Meta’s Huntsville Data Center announces 2022 Community Action Grants

Huntsville, AL—Meta is thrilled to announce recipients of their 2022 Community Action Grants. Congratulations BDPA Huntsville!

Through their Data Center Community Action Grants program, Meta provides funding for nonprofits and schools to support the long-term vitality of Huntsville. They fund projects that help put the power of technology to use for community benefit, connect people online or off and improve STEM education. Congratulations to the 2022 Huntsville Data Center grant recipients and a big thank you for your impactful work!

BDPA Huntsville FLIGHTS program

2022 Huntsville Data Center Grant Award Recipients

National BDPA Huntsville Chapter / $18,750
To empower the FLIGHTS program to give students real-world career experiences

Drake State Community & Technical College / $15,247
To develop STEM learning opportunities with solar robotics kits and an Arduino Rev3 programmable robot

Huntsville City Schools / $10,000
To support the development of a community STEM garden that connects the community together

100 Black Men of Greater Huntsville, Inc. / $5,000
To help put on STEAM events and programs to inspire young people from diverse communities in Huntsville

Girls Inc. of Huntsville / $15,000
To support Operation Smart program for increasing leadership and improving graduation rates by providing programs for young girls

The Livin’ Room / $17,870
To provide new computers and projectors for trainings at the community center

Northwood Community Outreach / $50,000
To equip community coding classes with technology to improve connection for students and residents

Madison City Schools / $27,000
To provide tablets and enable equitable internet access for students in need

Village of Promise / $42,243
To equip adults with technology for pursuing GEDs, training for jobs and finding employment

Discovery Middle School / $1,000
To support the Greenpower Racing Program for inspiring hands-on problem solvers

CAP & GOWN Project / $15,000
To enable transformative opportunities to pursue college for underserved secondary school students

Data centers are part of the infrastructure that helps us bring WhatsApp, Instagram, Facebook and more to people around the globe. They support Meta’s mission to give people the power to build community and bring the world closer together.

Sources: Meta Platforms, Inc. and BDPA Huntsville


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Earth Day Tech Summit 2022 is a virtual event for students, JROTC Units, and young adults.

New Defense Secretary Arrives at Pentagon, Convenes COVID Meeting

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PENTAGON—Defense Secretary Lloyd J. Austin III arrived at the Pentagon today and hit the ground running, greeting the senior staff and then immediately heading into meetings on combating the coronavirus. The Senate confirmed Austin at 11 a.m.; the vote was 93-2. He arrived at the Pentagon around noon and was “administratively sworn in” soon afterward.

Austin chaired a COVID-19 briefing attended by Deputy Secretary David L. Norquist, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Army Gen. Mark A. Milley, members of the Office of the Secretary of Defense Staff, DOD COVID-19 Coordinator Max Rose, the acting service secretaries, the service military chiefs and combatant commanders. The Senate and the House of Representatives waived the requirement that a defense secretary must have been retired seven years before assuming the position. Austin assured congressional leaders that he fully believes in civilian control of the U.S. military.

During his confirmation hearing before the Senate Armed Services Committee, Austin addressed this issue. “I was a general and a soldier, and I’m proud of that,” he said. “But today, I appear before you as a citizen, the son of a postal worker and a homemaker from Thomasville, Georgia, and I’m proud of that, too. If you confirm me, I am prepared to serve now as a civilian, fully acknowledging the importance of this distinction.” Austin, a 1975 graduate of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, N.Y., retired from the Army as the commander of U.S. Central Command in 2016.

In some of his first acts, Austin is contacting allies and partners around the world to assure them of America’s security commitments. His first call to NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, is proof of the importance Austin places on allies.

Conquering COVID tops the immediate list of missions, but Austin also must configure the department to face China, which he called America’s “pacing threat” in his testimony. He also must consider the actions and strategy of a resurgent Russia. Iran remains a U.S. concern in the Middle East, and U.S. troops are still deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan. North Korea is a wild card in the Indo-Pacific.

Threats from violent extremism remain. Although the physical caliphate of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria has been eliminated, remnants of the group are still dangerous, DOD officials have said. Other groups, which share the toxic ideology, exist in the Middle East, Africa and Asia.

Austin also must keep his eyes on the future, continuing to build a department that has the capabilities needed to deter any foe and, if deterrence fails, to defeat that threat.

Source and photo: Pentagon

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BDPA Members and General Public may select here to pre-register today.

BDPA-DC Receives New Grant from Best Buy Foundation to Support Local Tablets-For-Teens Projects

WASHINGTON—The Best Buy Foundation has approved a grant to BDPA of Greater Washington, D.C. (BDPA-DC) in direct support of the association’s Tablets For Teens program.  Grant reporting and requirements for this next phase provide details on precisely how funds are used to support this rapidly emerging digital divide initiative.

BDPA-DC is supporting the following mission sets with Title-I schools across the National Capital Region collocated within our primary area of responsibility. Direct support includes distribution of free or low-cost computing devices to students and distribution of new cellular wireless hot spots to students with no broadband service at home.

This special grant also assists BDPA student members, students enrolled in National BDPA’s Student I.T. Education and Scholarship (SITES) activities, and local JROTC Cadets attending Title-I schools with new tablet PCs, notebook PCs, mobile hot-spots, or small single-board card-sized computers with accessories.  BDPA Student Members, Cadets, and local high school students may also receive community service hours supporting local BDPA SITES projects, webinars, technology events, and outreach activities with BDPA.

Best Buy has been a committed, valuable and engaged community partner and BDPA-DC enthusiastically looks forward to continuing our local, regional, and national relationships in the future.

BDPA Huntsville’s 2020 SITES Finalists receive new Samsung Galaxy Tab A tablets from the Association’s Tablets For Teens initiative after their technical showcase competitions during National BDPA’s 45th Anniversary and virtual BDPA2020 Annual Conference. Photo © 2020 BDPA Huntsville, AL. BDPA Detroit’s 2020 SITES Finalists are featured on our cover photo.

The association’s global mission as outlined by National BDPA is to bridge digital divides across cyber security, information technology (IT) and telecommunications competency gaps while broadening outreach and awareness campaigns for computer, data science, and technical careers. Since 1978, BDPA-DC’s projects across the National Capital Region support career development and economic development through well blended and tailored series of student programs, industry outreach, community relations, and legislative affairs primarily for urban and underserved communities. Tablets For Teens is another program under the Chapter’s SITES-IV (“Industry 4.0” SITES) portfolio. 

Additional information for the national capital region is provided on the following two landing pages, bdpadc.org or tabletsforteens.org.

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Tablets For Teens • Earth Day Tech Summit 2021 • TabletsForTeens.org

Free and Low Cost Online Cybersecurity Learning Content — Get Started Now

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GAITHERSBURG, MD — During this unusual time in our lives, many of us find we want to improve our knowledge, skills or even prepare for new career opportunities. If you are interested in cybersecurity careers, need to change careers or close technical gaps in your current resume, there are numerous online education providers to choose from. Many online courses are available from your local community college, four-year universities, even the prestigious Centers of Academic Excellence (CAE) programs – please review all options.

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The National Initiative for Cybersecurity Education (NICE) is a partnership between government, academia, and the private sector focused supporting the country’s ability to address current and future cybersecurity education and workforce challenges through standards and best practices. The following links from NICE’s site are not endorsements, but list free and low-cost online educational content on topics such as information technology and cybersecurity. Some, not all, may contribute towards professional learning objectives or lead to industry certifications and online degrees. Please note that their site will continue to be updated as new information is gathered and edited for clarity and accuracy for your family, school, or business.

Name and Hyperlink to your Materials*Description**
CompTIAFree online training for CompTIA IT Fundamentals and other resources.
CLARK Center Plan CFree cybersecurity curriculum that is primarily video-based or provide online assignments that can be easily integrated into a virtual learning environments.
Culture of CybersecurityFree, downloadable kids activities to help your family learn basic cybersecurity concepts and defense strategies.
CybraryFree information technology and cybersecurity training portal.
EC-CouncilFree resources for the information security community in the form of webinars, blogs, online video training, and much more.
ElasticFree on-demand Elastic Stack, observability, and security courses.
Federal Virtual Training Environment (FedVTE)Free online cybersecurity training for federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government employees, federal contractors, and US military veterans.
FortinetFree access to the FortiGate Essentials Training Course and Network Security Expert courses 1 and 2.
IBM (hosted by Coursera)Free (7-day trial) suite of courses on IT Fundamentals for Cybersecurity Specialization.
IBM Security Learning AcademyFree technical training for IBM Security products.
(ISC)2 Webinars and CoursesFree technical webinars and courses to earn Continuing Professional Education (CPEs).
(ISC)2 Utilizing Big DataFree course for (ISC)2 members (low cost for non-members) that provides an overview of Big Data components, architectures and applications.
NICCS Education and Training CatalogDatabase of free and for pay, online and in person courses.
Open P-TECHFree digital learning on the tech skills of tomorrow.
PluralsightFree access to 7,000+ expert-led video courses and more during the month of April.
SANSFree cybersecurity community resources and programs.
SANS Cyber Aces OnlineFree online course that teaches the core concepts needed to assess and protect information security systems.
TestOut’s 2020 K12 GrantFree TestOut courses for K12 teachers. Application process required.
UdemyHeavily discounted online courses for various certifications.

*Materials are related to coding, product training, certification preparation or general IT and cybersecurity skills development, and teacher training and curriculum.
**Some of these materials may only be free or low cost (less than $100) for a limited time.

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For more information on how to add additional information or to correct an error, please email NICE.
   →  nice.nist@nist.gov.

Source:
NICE Program Office
nist.nice@nist.gov
(301) 975-5048
100 Bureau Dr.
Gaithersburg, MD 20899

National BDPA and local BDPA Chapters have broadened outreach to Historically Black Colleges and Universities and Minority Serving Institutions (HBCU/MSI) to include establishing BDPA chapters with HBCU/MSIs, CAE schools, and community colleges already certified by the National Security Agency (NSA) and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) in research (CAE-R), cyber defense (CAE-CD), or cyber operations (CAE-CO).

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BDPA-DC/HOPE Project Tech Partnership initiative is to assist HBCU students and graduates with earning CompTIA technical certifications.  In addition to assisting with technical certification HOPE Project will assist HBCU grads with career coaching and access to our employer network. 

The program is open to any HBCU STEM Major or recent HBCU Stem Graduate.  We anticipate awarding 40 scholarships in 2021.  Candidates can select from any one of the three CompTIA certifications, A+, Network+ or Security+ • Apply now and before January 7th, 2022 with your latest resume by visiting: https://www.hopeprojectonline.com/hbcu

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To launch a new BDPA Chapter on campus, email: info@bdpa.org  today and partner with us during #BDPACon22 in Atlanta, GA August 18-20, 2022.  Visit BDPA.org to discover more . . .

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Start-Ups. Small Businesses. HBCU/MIs.
Take flight from “Grants-to-Contracts!” The United States Air Force plans to grow its venture investment substantially this year. To that end, Air Force, in partnership with National BDPA is providing step by step technology transfer workshops for start-ups, small businesses, and research institutions during this year’s Air Force STTR HBCU Virtual Collider.

STEM Conference honors Army CIO as 2020 Black Engineer of the Year

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WASHINGTON — Lieutenant General Bruce T. Crawford, U.S. Army, who was sworn in as the Army Chief Information Officer (CIO) on Aug. 1. 2017, was awarded the Black Engineer of the Year Award (BEYA) for his outstanding efforts to mentor the next generation of American scientists, technologists, and engineers.

As the Army’s chief information officer and G-6, Lt. Gen. Crawford reports both to the secretary of the Army as CIO, and also to the chief of staff of the Army as G-6.

He sets the strategic direction of the Army network and supervises all command, control, communications, and computers (C4) and Information Technology (IT) functions. He also oversees the Army’s $12.2 billion IT programs, manages enterprise IT architecture, establishes and enforces IT policies, and directs the delivery of C4IT capabilities to support war-fighters and business users.

As the G-6, he advises the Chief of Staff of the Army on the network, communications, signal operations, information security, force structure, and equipping.

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JROTC photo at BEYA2020 courtesy Neal Daniels, Dunbar High School, Washington, D.C.

A native of Columbia, South Carolina, he was commissioned through South Carolina State University’s Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC) program on May 28, 1986, after graduating as a Distinguished Military Graduate with a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering. He also holds a Master of Science in Administration from Central Michigan University and a Master of Science in National Resource Strategy from the Industrial College of the Armed Forces.

ICYMI | bdpatoday 02.15.20During his 33 years of service, LTG Crawford served in leadership positions at the tactical, operational, and strategic levels. In previous assignments, he served as commanding general, U.S. Army Communications-Electronics Command (CECOM), director of C4/Cyber and Chief Information Officer, U.S. European Command (EUCOM), commanding general, 5th Signal Command (Theater); and G-6, U.S. Army Europe in Wiesbaden, Germany.

Each year, the annual BEYA Conference hosts award ceremonies for people who create innovation and inspiration, opening up opportunities for careers in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) fields. Black Engineer of the Year awards are made based upon peer-reviews of hundreds of nominations submitted by organizations and employers across the country.

— Sources, photos, and original articles: blackengineer.com and bdpatoday

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Select here for BDPA2020 engagements!

HSCC Season Opens with HBCU Festival and Auto Show

Discover new cyber and technical careers in Air and Space.

WASHINGTON—This week, Industry welcomed the ‘Class of 2024’ to a new decade of unlimited opportunities to explore technical and innovative careers. The National Capital Region hosted the 18th annual HBCU Festival, The Washington Auto Show®, and the annual High School Coding Competition (HSCC) season opener.

hscc19-team_commentsThe HSCC kick-off was powered by America’s 2019 National Coding Champions, BDPA of Greater Washington, D.C. (BDPAdc.org). Their journey to BDPACon20 in Atlanta is underway, as a new decade brings with it increased regional participation welcoming JROTC units, HSCC teams from Baltimore, the District, Northern Virginia, and Central Maryland, and new collegiate chapters.

hbcufest_asbc2020aIndustry’s Historically Black College and University (HBCU) pipelines continue to grow with inclusive programs, impact investments, and support for annual HBCU Festivals. The Alfred Street Baptist Church Foundation (ASBC) hosted their 18th Annual Historically Black Colleges and Universities College Festival at the Gaylord National Resort Convention Center this Saturday where scholarships and acceptance letters were awarded on site during the festival!

The annual Festival is dedicated to connecting high school students and parents to HBCUs, while helping more students enter college to ensure HBCUs meet enrollment goals.  Since 2003, the Festival has connected more than 35,000 students and parents to academic institutions. Many students are first-generation college students, and in some cases, institutions participating in the Festival are the only available choices for these budding scholars.

ASBC HBCU Festival 2020

The Washington Auto Show®, a world class event, continues to wow audiences this week with its cutting-edge exhibits, latest model cars and displays of historic vehicles. Opening January 24 this year, the Auto Show will continue to emphasize and showcase the latest innovations in sustainable automotive technologies. As the largest show in Washington, D.C., their “Public Policy Show” features special events and announcements for officials in government, industry and the media.

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Students and BDPA Student Members interested in automotive careers, modeling and simulation, gamification (gaming), and next generation infrastructure opportunities are invited to participate in this year’s Earth Day Tech Summit next April co-hosted by National BDPA’s Greater Washington, D.C. Chapter (BDPAdc.org).

Source and photos BDPAdc

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BDPA2020 | Select here to pre-register for BDPACon20

 

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