETF, it's a worthy cause.

There are hundreds of talented IT professionals in BDPA like Danielle. Of course, you'll never know unless you take the time to connect with BDPA via our online networks or the monthly program meetings that take place in 45 cities around the nation. I appreciate Danielle for the work that she is doing to communicate with others about BDPA. It comes as no surprise to me that BDPA New York chapter is one of the fastest-growing chapters in the nation today.

Share some love with Danielle using the POST COMMENT link shown below. Or you can help the BDPA New York chapter raise college scholarship funds if that is more to your liking!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

2011 Black Weblog Award Winners

This blog was proud to be a FINALIST in the 2011 Black Weblog Award. Although we didn't win the award ... it was quite an honor to be under consideration!

Soulclap to Gina McCauley and Maurice Cherry for successfully delivering the 2011 Black Weblog Awards! The Black Weblog Awards were given out earlier this year in Los Angeles during the 2011 Blogging While Brown Conference.

The Awards gala was co-hosted by Kim Coles and Rene Syler. Here is a list of the winning blogs!

2011 Black Weblog Awards Winners
Best Blog Design
Single Black Male

Best Blog Post Series
Single Black Male

Best Business Blog
In Her Shoes

Best Culture Blog
From Ashy to Classy

Best Cooking or Food Blog
Black Girls Guide to Weight Loss

Best Faith Based Blog
DC District Diva

Best Fashion or Beauty Blog

Best Film Blog
The Black Box Office

Best Gaming or Comics Blog
Oh Hell Nawl: Gamers

Best Gossip Blog
Necole Bitchie

Best Health or Wellness Blog
Black Girl's Guide to Weightloss

Best Hip Hop Blog
The Hip Hop Democrat

Best Humor Blog
Very Smart Brothas

Best International Blog
I am the Nu Black

Best LGBT Blog
The Skorpion Show

Best Micro-Blog
Sister Toldja

Best Music Blog
Soul Bounce

Best New Blog
Dirty Pretty Thangs

Best Parenting or Family Blog
 Black and Married With Kids

Best Personal Blog
Skinny Black Girl

Best Photography Blog
Oh Hell Nawl

Best Podcast Series
Blacking It Up

Best Political or News Blog
The Black Snob

Best Science or Technology Blog
She Geeks

Best Sex or Relationship Blog
 Very Smart Brothas

Best Sports Blog
Black Sports Online

Best Teen Blog
Reading in Color

Best Travel Blog
I'm Black and I Travel

Best Video Blog / Vlogger
The Skorpion Show

Best Writing in a Blog
Very Smart Brothas

Blog to Watch
The Skorpion Show

Best Lifestyle Blog
A Diva State of Mind

Best Plus Size Fashion Blog
Young Fat and Fabulous

Best Automotive Blog
Be Prestigious

Best Green, Nature, Outdoor Blog
Outdoor Afro

Best Book, Author, Literature Blog
Reads for Pleasure

Best Blog Network
The Fresh Xpress

Blog of the Year
Very Smart Brothas

Best Group Blog
Very Smart Brothas

Monday, July 18, 2011

The BDPA Insider - July 17, 2011


The BDPA Insider - July 17, 2011

What better way to start the day than with your weekly message from BDPA!

In this issue:

Nia Love
  1. 2011 BDPA Technology Conference Video
  2. Bemley Scholar Nia Love Heads to Valdosta State University
  3. Blacks Gone Geek Live! 2011 National BDPA Conference
  4. HSCC Testimonial: Naomi Matthews (Washington DC, 2010)
  5. Never Give Up
  6. Newsletter: BDPA Washington DC (Jul 2011) 
  7. What Does the Invisible Thought Bubble From Your Members Say?
  8. Why Yo' Momma Won't Use Google+

What is BDPA? Howard James (Philadelphia)

Many people have never heard of BDPA. We have asked BETF-Blog readers and others to answer the query, 'What is BDPA?'. Howard James (owner, Tea Country) shared his thoughts on this question with us recently:

BDPA is an IT legacy builder. I'm a charter member of BDPA (1975) and have been financially current since then (and now a life member). When Earl Pace and David Wimberly first had the audacity to approach a bunch of us in Philly in 1975 about starting an organization for Black IT professionals to help each other and our community, there was no doubt in my mind that they were on to something. We met a number of times to determine what it was we wanted to really be, then we voted on the name BDPA from among three names placed on the table. This, and the rest, is history.

I've served as President of the Philadelphia Chapter in 1990-1991. I received National Member of the Year in 1992.

My active involvement with BDPA has varied from heavy to light depending on my availability. What makes me want to contribute, at least to some extent each year, is knowing that BDPA has built and continues to strengthen a legacy. Even the significant numbers who are no longer members, take what they have gleened from BDPA and use it to contribute to the IT industry in many ways that we often don't even hear about. BDPA's positive impact on African-Americans in the IT field, as well as its impact on global IT in general, is much more far reaching than any statistics that we may gather will reveal.

We should all make a commitment each year, no matter how small, to assure that BDPA's stamp of excellence is perpetuated. Let's sing it together; you know the tune: "I'll be there, I'll be there, just call my name, and I'll be there". And let's sing it every year.

Howard has a strong legacy within BDPA. I hope that others will follow his lead by sharing their thoughts on this query, 'What is BDPA?'

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Where Are They Now? Hayes Modems

What they were: Dial-up modems from the company whose founder, Dennis Hayes, essentially invented the PC modem in the 1970s. The commands he devised became such a standard that all dial-up modems use them to this day. Hayes dominated the modem business for years -- it was as synonymous with the product category it pioneered as any tech company before or since.

What happened: Well, dial-up modems don’t matter as much as they once did, in case you hadn’t noticed. But Hayes’ decline and fall dates to well before the death of dial-up: The company stubbornly kept prices high even in the face of much cheaper competition, and thought its future lay in making ISDN modems, a market that never took off. It declared bankruptcy in 1994 and again in 1998, and was liquidated in 1999.

Current whereabouts: In 1999, Zoom Telephonics -- the company whose dirt-cheap modems played a major role in crushing Hayes -- bought the Hayes name. It continues to market a few Hayes-branded modems. But it’s a pretty obscure fate for a once-mighty brand -- I didn’t know it was still extant at all until I checked.

SOURCE: 'Where Are They Now? 25 Computer Products That Refuse to Die' by Harry McCracken.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Bemley Scholar Nia Love Heads to Valdosta State University

BDPA Atlanta chapter had its greatest finish in the National BDPA High School Computer Competition (HSCC) championships back in 2008. The members of that team came in fifth place and earned Jesse Bemley Scholarships.

One of the talented members of that team was Nia Love. She is a multi-dimensional graduate who played basketball, golf and softball at Mt. Zion High School in Atlanta GA. She plans to use her Bemley Scholarship to study criminal justice at Valdosta State University.

Nia shared thoughts about her BDPA experiences:

It was an outstanding experience being part of the BDPA High School Computer Competition (HSCC) team. At first, I didn't want to be part of something that took away my free Saturdays. I didn't know how much being part of BDPA would change my life for the better.

I competed against a number of students, including my brother and cousin, to gain a place on the Atlanta HSCC team that participated in the 2008 National BDPA HSCC Championship. We trained really hard to prepare for the competition. It took a lot of dedication on the part of me and my teammates.

The conference itself was one of the best experiences that I have ever had. We hosted it in downtown Atlanta … about 15 min away from my house. I was in my comfort zone to start the competition and that was awesome. The Opening Ceremony keynote speaker (Ephren Taylor) was great. I found it cool that he was famous. The best part of the opening ceremony to me was the inspiration of Mario Armstrong. He told us not to let "dream killers" get in or way. The most memorable moment was when Mr. Armstrong gave away hardware, software and training to a BDPA student in the audience who carried around his graphic artist portfolio.

Mario Armstrong & Atlanta HSCC Team
The competition was intense and enjoyable at the same time. The most nerve racking part was trying to make sure that the coding was done correctly and in a timely manner. I was in charge of our team presentation to the judges. Coach Wes prepared me very well. I still use some of the pointers he gave me in my everyday life.

It was a great feeling to get 5th place overall in the national HSCC championship in 2008.

I met Nia at the 2008 BDPA Midwest Regional HSCC held in Cincinnati, OH.

I found her to be a smart young woman with an attitude of success that would serve her well in her future. I'm glad that she earned this Bemley Scholarship and I wish her well in the future!

Grant Proposal: The Kroger Co. (Cincinnati)

BDPA Cincinnati chapter looks forward to its 16th annual Awards Banquet to be held on Saturday, September 17, 2011. The keynote speaker for the banquet is Margo Springs. Ms. Springs is the first African American women to serve as chief information officer for the City of Cincinnati.

BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) worked with BDPA Cincinnati chapter to submit an online grant proposal to The Kroger Co. We asked for them to provide funding towards the annual banquet. Our understanding is that the answer to our request should come within the next ten (10) business days.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

HSCC Testimonial: Naomi Matthews (Washington DC, 2010)

Naomi Matthews was a member of the HSCC team trained by BDPA Washington DC chapter that earned a silver medal at the 2010 National BDPA High School Computer Competition (HSCC) Championship held in Philadelphia. In the process Naomi also earned a Jesse Bemley Scholarship which she plans to use to study computer science in college.

Here is her HSCC testimonial:

Hi, my name is Naomi Matthews. I graduated from T.C. Williams High School in Alexandria, Virginia as part of the Class of 2011. I plan on attending Northern Virginia Community College in the fall with a focus on computer science. In the future I hope to land a career in either programming or some other part of the information technology industry. I will never forget my time as a High School Computer Competition (HSCC) student.

The HSCC experience affected my life in a great way. It helped me obtain an IT internship. The company hired me on the spot when they learned how much I already knew about computers.

I became friends with many of the classmates that I met during my first year in BDPA. Even from the start, my instructors knew that I had a drive in me to learn. My instructors selected me to compete in the 2009 national competition, but sadly I wasn’t able to attend. I made the national team again in my second year. This team our team traveled to Philadelphia for the 2010 national competition and returned with second place.

Naomi (Black & White blouse) & Her Team Wins 2nd Place

It saddens me that this is my final year as an HSCC student. But, this will not be my final year participating with BDPA. I plan to be back as an HSCC chaperone in the future. I will provide any support needed to support the HSCC program.

I have many, many memorable moments from HSCC, one of the most memorable being the national competition. The thrill of being involved in an event attended by people from all over the country and performing at such a high level is life changing. The real adventure is the time leading up to the national competition. The countless hours you spend studying, programming, and quizzing with your teammates is unique – it is a time that you’ll always remember.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

What Does the Invisible Thought Bubble From Your Members Say?

Have you ever wondered what your members are thinking? Remember the 'invisible thought bubbles' that are drawn about the heads of your cartoon heroes? Ever wonder about the 'invisible thought bubbles' running over the heads of your chapter members? Perhaps they are thinking about things without telling you.
  1. They’re unhappy. There are two industries in which people are often unhappy with service but don’t complain much: health care and nonprofits. Just because you’re not hearing disappointment doesn’t mean your members are pleased with you.
  2. They’ll vote with their wallet. The number one reason members stop supporting your chapter or nonprofit organization is the way they were treated by the organization: a lack of gratitude, no clear understanding of the difference they made, endless requests for support without a clear 'return on investment'.
  3. They want you to do better. They want to be acknowledged, involved and informed. Treat them better ... it’s the single best thing you can do as a chapter leader. Keep the member you have and you won’t have to worry so much about finding new converts. A little gratitude goes a long way.
One way to make the invisible visible is to ask questions. How would you personally answer these three questions:
  • Question 1: How likely is it that you would recommend BDPA to a friend or colleague? (Rate on a scale of 1-10)
  • Question 2: What is the primary reason for the score you just gave us?
  • Question 3: What is the most important improvement that would make you rate us closer to a ten?

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Grant Declination: Whirlpool Foundation (National BDPA)

The BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) board of directors want us to go after more funding at the national level. It is more difficult to get funding at national level, however, it is important for future growth of BDPA programs and services ... so we will work hard to 'make it so'.

Our effort to get national funding from Whirlpool Foundation was unsuccessful. We submitted a $25,350 grant proposal last month to the folks from Whirlpool. They recently informed us that our grant proposal had been denied.

The declination letter read as follows:

Thank you for your recent inquiry regarding product donation, sponsorship or financial assistance. Whirlpool’s Community Relations department receives countless requests from outstanding causes such as yours.

In light of the economy and restrained budgets, our incoming requests far exceed available funds. We try to work with those not-for-profits that we have established relationships and are supported by our employees through volunteerism efforts.

Our focus on assistance is in accordance with the following guidelines:

  • Private individuals cannot be offered assistance;
  • Community based initiatives from nonprofit organizations, must have 501(c)(3) status;
  • Organizations must be located within communities in which we operate.
While you may meet the above criteria, unfortunately, we simply do not have the funds available at this time.

We appreciate your interest in Whirlpool Corporation and wish you success in securing the assistance you are seeking.

Kind regards,
Candice L. Garman

BETF will continue to seek funding for BDPA programs and services. Let us know if you have any ideas or thoughts on where we might go to get financial support for BDPA on a local or national level!

BDPA iRadio Show Interview: Earl Pace (BDPA Founder)

BDPA iRadio Show interviewed Earl Pace (Founder BDPA; Chairman of the Board BDPA Education and Technology Foundation; CEO Pace Data Systems) on July 12, 2011. BDPA was created by Earl Pace over 35 years ago. Earl has also been on the BETF board since it was founded in 1992. During this interview he shares his insights on the organization's past and his vision for the future.

The host of BDPA iRadio Show is Franne McNeal.

The show is sponsored by the BDPA Education and Technology Foundation.

BDPA iRadio Show - July 12, 2011

The BDPA iRadio Show creates a vibrant communications platform that speaks to all BDPA stakeholders.  Listen to our show originally broadcast on July 12, 2011.

Listen to internet radio with BDPA on Blog Talk Radio
  1. Earl Pace, Founder BDPA; Chairman of the Board BDPA Education and Technology Foundation; CEO Pace Data Systems - BDPA was created by Earl Pace over 35 years ago. Earl has also been on the BETF board since it was founded in 1992.
  2. Marybeth Gasman, Professor, University of Pennsylvania - Marybeth conducts research related to higher education, specifically African American higher education, historically Black colleges and universities, philanthropy, and fundraising. At Penn, she teach courses on the history of American higher education, diversity in higher education, college and university teaching, and research in higher education.
  3. Wesley Williams, Student Programs Director, BDPA Atlanta - Wes is unique within BDPA. He was a BDPA HSCC national champion as a high school student in Memphis. He coached the BDPA Chattanooga Chapter team to its highest ranking in HSCC championship while a college student. He moved to Atlanta GA and served as the HSCC coach for that team … before becoming the chapter’s Student Programs Director. BDPA has been an integral part of his life for many years. He is an inspirational story in many ways and he embodies the ‘classroom to the boardroom’ model. He currently works for Macys.
  4. Pablo MoreChapter President, BDPA Orlando - Pablo has served as BDPA Orlando chapter president for a number of years. He also served as the Chapter President Liaison for a number of years as well. In that position he was responsible for bringing the 45 chapter presidents together to learn about various issues and to make policy recommendations to the National BDPA Board of Directors. He is a passionate advocate for BDPA and should provide excellent ‘best practice’ ideas from his BDPA Orlando experience.
Our host for this show is Franne McNeal.  The technical advisor is John Malonson.  The show is sponsored by the BDPA Education and Technology Foundation. We invite you to listen to archive recording of our shows held back on June 14 or June 28.