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J. F. Drake State Technical College Chosen to Participate in National Initiative, Preparing Critical Faculty for the Future


J. F. Drake State Technical College chosen in a competitive process to join with 12 other HBCUs in NSF-Supported Initiative That Will Provide Professional and Leadership Development to Women of Color Faculty Members in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics Fields;

(Huntsville, Alabama) - J. F. Drake State Technical College has been chosen through a national competition sponsored by the Association of American Colleges and Universities to participate in  Preparing Critical Faculty for the Future (PCFF), a project that will support women of color faculty in science, technology, engineering, mathematics (STEM) disciplines in becoming strong academic and administrative leaders, both on campus and within their respective disciplines. The project is funded by the National Science Foundation's Historically Black Colleges and Universities-Undergraduate Program (HBCU-UP).  The thirteen institutions selected represent many different types—including two-year and four-year, public and private institutions.

“We are very pleased to have been chosen as the only two-year college to participate in this important national initiative,” says Dr. Helen McAlpine, President of Drake State.

The list of institutions chosen to participate includes:  
Bennett College for Women - Greensboro, NC
Central State University -  Wilberforce, OH
J.F. Drake State Technical College -  Huntsville, AL
Livingstone College -  Salisbury, NC
North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University -  Greensboro, NC
North Carolina Central University -  Durham, NC
Spelman College -  Atlanta, GA
Tennessee State University -  Nashville, TN
University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff -  Pine Bluff, AR
University of Maryland Eastern Shore - Princess Anne, MD
University of the District of Columbia -  Washington, DC
Wiley College -  Marshall, TX
Winston Salem State University - Winston-Salem, NC

J.F. Drake State Technical College has nominated Khalilah Burton, Biology Instructor and Carolyn Henderson, Mathematics Instructor to participate in all phases of the project along with colleagues from the other participating institutions.  These two faculty members will also be joined by a larger team of individuals from J.F. Drake State Technical College who will attend an AAC&U summer institute in July 2011 on “Engaging Departments.” 

“The individual faculty members participating in this project include many talented faculty members who will be leaders both in their institutions and nationally in the coming years,” said AAC&U Senior Scholar and project director, Alma Clayton-Pedersen.  “Through this initiative, we hope to provide support to a network of scholars and teachers who can help each other and the rest of the nation as we all seek to improve undergraduate STEM education for students at HBCU’s and for students, especially those historically underserved, at all different kinds of colleges and universities.”

The goals of the PCFF project are to: provide professional and leadership development for women of color faculty in STEM disciplines, or NSF natural and behavioral science disciplines; and improve undergraduate STEM education at HBCUs and beyond.  This new project will provide participants with the opportunity and the financial support to engage in and influence the national dialogue on improving undergraduate STEM education. Project participants will both contribute to and gain from national efforts to develop and implement innovative STEM teaching and learning practices and effective curricular change strategies.  By uncovering useful strategies for preparing women faculty of color for academic leadership in STEM fields, PCFF expects to improve STEM education broadly as well as at HBCUs.

This initiative is supported with a grant from the National Science Foundation.  For additional information about the project, see:

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