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Millions in grants funds Access to Innovation initiative for Johnson C. Smith University (780 hits)

Johnson C. Smith University is happy to announce the receipt of $1,100,000 from Kenan Charitable Trust and $738,000 from the Department of Education for its Access to Innovation Initiative. This K-16 initiative will increase students’ interest and preparation in computer science and entrepreneurship and their overall STEM skills. West Charlotte High School and Ranson International Baccalaureate Middle School have been identified as pilot schools for the first three years.

Students from West Charlotte High and Ranson Middle will have opportunities to participate in programs covering after-school enrichment, dual-enrollment, mentorship and summer sessions from JCSU. These programs will aide in the strengthening of students’ college-readiness, technology skills, and entrepreneurial mindset. Teachers from the schools will also be provided support for implementing computer science education into West Charlotte’s NAF Tech Academy and Ranson Middle School’s IB program.

JCSU students will be exposed to tech-entrepreneurship through a pre-college summer program, innovation and market-driven courses and programs, experiential learning and capstone projects.
During Summer 2017, JCSU partnered with Google to launch a pilot at the university with 20 incoming students. Additionally, Professors Suryadip Chakraborty and Awatif Amin spent six weeks in Google’s Faculty-In-Residence program, building classroom projects.

“This initiative is about co-creation, impact, and scalability,” said Terik Tidwell, director of STEM Innovation. “Over the last year, we have been listening and working with industry partners, parents, community leaders, teachers, school leaders, and universities to develop a blueprint to increase the density of access and propensity towards innovation for students in and around the university.”

“JCSU's faculty and staff are ready to accelerate our impact for creating a strong STEM workforce in the innovation economy,” said Dr. Hang Chen, dean of the College of STEM. “With this additional support, we will be able to continue on the university’s radical trajectory.”

About Johnson C. Smith University
Founded in 1867, Johnson C. Smith University is an independent, close-knit urban university located in Charlotte, N.C. It has a growing national reputation for integrating the liberal arts with business, the sciences and technology in ways that empower tomorrow’s diverse entrepreneurial citizens and leaders. Offering 24 fields of study, including a master’s degree in social work, to more than 1,400 students from a variety of ethnic, socioeconomic and geographic backgrounds, the university’s excellent academic programs focus on servant leadership, civic engagement and global responsibility. For more information about JCSU, visit www.jcsu.edu or follow the university on social media sites Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn and Pinterest.
Posted By: Reginald Culpepper
Thursday, November 16th 2017 at 7:12PM
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