Livingstone College

The One Hundred Thirty-Fourth Annual Baccalaureate Service of Livingstone College

As a Christian institution of higher learning founded by the African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church, students who matriculate beneath thy maples and thy oaks, are invited to begin their weekend of commencement events, in worship. The 134th Baccalaureate Service of Livingstone College was held Friday, May 5, 2017 at 7:00 p.m. in Bishop James Varick Auditorium. Presiding, Dr. Jimmy R. Jenkins Sr., the twelfth president affirmed, “This event is designed to motivate graduates with spiritual weapons in order for them to command their rightful place in the global society.”
After the Board of Trustees, faculty, graduating seniors and Golden Graduates processed to “Pomp and Circumstance” in their colorful academic regalia, Bishop W. Darin Moore, Presiding Prelate of the Mid-Atlantic Episcopal District and Treasurer of the Board of Trustees, provided the Invocation followed by the congregational hymn, “God of Our Fathers.”
Bishop Michael A. Frencher Sr., Presiding Prelate of the South Western Delta Episcopal District and Secretary of the Board of Trustees read Isaiah 40: 28-31 as the Old Testament scripture and Bishop Seth O. Lartey, Presiding Prelate of the Alabama-Florida Episcopal District and Assistant Secretary of the Board of Trustees, conveyed Luke 8: 1-9, 11-15 as the New Testament reading.
Celebrating and thanking God for grace, Vice Chairman of the Board of Trustees and Presiding Prelate of the Eastern North Carolina Episcopal District, Bishop Kenneth Monroe offered a prayer of thanks for saving, rescuing and protecting the leadership, church and students of Livingstone College. He implored, “Celebrate what God has allowed us to achieve.”
Chairman of the Board of Trustees and Presiding Prelate of the Piedmont Episcopal District, senior Bishop, George E. Battle Jr., introduced the speaker, Bishop Darryl B. Starnes Sr., Presiding Prelate of the Mid-West Episcopal District. Bishop Battle acknowledged Bishop Starnes as the elected Chaplain, stating “He [Starnes] communicates with God for all of us,” and avowed Starnes as, “ . . . a spiritual and studious disciple maker for Jesus Christ.”
After the Livingstone College Concert Choir’s selection, “Oh How I Love Jesus,” those present were able to attest to the words of Bishop Battle.  Explicating Luke 8: 11-15, Bishop Starnes’s sermon titled, “God’s Word and the Human Heart,” encouraged graduates to examine the text by considering four heart conditions; a hardened heart, a shallow heart, a crowded heart and a healthy heart. Starnes continued a healthy heart is a mature heart and a mature heart, “. . . shoots, roots, and produces good fruit.”
Closing with a blessing from Jude 24, Bishop Staccato Powell, Presiding Prelate of the Western Episcopal District pronounced the Benediction while those in attendance recessed to Henry Purcell’s “Trumpet Tune.”

The One Hundred Thirty-Fourth Annual Commencement of Livingstone College

The 134th Commencement Ceremony of Livingstone College hosted one of its largest crowds in decades as the institution bid adieu to the class of 2017 on May 6, at Alumni Memorial Stadium.
The presence of rainy weather led administrators to delay the ceremony from 9:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m., and as the early morning adjustment was accomplished smoothly, Dr. Jimmy R. Jenkins, Sr., the twelfth President of Livingstone College affirmed, “We have a plan, but God has a plan. This is the day the Lord hath made and we will rejoice and be glad in it. I hereby declare, this is Commencement 2017.” From that moment on, the sun shined beautifully.
As the crowd collectively sang “The Star-Spangled Banner” and “Lift Ev’ry Voice and Sing,” Bishop Michael A. Frencher Sr., Presiding Prelate of the South Western Delta Episcopal District of the African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church, led the Invocation, asking God to come and bless the assembly beneath thy maples and thy oaks. Presiding Prelate of the Western Episcopal District of the African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church, Bishop Staccato Powell followed with a New Testament reading referencing the Apostle Paul’s exhortation to the people of Philippi in Philippians 4:4, with a personal touch for the class of 2017.  Before introducing Bishop George E. Battle Jr., Chairman of the Board of Trustees and the Senior Bishop of the African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church, President Jenkins spoke of Battle’s love, compassion and generosity to Livingstone College and its students. Jenkins detailed for the past six months, Bishop Battle has contributed over $200,000 to student scholarships specifically targeted for graduating seniors with financial need.
Bishop Battle greeted the attendees with a word of thanks. He said, “On behalf of the Board of Trustees, we want to thank the parents for giving us your best. Your children, now young adults, will go and change our world.” Bishop Battle acknowledged the Class of 1967 who participated as Golden Graduates and admitted, “ . . . just a few more years we will sit where you are and we pray we look as good as you.” In summation, Battle professed, “It is God who made us. It’s about him. To God we give the glory for Livingstone College.”
Mayor Karen Alexander brought greetings on behalf of the City of Salisbury and acknowledged Livingstone’s significance to the town. Her appreciation, “Thank you for all you do for our city,” was followed with a personal acknowledgement of a student-intern who is currently serving in the mayor’s office.
Additionally, attendees were greeted by Faculty Assembly President, Dr. Amy Susong and Senior Class President, Briana Snow. Musical selections by Livingstone College Concert Choir warmed the audience as the commencement speaker, (Rev. Dr.) Ambassador Suzan Johnson Cook – excited, ignited and delighted those in her presence.
US Ambassador Cook paralleled lessons from Exodus 13-14 to the life journey of the graduating class. She encouraged the students to move forward with “front line faith for front line leadership,” and poetically sketched scenes of the Israelites experiencing agitation, irritation, a situation, confirmation, liberation and salvation – all leading to celebration. Ambassador Cook passionately left the graduates with resounding advice “take advantage of every opportunity, use what you have and march on.”
Unable to physically attend the graduation ceremony for medical reasons, Valedictorian Kenya Marie Glover sent an audio recording of her speech referencing Jeremiah 29:11. In her absence, Ms. Glover recognized her time at Livingstone was not “defined by a ceremony, but by the time she spent with her Blue Bear Family.” She encouraged her cohorts to, “Think of the bigger picture. Value family and friends. Stay woke when most are sleep. Keep God first at all times.”
Honorary degrees were awarded to Veteran Reverend Michael O. Carter, Presiding Elder of the Little Rock-Hot Springs District of the African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church and Reverend Robert F. Kemp, Presiding Elder of the Cascade District of the African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church. Both candidates were awarded Doctor of Divinity degrees as US Ambassador Suzan Johnson Cook was a recipient of the Presidential Award.
After the conferring of degrees for over 150 graduates and recognition of Golden Graduates, President Jenkins extended a point of privilege to 2016 graduate David Draper who publically proposed marriage to 2017 graduate Khadijah Barrett and she accepted.
Considering the love of Bishop Battle to those in financial need, to the love of inspiration and empowerment from Ambassador Cook, and now the love of two Livingstonians, the event culminated with “goose pimples” as the newly minted alumni, joined the class of 1967 and other attendees to sing the alma mater, O’ Livingstone, My Livingstone.

Livingstone College Class of 1967 Golden Graduates

As Livingstone College said farewell to the Class of 2017 during its commencement services, the institution welcomed home its former students who engaged in similar activities 50 years ago. The 2017 Golden Graduates of Livingstone College is the graduating Class of 1967.

For the seasoned group of Blue Bears, events began Thursday, May 4, with a welcome reception. On Friday, attendees were able to experience additions to the college as they attended a luncheon at the newest on-campus facility, the Events and Hospitality Center, and toured a recent purchase of the college, the School of Hospitality and Management on Jake Alexander Boulevard, formally Holiday Inn. In the evening of May 5, Golden Graduates attended the Baccalaureate Service and casually dined following the event. The culmination of weekend activities was the 134th Commencement Ceremony whereas over 30 Livingstone College alumni, dressed in golden academic regalia, walked across the stage to shake the hand of the current president, Dr. Jimmy R. Jenkins, Sr., and Board of Trustee members. With a golden beam, the graduates were acknowledged for their milestone achievement and commitment to their alma mater.

Class Agent Cynthia Davis McKoy who currently resides Raleigh, North Carolina, reflected on her time beneath thy maples and thy oaks during the presidency of Dr. Samuel E. Duncan. At the age of 16, she began her matriculation at Livingstone College as a Social Studies major. McKoy recalls, “This was the best place to be,” as she reflected on the friendships she made throughout her undergraduate years. Although she was elected as the Class of 1967’s agent 20 years ago and frequently visits the college during homecoming and various activities, as a participant in the Golden Graduate events she confessed, “This feels great. It seems like I was here as a student just yesterday.”

Steeped in tradition, commencement is one of the most honored and revered events of the year for Livingstonians. It is a time to recognize students for the journey they have completed and celebrate the one they are beginning. Livingstone College has many distinguished alumni to celebrate in this class who are still journeying on roads of success. To name a few, Dr. Carolyn Wilkerson Duncan is an educator, author and current Vice President for Academic Affairs at Livingstone College. Dr. Brenda Galloway Smith serves as a Board of Trustee member at Hood Theological Seminary and Alfred Tyler, a great athlete at Livingstone College is a retired professional football player. Rounding out the class are;

John C. Abercrombie (Richland, WA), William C. Abernathy Jr. (Wilmington, DE), Dr. Carolyn Anderson (Winston-Salem, NC), Sandra Smith Baker (Adelphi, MD), Robert Bennett (Fayetteville, NC), Queen E. Brown (Charlotte, NC), Valeria F. Campbell (Statesville, NC), Carol Eichelberger-Pernell (Dover, DE), Harriett Wilks Grant (Cary, NC), Delores Guy (Upper Marlboro, MD), Carolyn Lee Hart (College Park, GA), Shirley L. Holt (Landis, NC), Agnes D. Howard (Pleasantville, NJ), Willie Jean Kennedy (Salisbury, NC), Lorraine Cohen Lee (Charlotte, NC), Joyce T.R. Lofton (Baltimore, MD), John A. McCollough (East Spencer, NC), Clara Harley McNeil (Red Springs, NC), Mattie McKinney Miller (Charlotte, NC), Millicent A. Lomax Philbrook (Pittsburg, NH), Dr. Bobby Rorie (Stone Mountain, GA), Mary Henderson Sellers (High Point, NC), Betty Brannon Simon (High Point, NC), Andrew Spencer Smith (Charlotte, NC), Alice Faye Davis Sutton (Sneads Ferry, NC), Monnie Flack Swepson (Wilmington, NC), Millus H. Turman (Fort Mill, SC), Frances Siler Wilcox (Salisbury, NC), Bernice H. Wilkins (Townsville, NC), Dorothy Edwards Williams (Spartanburg, SC) and Barbara Herbert Wynn (The Villages, FL).

Livingstone College is grateful for the commitment and connection with its alumni.

Graduate Highlight: Victor Nayituriki

Victor Nayituriki is a person who aims to find windows of opportunities, for in his past, it was a matter of life and death. This 2017 Livingstone College summa cum laude graduate is a survivor.  A native of Kigali, Rwanda, Victor recollects on his experience as an eleven year old child in a humanitarian crisis. A witness of explosive violence and brutality of what is noted to natives as the genocide of Tutsis, and to the world as the Rwandan Genocide, he explains, “When the soldiers came back to our house to take my family, I ran in the back of our neighbor’s apartment, climbed in the window and stayed there for three days alone without food or light.”
Since this time, he has continued to seek windows of opportunity. Victor applied for the Diversity Visa Program, an annual US government initiative that awards 50, 000 green cards to persons from all over the world, frequently referred to as the Green Card Lottery. In 2010, Victor was selected in this process and traveled to the US where he resided in Pennsylvania and then moved to Portland, Maine. Victor acknowledges, “I was a part of God’s plan the entire time,” as divinely in 2010, Eugenie Mukeshimana, a genocide survivor who has dedicated her life to helping others, established Genocide Survivors Support Network (GSSN), a charitable organization with a mission to aid genocide survivors in rebuilding their lives and an effort to educate communities about the crime of genocide. Pursuing her mission, Mukeshimana was a speaker at Livingstone College where she informed the college’s president, Dr. Jimmy R. Jenkins Sr., of how he could best assist her program and President Jenkins committed to giving a scholarship to a genocide survivor. Thus, with the assistance of many including Mayor Karen Alexander and Racelle Weiman, Victor began his matriculation at Livingstone College as a Presidential Scholar in August 2013.
As a native French speaker, Victor wasn’t too sure of his success as a college student considering his command over the English language; however, Victor knew his transition to Livingstone College, was a window.  He believed, “Do the best you can and God will do the rest.”
As a student at Livingstone, Victor excelled in several capacities. Majoring in Computer Information Systems (CIS), this 3.8 grade-point-average graduate, engaged in several regional and national competitions. Under the leadership of International Affairs Director Earl Brown, Victor along with several cohorts to include his good friend Mulbah Gray of Liberia, represented the countries of Rwanda and Liberia in a Model United Nations competition in Raleigh, North Carolina. There Victor and his team submitted a proposal to competitors whereas he was granted permission to answer questions in French. As a senior, Victor engaged in NASA’s Human Exploration Rover Challenge at the Space and Rocket Center in Huntsville, Alabama with CIS instructor Damein Greatheart and under the instructions of professor Obafemi Balogun and communications project manager Justin Walker, he participated in a class internship with Livingstone College’s Division of Communications and Public Relations, developing the LC Connect App to launch in August 2017.
One of Victor’s greatest experience at Livingstone is when he was a mentor to incoming freshman in the summer Bridge STEM Program. He said, “Working with students as a mentor was absolutely rewarding. It didn’t feel like a job because we enjoyed other through a holistic concept.  Our lessons covered in-class and out-of-class experiences, all to enhance the incoming freshmen’s first-year success.”
Victor aspires to become a software developer and wants the world to know he is a Christian who is living today because of God’s grace and a miraculous window. He affirms, “God is a way maker,” and wants to especially thank President Jenkins, Karen Alexander, Racelle Weiman, Eugenie Mukeshimana, Liliane Ntabana, Shelly Hill Crawford, Dan Crawford, Betty Grace and Tom Wolpert for allowing God’s love to shine through their windows.

2017 UNCF Walton Summer Fellows

As school systems near the end of an academic year, parents often contemplate summer activities both academic and/or leisure to keep their children engaged. Two Livingstone College student-leaders await these vibrant youth as they are preparing for the 2017 summer and beyond. Senior, elementary education major Jenna Wright of Salisbury, MD and senior social work major Terrell Richardson of Wilmington, NC are engaging in summer educational opportunities that will last them a lifetime.

The Walton-United Negro College Fund K-12 Education Fellowship is a leadership and talent development initiative aimed to build a robust pipeline of high-achieving African Americans engaged in education reform in America. The program selects undergraduate juniors from UNCF member historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) to participate in leadership development and paid intern placement programs that partners with innovative K-12 educational reform enterprises. Livingstone is proud of its two students whose applications garnered them selection. 2017 Jenna Wright UNCF

Jenna Wright, Miss Senior 2017-2018, has placement with the Children’s Defense Fund Freedom Schools Partner, Chicago Collegiate Charter School in Chicago, Illinois. As an Operations Intern, Jenna will manage student recruitment and enrollment while in residence at the University of Illinois at Chicago. Jenna is excited! She said, “I expect to gain greater knowledge of educational reform procedures since education policies and practices are ever changing and I want to improve my networking skills and experience in working with people from various socioeconomic backgrounds.”

Terrell Richardson, the 2017-2018 Student Government Association President will spend his summer at the central office of Friendship Charter Public School in Washington, DC as a Summer Associate in the Office of Extended Learning. There his duties include governance of academic and enrichment programs for ten campuses and he will work collaboratively with a team to implement a summer capstone project. When asked about his acceptance to the program, Terrell said, “Being accepted is a huge honor. This program serves a dual purpose because it helps to prepare me to become a solid leader and gives me the opportunity to serve others. Dr. Jenkins stresses “Education is the surest vehicle to upward mobility.” So, I recognize the importance of an opportunity as this and I will do my best to learn as much as I can from it.”

All Walton Fellows will convene in Washington, DC May 30 – June 4 for a student-leadership conference at the Kellogg Hotel and Conference Center and then disperse to their various sites from June 5 – July 27. Their experience will include education case competition, career coaching and alumni and networking opportunities. UNCF financially supports all Walton Fellows.

Audrey Cunningham – Salisbury City’s First Black Female Detective

SALISBURY — In 1973, Audrey Smith had graduated from Livingstone College with a degree in sociology destined to be a social worker, but that dream of helping Rowan County families didn’t quite materialize the way she envisioned.

A year after graduation, Smith worked at the Salisbury-Rowan Juvenile Bureau, where she looked into child cases, sort of a department of social services division. When the bureau disbanded, Smith and fellow bureau member Charlie Herion moved to the Salisbury Police Department and John Noble, another member, went to the Rowan County Sheriff’s Office.

Smith automatically became a Salisbury Police investigator. The 26-year-old not only was an investigator, but she was the first black female investigator the department had ever had. There were other black officers before her, including Rayford Graham in the late 1940s, as well as Ernest Davis, and Price Brown in the 1960s and 1970s, but all had been male.

There was even Sarah Chunn, a black meter maid who worked in the early 1960s and 1970s, but none before Smith had ever been a lady cop and definitely not an investigator.

Smith, now Audrey Cunningham, recently reflected on her four years with the police department and what led her back to her alma mater.
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Isenberg Elementary School and Livingstone College sign agreement to teach STEM and prepare students for careers and college

Studies have shown that the number of jobs now available in the United States is directly tied to new achievements in science and engineering. Education leaders believe there are not enough new people entering these field and not enough people in America creating the kinds of technological advances that will create new job opportunities from science and engineering in the future.
Job growth they say, depends on the nation’s ability to graduate students in the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) fields. What appears most alarming to educators is that America is ahead of some poorer nations in STEM and its job creating advances, but is behind most of the more developed nations in the world in these fields.
That is exactly why Isenberg Elementary School Principal Marvin Moore and Livingstone College President Dr. Jimmy Jenkins decided to do what they could to turn this STEM story into one with a better outcome for the community and nation. To do that, the two education leaders agree, exposure to science, math, technology and engineering should begin as early as Kindergarten. It is a good idea, they say, to ready young students with a love for the knowledge in these fields. Minority students too often think lessons in math and science are too hard for them to learn.
The two leaders signed a memorandum of understanding this week which will allow the schools to collaborate in partnership on science, technology, engineering and mathematics with their students. “I don’t want our students to be just consumers of technology,” said Moore. “Somebody created Facebook. Why can’t one or some of our students do the same thing? “We’ve advanced our technology. Consider the old phone installed to a wall in the house to new telephones reinvented to carry with you everywhere. Engineering is developing new ideas, planning it out, creating a model, testing it and improving what you’ve dreamed, “he continued. Math is all around us, so we need to help our students see possibilities and be given an opportunity to grow things, even to fail and improve a product.”
Those concepts are why he asked Dr. Jenkins for a partnership with Livingstone to help make students at Isenberg college-ready. Not just for Livingstone, but anywhere they may want to go. “It could be Carolina, Duke, wherever and they must ingrain that option from kindergarten” Students have to see where they want to go.” School-children can learn of their option to go to college from other college students and that is where students from Livingstone College come into the picture,” Moore explained.
Moore, speaking to a large group of Livingstone students at the signing event, encouraged them to give back to the community by volunteering to help a young person succeed in science, technology, engineering and mathematics. “We don’t want them to be just consumers of technology but creators and producers of technology as well.” STEM education is best embraced when introduced as a primary focus early in the learning process.
Livingstone College has produced a long line of scientists and doctors. Solomon Carter Fuller graduated from Livingstone and completed his medical degree from the Boston University School of Medicine. Solomon Fuller’s contribution to the medical field was his clinical knowledge of Alzheimer’s disease. Fuller completed his post-graduate study at the University Munich and at the Royal Psychiatric Hospital in Munich, Germany. The Solomon Carter Fuller Mental Health Center in Boston is named in honor of his important work.
Dr. James Gavin, another Livingstone College graduate, earned a Ph. D. in medical research and a Medical Degree from Duke University. Gavin is internationally renowned in the field of Juvenile Diabetes. “We desire that our students in the STEM fields are successful. This collaboration with Isenberg Elementary School will benefit students from the College and the elementary school, said Dr. Jenkins. Historically, experts in science, and the medical field in particular are in the DNA at Livingstone College,” Jenkins continued.

A second chance for Brandi Gourdine


Brandi Gourdine’s change in direction is nothing but amazing.

As a senior at Mallard Creek High School in Charlotte three years ago, she had a low grade-point average and saw her friends being accepted into college. Then, the transformation started, and now as a college junior, she has her sights set on medical school.

How did she do it?

As a senior, “I was distracted in the classroom,” Gourdine said. Her baby brother had open heart surgery at three months of age. Her mom was unemployed. “I was also involved in a lot of social activities, like most young people my age.

“I was doing enough to get by, but I was not excelling. It wasn’t because I lacked the smarts; it was my work ethic.”

Then she attended a college fair at her school and learned about the Bridge program at Livingstone College in Salisbury, N.C.

Bridge programs at colleges across the country are designed to help students with academic deficiencies make the transition to a successful college experience. The Livingstone program was started in 2006 by college President Jimmy R. Jenkins Sr. Students go through an intensive, six-week program during the summer focusing on reading, math and writing. In addition to the training, students are encouraged to pursue a degree in STEM – science, technology, engineering or math.

Livingstone is a private college founded in 1879 with 1,300 students and its Bridge program has 102 students majoring in biology, 67 in psychology, 60 in computer information systems and 11 in math.

“The program is offered to late-blooming high-school graduates,” Jenkins said. “It’s intended to help students defy the odds in their college experience and live up to their potential. The program focuses on changing attitudes and behaviors, but also building relationships with those who can help, including instructors and one’s peers.”

I’m grateful for the Bridge program for giving me a second chance. I know I can do the work and be successful.

The Duke Energy Foundation’s most recent contribution to the program was a $50,000 grant in 2016, part of the foundation’s $1.4 million investment in job readiness to 26 education and nonprofit organizations in North Carolina. Economic and workforce development is one of the Duke Energy Foundation’s investment priorities.

“This program is developing the next generation of leaders,” said Shawn Heath, president of the foundation. “We’re pleased to play a role in helping these young adults get on a path of success.”

College begins a new day

That summer three years ago, Gourdine joined 100 others in the Bridge program, including students from California, Texas and New York.

“College can be intimidating,” she said. “Your parents drop you off at school and there are young people there from all over the country.”

Livingstone College President Jimmy R. Jenkins Sr. and Brandi Gourdine.
“We knew that some students on campus were critical of the program; they did not believe we deserved a second chance. But we were hungry for change. We were ready to prove to each other that we weren’t the same students that we were in high school.

“That goal brought us together.”

The program’s director, Sylvester Kyles, served as a wise and steadfast mentor. “Mr. Kyles was upfront and transparent,” Gourdine said. “He let us know that when the school year started, that’s when the real test would begin. The experience challenged us to deal with day-to-day issues.”

A bridge to a successful future

While at Livingstone College, Gourdine has excelled. She was elected president of the freshman class and represented her sophomore class on the school’s governing council.

Students in the Bridge program, she said, “have proven we’re capable academically and can serve as leaders on campus.

“I’m grateful for the Bridge program for giving me a second chance. I know I can do the work and be successful.”

As she begins her junior year, her grade-point average is 3.7, she’s majoring in biology and has her sights set on attending Emory School of Medicine in Atlanta.

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Livingstone names new associate vice president for academic affairs

SALISBURY – When classes resume at Livingstone College in the fall, Dr. Kelli V. Randall will have a lot to smile about.

That’s because Randall, a native of Chicago, has been promoted to associate vice president for academic affairs. She will also continue in her role as dean of the Division of Liberal Arts and Humanities.

“I want to congratulate Dr. Randall for the work she has done here at Livingstone College that has propelled her into this new role,” said Livingstone President Dr. Jimmy R. Jenkins Sr. “I invite the college family to extend congratulations to her and to give her the support she will need to successfully continue her work here at our great institution.”

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Dr. Flowers is awarded $57,744 for STEM Workforce Training Laboratory

Dr. Lawrence Flowers, department chair and associate professor of biology at Livingstone College, will utilize a $57,744 award from the National Science Foundation to establish a STEM Workforce Training Laboratory on campus. The STEM Workforce Training Laboratory will contain state-of-the-art scientific research instrumentation and will be designed to provide real-world laboratory experiences in the areas of bioinformatics, cell biology, forensic science, microbiology and molecular biology to underrepresented students. The STEM Workforce Training Laboratory will employ innovative career training activities that will enrich the science and mathematics education curriculum, strengthen the College’s research infrastructure and improve employment outcomes for current and future Livingstone students. Additionally, the STEM Workforce Training Laboratory will further the efforts of AIM for STEM Careers, a nearly $300,000 project funded by the National Science Foundation for which Dr. Flowers is the principal investigator.

Recently, Dr. Flowers conceptualized and trademarked the term “STEMployable” to denote the requisite attitudes, behaviors, credentials and technical skills that Science, Technology, Engineering and Math graduates must possess to enhance their employability and competitively pursue STEM careers in the 21st Century. “It is imperative that STEM faculty incorporate career development evidence-based practices, career theories and authentic laboratory training experiences in their courses to produce graduates who demonstrate felicitous STEMployable skills,” Dr. Flowers said.

The STEM Workforce Training Laboratory will train students to be proficient in a variety of scientific procedures, including DNA profiling techniques, cell culture methods, gene expression analysis, fluorescence microscopy, small interfering RNA technology, nucleic acid extraction procedures and protein expression analysis. Improving diversity in the STEM workforce is a national mandate. The overarching goals of the STEM Workforce Training Laboratory are to improve students’ extant discipline knowledge and to enhance students’ career preparation experiences by exposing undergraduates to essential laboratory competencies and problem-solving skills important to employers in today’s STEM labor market.