Hampton University celebrated its 150th-anniversary birthday last weekend with a gala that also marked 40 years of leadership of university president, Dr. William R. Harvey.

Hampton University has been breaking ground in academic achievement since Booker T. Washington.

During the 2018 BEYA STEM Conference in Washington D. C. February, the Hampton University Engineering Design Team earned first place in the Advancing Minorities’ Interest in Engineering (AMIE) Design Challenge.

The Hampton University Design Team is comprised of freshman Larry Luster, sophomores Jai Huntley and Kennedi Scott, juniors Raymond Berry, Jr., Shomari Crockett, and Christopher Johnson; and seniors Terry Atwater and Keshia Capers.

“Congratulations to these eight stellar engineers!” said Hampton University President Dr. William R. Harvey. “They represent just a small piece of the cutting-edge creativity that’s a hallmark of innovation happening every day at Hampton University.”

In 2003, the University secured a $92 million dollar grant to launch weather satellites into orbit, making it the first HBCU to be solely responsible for a major NASA mission.

“The corporate judges were absolutely blown away by the Hampton University design team,” said Dr. Joyce T. Shirazi, dean of the Hampton University School of Engineering and Technology.

Engineering teams from eight other universities with Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET) -accredited engineering programs competed and presented their final project presentations during the challenge.

Those teams were Alabama A&M University, Morgan State University, North Carolina A&T State University, Prairie View A&M University, Tennessee State University, Tuskegee University, University of the District of Columbia, and Virginia State University.

“Our engineering students won this competition because they were able to demonstrate, at a very high level, the ability to take a complex problem, create an optimized solution, and present a prototype that was better than their competitors. They exuded confidence and professionalism in their presentations. Moreover, they showed what it means to be The Standard of Excellence.”

The Hampton University Engineering Design Team developed an app program — using IBM Watson software — called ColorSphere that promoted and assisted students in a search for employment.

ColorSphere provided an optimal match for student applicants and potential employers.

Dr. Nellone Reid (’08) was the team’s faculty advisor and Mr. Brandon Diggs (’13) from Corning Incorporated was the team’s corporate mentor. Teams were judged based on design, prototype, and presentation.

The AMIE Design Challenge was sponsored and judged by IBM, Lockheed Martin Corporation, Boston Scientific, The Boeing Company, Corning Incorporated, Northrop Grumman Corporation, Raytheon Company and the National Security Agency.

In addition to winning the top AMIE award at BEYA, Hampton University’s School of Engineering and Technology students attended IBM training in design, test and development applications or “apps” over a three week period.

The School of Engineering and Technology also received a monetary prize that will assist in retention programs as well as a monetary award to each student team member.

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