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Historic New Alabama State University Partnership with U.S. Dept. of Veteran Affairs Acquisition Academy
Posted By: Reggie Culpepper on September 19, 2018

ASU is the only Historic Black College or University (HBCU) that has entered in to a partnership with VAAA

Goal is to develop a high-quality curriculum in support of academic programs for students and community members

Alabama State University has announced the formation of a new and historic partnership with the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs Acquisition Academy (VAAA) to develop a high-quality curriculum in support of the University’s academic programs.

"This is what we like to call 'CommUniversity,' a term that denotes that the University is working in tandem with others within the community and abroad for the greater good of both," said Dr. Quinton T. Ross, Jr., President of Alabama State University.

Ross said that this new venture with the VAAA enhances ASU’s existing efforts as it continues to build on the countless partnerships that the University has made over the years.

"ASU will soon sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the U. S. Defense Acquisition University (DAU) that will provide ASU access to the large repository of high-quality acquisition curriculum that is being used to train both military and civilian personnel across the federal government," Ross said.

“This is both historic and exciting because we’re the only HBCU that has entered into a partnership with the VAAA, which is wonderful because it allows us to reach out to a community of underserved students in America,” Ross said.

According to wording within the MOU, Alabama State University’s Percy J. Vaughn Jr. College of Business Administration (COBA) will infuse the DAU curriculum into its program and offer a course on 'Acquisition and Contracting' to its undergraduate students by Spring 2019.

The chancellor of the VA Acquisition Academy is Dr. Ruby Harvey, and she believes the ultimate goal of the joint venture with ASU is helping students obtain government careers.

"This pilot program to assist ASU in the development and delivery of acquisition related training for their students is an excellent concept of the federal government working with undergraduate students to assist in preparing them for careers in government service. The VA Acquisition Academy is pleased to participate with ASU on this program,” Harvey said.

"The new course will help our students be better prepared for a career in the federal government," said Dr. Kamal Hingorani, dean of COBA. By the fall of 2020, Hingorani says that the University plans to establish a certificate-program in Acquisition, Contracting and Logistics with the support of its partners at both the VAAA and DAU.

ASU officials stated that the VAAA is exploring an immediate opportunity for two ASU faculty members to receive “Train the Trainer” training in supply chain management, which will allow Alabama State University to incorporate VA and DAU courses into its management curriculum at COBA, and also help train employees of the VA.

"This partnership will allow ASU to continue to provide innovation in educational opportunities for our students and for the community,” Ross said. “This new partnership will allow graduates to be qualified and capable of earning jobs within the federal government, and will help many in the surrounding communities to renew or improve the critical skills that are part of the curriculum. The program is a prime example of the impact of CommUniversity.”

Administrators and faculty at ASU say that their ultimate goal is to become a Defense Acquisitions University Equivalency program.

"As a Defense Acquisitions University Equivalency program, Alabama State University will be able to provide that specific training to our students, as well as those at Maxwell/Gunter Air Force Base and local reserve units, and other community individuals," Ross said.

The ASU President said that both the VA and ASU are very excited about this historic initiative.
"We are stepping into opportunities that will make the difference and have an impact for decades to come," Ross said.
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