Two N.C. A&T Students Selected for White House HBCU All-Stars Program

09/27/2017 Students

White House Initiative on Historically Black Colleges and UniversitiesNorth Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University students, Keonia Rodgers and Brandon Long have been selected for the 2017 class of the White House Initiative on Historically Black Colleges and Universities’’ (HBCU) All-Stars.

Sixty-two undergraduate, graduate and professional students were honored at the 2017 HBCU All-Star Annual Summit hosted at the White House. In its fourth year, the initiative launched the HBCUs All-Stars program under the Obama administration and recognizes HBCU students for their accomplishments in academics, leadership and civic engagement.

Highly-recommended and lauded by university administrators for their impressive accomplishments beyond their resumes, transcripts and applications, Long and Rodgers will serve a one-year term as ambassadors, providing outreach opportunities and communications to their fellow students about the value of education and the initiative as a networking resource.

Brandon Long

This role means that my existing leadership and impact on campus and within the local community has been deemed highly necessary and that the White House Initiative on HBCUs will be supporting my goals this academic school year,” said Long.

A senior, computer science major, Long’s campus activity follows the order of Obama’s 2016 “Computer Science for All” initiative to empower all American students from kindergarten through high school to learn computer science and be equipped with the computational thinking skills needed to be creators in the digital economy and to be active citizens in the technology-driven world.

“Through the implementation of coding workshops, hackathon and coding competitions and tech talks, my goal is to spread the knowledge of computational thinking among students and the local community,” adds Long.

In his first major event, “Hackathon NCAT,” set for Sept. 29-30, over 100 students will compete by pitching technical solutions to real industry problems in less than 20 hours.

Keonia Rodgers
Keonia Rodgers

As a psychology major, Rodgers plans to spend her final undergraduate year helping “others achieve their greatest potential.”

“My outreach platform is the start of an organization called, "Boss Up!" which is a character developing organization designed to cultivate the collegiate woman,” said Rodgers. “The executive strategy incorporates mentorship, speaker forums, seminars, community service events and a Boss Up! book club.”

In addition to support for campus activities, the HBCU initiative and all-star program will provide ambassadors an opportunity to participate in regional and national events, as well as, web chats with initiative staff and other professionals from a wide range of disciplines that support a spirit of engagement and personal and professional development.