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JCSU participates in second annual HBCU Diversity in Tech Summit

Johnson C. Smith University is one of 34 Historically Black Colleges and Universities to participate in the second annual HBCU Diversity in Tech Summit. This year’s summit was held on the campus of Howard University in Washington, D.C. The event also included Congresswoman Alma Adams Ph.D., members of the HBCU Caucus and 47 leading companies in the technology industry. 

“There is no workplace diversity without HBCUs. Despite being historically underfunded and under-resourced, these institutions continue to produce top talent, including 40 percent of my colleagues in the Congressional Black Caucus, and 50 percent of all Black professionals,” said Congresswoman Alma S. Adams, Ph.D., Founder and Co-Chair of the Bipartisan HBCU Caucus.

Professionals from each agency spent two days discussing how government, the tech sector and HBCUs can work together to ensure that HBCU graduates are prepared to spearhead emerging technologies such as block chain, artificial intelligence and cybersecurity.

JCSU Director of STEM, Terik Tidwell, who attended the summit said, “We are at a critical time where it is important for the government to double-down on its investments at HBCUs to move our country forward.”

Representatives Adams and Mark Walker of North Carolina are working to move our country forward when it comes to diversity. Following the summit, they introduced the bipartisan Fostering Undergraduate Talent by Unlocking Resources for Education (FUTURE) Act to ensure continued funding for Minority-Serving Institutions (MSIs), including Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs). The FUTURE Act bill would sustain mandatory funding at current levels, ensuring MSIs can finance capital improvements, student services, and faculty and curriculum development.

Tidwell added summits like this are necessary so issues affecting HBCU graduates are addressed. “We create paths for students to be more innovative and engaged, we keep colleges and universities on the path to success, creating a more promising future for all.“

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