Thursday, May 28, 2009

Congressman Allen Boyd Visits FAMU’s Center for Plasma Science and Technology

Congressman Allen Boyd toured Florida A&M University’s Center for Plasma Science and Technology in Innovation Park to talk to FAMU researchers to learn more about the federally funded and defense related research that FAMU is conducting. FAMU President James H. Ammons and Larry Robinson, FAMU’s vice president for Research, accompanied Boyd.

During the tour, Congressman Boyd visited the modern fluid physics and the laser remote sensory laboratories. He also had the opportunity to learn more about FAMU research for the U.S. Army and FAMU’s Spheromak Turbulent Plasma Experiment.

FAMU researchers are developing stronger lightweight materials that may be used by the U.S. Army in its development of future combat systems. These materials could cost less to produce, manufacture quicker and maximize soldier protection. Researchers are also working to develop a new generation of laser and sensor technologies that can be used on the battlefield to determine potential threats from long-range distances.

Researchers at CePaST also discussed that our national security is in jeopardy unless we develop new energy sources. The planet is at risk of CO2 suffocation unless we discover clean energy alternatives, which is the focus of a new research project at FAMU.

FAMU faculty and students are now positioned to lead with innovations into a 22nd century of worry free electricity. A spheromak uses magnets to squeeze plasma and produce fusion much like the more expensive and government utilized tokamaks. Fusion leaves no carbon footprints behind and is a pollution-free source of energy.

“FAMU is now funded at $1 million to design and begin a vigorous pursuit of a fusion facility,” said FAMU Physics Professor Joseph Johnson, Ph.D.

According to Johnson, FAMU would need an additional funding of $5 million for the second year (2010), and $5 million for the third year (2011). FAMU will collaborate with West Virginia University and Auburn University on this project. This research will provide new career and research opportunities for students, along with models for the development of expanded job opportunities throughout the nation.

According to Congressman Boyd, the Congressional earmarks are different now.

“The money is not there the way it used to be,” said Boyd.

President Ammons thanked Congressman Boyd for his support.

“We are very appreciative for Congressman Boyd’s relentless support for Florida A&M University,” said Ammons. “We will continue to do our part to secure more grant opportunities for FAMU to make sure FAMU remains a leader in research.”

Photo caption: Delonia Wiggins, a Florida A&M University Ph.D. physics candidate, (left) and Joseph Johnson, Ph.D., a distinguished professor of science and engineering and physics, (far right) gives a demonstration for Congressman Allen Boyd in the modern fluid physics lab during his tour of the FAMU Center for Plasma Science and Technology in Innovation Park.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

FAMU Will Celebrate College Colors Day

Florida A&M University (FAMU) will be celebrating College Colors Day on Friday, September 4.

FAMU is encouraging the administration, faculty, staff, students, alumni and fans around the nation to wear licensed FAMU apparel throughout the day on September 4.

College Colors Day will coincide with the kick-off of the new school year and FAMU's first home football game, scheduled for Saturday, September 5, against Delaware State University.

College Colors Day is organized by the Collegiate Licensing Company (CLC) and its consortium of colleges and universities.

For more information on College Colors Day contact Sabrina Thompson in the Office of Communications at (850) 599-3413 or visit

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

FAMU Hosts Rattler Reunion Weekend

Florida A&M University (FAMU) will host Rattler Reunion Weekend 2009 June 4 through June 7.

This year’s theme is “A Generation of Legends, a Generation of Champions.” The Class of 1959 and classes ending in four and nine will be honored. There will also be a reunion fundraising campaign for each of these class years.

Activities for the week include a champagne welcome reception, the Rattler Tee-Off golf tournament, the Rattler Reunion step show and the Distinguished Alumni Gala.

The following individuals will be honored at the Distinguished Alumni Gala:
  • Business - Arnett Cornelius Greene
  • Community Service - Robert B. Hayling, Ph.D.
  • Community Service - Carolyn J. Ryals, Ed.D.
  • Education - Lawrence Woodard, Sr., Ed.D.
  • Government – The Honorable Mia L. Jones
  • Government - Clinton D. McGill
  • Military - Major General (Ret.) Alvin Bryant, M.D., United States Army
  • Lifetime Achievement Award - *Chief Master Sergeant (Ret.) Louis Williams, United States Air Force
  • Lifetime Achievement Award - *Coach Earl Samuel “Pop Kitch” Kitchings
  • Lifetime Achievement Award - *Roy Livingston Rolle, Sr.
  • Lifetime Achievement Award - *Nat Adderley
  • Lifetime Achievement Award - Sybil Collins Mobley, Ph.D.

For more information on Rattler Reunion, call (850) 599-3861 or visit

FAMU hosts 1890 Student Firefighter Training Program

Florida A&M University (FAMU) is the host site for a basic firefighting training session for students from nine 1890 land-grant universities. The session ends on Friday, May 29. Sponsored by the National Forests in Florida (Southern Region), this training program is funded through a grant from the National Fire Diversity Committee (NFDC).

The purpose of the 1890 Student Fire Fighting Program is to increase minority student awareness of fire management and to provide opportunities for interested students to get first-hand experience in wildland/prescribed fire management. The program encourages students to consider a career in fire management or a related natural resource management discipline. This is the fourth year of implementation for this program.

Upon completion of the training, students are assigned to various ranger districts throughout the Southern Region. Over the past 4 years, the 1890 Student Firefighting Training Program has trained 15 students for summer employment at various fire units throughout the forest service. The program directly enhances the workforce by preparing trained personnel to successfully counter the costly damages associated with forest fires throughout the country.

“I enjoy working with these students and providing them with the unique opportunity to be exposed to fire management,” said Ted Willis, forest service liaison at FAMU, who recruited students and coordinates the training program. “I want to thank the Forest Supervisor and Fire Management Officer of the National Forests in Florida as well as the Jackson Hotshots for their support.”

This year students from the following 1890 institutions are participating in the training: Alabama A&M University; Alcorn University; Fort Valley State University, Langston University; Prairie View A&M University; Southern A&M University; and Tuskegee University. The 1890 universities are land-grant institutions designated to receive benefits of the Morrill Act of 1890 to promote liberal and practical education. Florida A&M University is the 1890 institution for Florida. For more information, please contact Ted Willis at (850) 412-7383 or by email at

Friday, May 22, 2009


Watch clips from the 9 a.m. spring 2009 commencement ceremony on Sunday, May 24 on the CBS Evening News with Russ Mitchell at 6 p.m. ET on WCTV-TV.

Friday, May 15, 2009

FAMU Research in Physics Hopes to Uncover New Energy Source

According to science researchers at Florida A&M University's Center for Plasma Science and Technology (CePaST) in Innovation Park, our national security is in jeopardy unless we develop new energy sources. The planet is at risk of CO2 suffocation unless we discover clean energy alternatives, which is the focus of a new research project at FAMU.

“Fusion from nuclear collisions is now recognized as one of the best overall long term options,” according to FAMU Physics Professor Joseph Johnson, Ph.D. “FAMU is now funded at $1 million to design and begin a vigorous pursuit of a fusion facility.”

According to Johnson, this “Congressional Direction” comes from the U. S. Department of Energy through Congress.

Congressman Kendrick Meek was instrumental in this acquisition for FAMU’s research enterprise. FAMU anticipates additional funding of $5 million the second year (2010), and $5 million the third year (2011).

With the FAMU Spheromak Turbulent Plasma Experiment (STPX), FAMU faculty and students are now positioned to lead with innovations into a 22nd century of worry free electricity. A spheromak uses magnets to squeeze plasma and produce fusion much like the more expensive and government utilized tokamaks. Fusion leaves no carbon footprints behind and is a pollution-free source of energy.

New scientific discoveries need to be made so that fusion power plants can be built on a manageable scale. The three-year STPX project is a first step on this path, which will immediately focus the nation’s, and the world’s attention on FAMU, Tallahassee, and Florida as important new global players.

FAMU will collaborate with West Virginia University and Auburn University. This research will provide new career and research opportunities for students, along with models for the development of expanded job opportunities throughout the nation.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

FAMU Professor Recognized for Innovative Cancer Research

Florida A&M University (FAMU) associate professor and chair of the Department of Social Work, Merlin R. Langley, Ph.D., has been recognized as a 2009 AACR Minority-Serving Institution (MSI) Faculty Scholars in Cancer Research by the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) for his innovative research in the area of prostate cancer prevention.

Langley’s research involved examining social and behavioral factors that influence the behavior of African-American males related to prostate cancer screening. In particular, Langley studied the role of how masculinity internalized by African-American males affect their experience of stress and behavior related to medical procedures – blood test and digital rectum exam – associated with prostate cancer screening.

To date, there is a scarcity of research examining the relationship between masculinity-related stress and prostate cancer screening behavior among African-American males. Langley’s research addresses such a void and contributes to the dialogue concerning psychosocial factors that influence prostate cancer screening behavior. It is also significant because African-American males have the highest incident and mortality rate of prostate cancer in the world.

The AACR-MSI Faculty Scholar in Cancer Research Awards are presented annually by the AACR to scientists who are engaged in meritorious basic, clinical, translational or epidemiological cancer research.

“I am very honored to be recognized for my research in the area of prostate cancer prevention in general and prostate cancer screening in particular,” Langley said. “The AACR is the world recognized authority in cancer research and for them to recognize me means that I am doing something worthwhile that can potentially contribute to saving the lives of African-American males.”

As a winner of this award, Langley was granted membership in the prestigious organization and awarded $1,800 to attend and present his research at the 2009 AACR 100th Annual Meeting in Denver, Colorado.

Langley has expanded his research program to the area of cancer survivorship. He is interested in examining factors that influence the quality of life of prostate cancer survivors and their intimate relationships with significant others. He is working on a research proposal in the above area for funding the by National Institutes of Health (NIH).

FAMU Grad to Intern with Army Corps of Engineers

Daniel Francois, a graduate of the spring class of 2009 from the Florida A&M University (FAMU) College of Engineering Sciences, Technology and Agriculture (CESTA), will participate in a two-year internship with the Army Corps of Engineers in Wiesbaden, Germany.

According to Francois, he was in the right place at the right time. He attended the Black Engineers of the Year Award Conference in February in Baltimore, Md., where the Army Corps of Engineers was seeking senior engineering majors interested in obtaining internships after graduation. The internship will provide participants with extensive hands-on experience in architecture and construction, and mechanical and electrical engineering. Upon successfully completing the internship, he will be offered a civilian position with the Army Corp of Engineers in either the European division or in the United States.

During his collegiate career, he appreciated the training he received at FAMU.

“I was very impressed by the faculty, especially Professor Leon Prosper who thoroughly prepared his students for the professional world through his course requirements that included weekly presentations,” he said.

Already planning for his future, Francois aspires to continue his education. He feels that the engineering field offers immeasurable opportunities to young people who seek to build a rewarding career. In the next 10 years, Francois plans to have earned his master’s degree and work toward earning his doctorate degree.

Photo caption: Daniel Francois (center), FAMU electronic engineering technology graduate from Fort Pierce, Fla. at the CESTA Spring Graduates Reception with Carolyn Collins, Ph.D. (left), former president of the FAMU National Alumni Association and CESTA alumna; and Makola Abdullah, Ph.D. (right), dean and director, FAMU College of Engineering Sciences, Technology and Agriculture.

Monday, May 11, 2009

FAMU Master’s Candidate to Intern at the White House

This summer, Florida A&M University (FAMU) student Andrea Turk will serve as an intern at the White House for the Department of Management and Administrative Services.

“This internship will provide valuable and relevant work experience, validity and an enhanced exclamation point to my resume,” Turk said. “I will have the opportunity to represent historically black colleges and universities (HBCU), and show the nation that FAMU and other HBCUs produce top-tier students. I want to show that FAMU produces individuals that have the potential to affect and implement effective policies on local, state, and national levels of government.

Turk is a master’s of applied social science with a concentration in public administration student from Gainesville, Fla. She is expecting to graduate during the August 2009 summer commencement ceremony.

Andrea Turk first came to FAMU in 1987 as a student in the School of Business and Industry. Unfortunately, after five years of school, her lack of passion for the curriculum left her with a 1.9 GPA and no desire to remain in school.

After obtaining employment as a finance and accounting director with the State of Florida and earning close to $55,000 a year, without a degree, Turk decided to return to FAMU with a new major and a determination to finish her college education.

“One of the things I admire most about FAMU is the great mix of professors at FAMU,” she said. “There are professors from their 20s to their 70s in age, and professors from all kinds of racial and ethnic backgrounds. This brings a wealth of knowledge from all types of personal and professional perspectives.”

Upon the completion of a bachelor’s degree in political science with a minor in public administration, she decided to keep her educational momentum going and work toward her master’s degree.

After applying for the summer internship at the White House, Turk was personally called by the director of the Department of Management and Administrative Services. According to Turk, an internship team of professionals went through the packets that were submitted and pulled information from the applicants that were best suited for the different White House internship offerings. During her initial phone interview, Turk was told that her packet was hand delivered to the director of the Department of Management and Administrative Services.

The Department of Management and Administrative Services is responsible for communications, correspondences, reference checks, and security checks for White House employees as well as those persons calling, entering and leaving the White House for business or personal reasons.

After graduating, Turk would like to work as an administrator in the public sector or as a college professor teaching public administration.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

FAMU Cuts Ribbon for its Animal Healthcare Facility

Florida A&M University (FAMU) hosted a ribbon-cutting ceremony for its new Animal Healthcare Complex, which will support the veterinary technology program starting this fall.

“The best is yet to come,” said FAMU President James H. Ammons. “African Americans represent only 1.9 percent of the veterinary medicine profession. The total representation of minorities in the profession is 7.7 percent. This new animal healthcare facility will impact FAMU’s ability to help address a critical nation shortage of minorities in the field of veterinary medicine, and related disciplines.”

FAMU will become one of only 11 other major universities in the nation that will offer a four-year degree in veterinary technology, and it will be the only institution in the country with a program that places emphasis on regulatory education and training. The first classes in the new discipline will begin in the fall 2008.

According to Makola Abdullah, Ph.D., dean of the College of Engineering Sciences, Technology and Agriculture (CESTA), the new facility will further FAMU and CESTA in its mission as an 1890 land-grant institution.

P.S. Benepal, Ph.D., director for multicultural services and educational resources development for the United States Department of Agriculture, echoed Abdullah’s sentiments.

“FAMU has made very effective use of land-grant funds with the development of state-of-the-art facilities,” he said.

According to Benepal, since 1983, FAMU has received approximately $12.1 million from the facility grant program as an 1890 land-grant institution.

Charles H. Bronson, commissioner of agriculture for the State of Florida, said the future of the United States depends on facilities like the Animal Healthcare Complex.

“The development of facilities like this one shows FAMU’s commitment to producing the safest food supply in to country,” he said.

Jocelyn Martin, a graduate of CESTA’s animal science program and a spring 2009 candidate for a doctorate in veterinary medicine at Tuskegee University, was also on-hand for the ribbon-cutting ceremony.

“I am definitely proud to be a Rattler from CESTA,” she said. “I just left FAMU in 2005, and to see it expand so much since then, especially in my area of study, is just wonderful.”

The plans for the new multi-functional complex are designed to enhance instructional delivery and learning of students enrolled in the various animal science academic options in the FAMU College of Engineering Sciences, Technology and Agriculture. The educational and experiential training of the program will encompass vital aspects of food safety and biosecurity through the most up-to-date instructional, research, teaching, and service programs. The facility will also aid in maintaining proper herd health measures required by the Animal Welfare Act for those animals currently residing at the FAMU Research and Extension Center.

Funding was appropriated for the new facility through grants from the United States Department of Agriculture Animal Plant Health Inspection Service and the Cooperative State Research, Education and Extension Service (CSREES). The state-of-the-art complex will house an animal science clinical laboratory, research facilities, upgraded technology and conference center, and custom designed small ruminant and cattle facilities. Academic, research and extension educational activities will take place interchangeably at the facility.

One component of the complex includes a fully functional surgery suite with Polycom capability to allow students to view and participate in surgical procedures while simultaneously broadcasting the live surgical procedures through internet/electronic transfer to other institutions around the world.

This facility will be very important in the successful training of students enrolled in the veterinary technology program, which will be offered by the University for the first time in the fall 2008. Students will be exposed to laboratory and field experiences, as well as hands-on instruction that are necessary to prepare for professional careers in veterinary medicine and related career paths. The animal health facility will impact the university’s ability to help address a critical nation shortage of minorities in the field of veterinary medicine, and related disciplines.

Photo caption: (From left to right) FAMU President James H. Ammons, Thomas E. Peterson, DVM, extension veterinarian, Cooperative Extension Program, and Ray Mobley, DVM, director of the Cooperative Extension Program, discuss the surgery suite at the animal healthcare facility.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Former President Bill Clinton Tells FAMU Graduates You are the How Generation

As early as 6:30 a.m., friends and family of Florida A&M University (FAMU) graduates and members of the community were lined up in front of the new Multipurpose Center Teaching Gymnasium in anticipation of the first session of the spring 2009 commencement.

Every seat in the new facility began to fill as the processional began and students from the FAMU College of Arts and Sciences, College of Law, School of Architecture and Environmental Sciences Institute marched to their seats.

The audience roared in excitement as the students, who were ready to transcend to graduates, entered the building, and even more when former United States President Bill Clinton appeared with FAMU President James H. Ammons

The Honorable Allen Boyd, District 2, U.S. Congress; Alfred Lawson, District 6, Florida Senate; and Daryl Parks, member of the FAMU Board of Trustees, were on hand to deliver greetings.

Boyd told graduates that today’s society is something different from that of their parents and grandparents, and left them with two thoughts for the day.

“Don’t forget that you did not get here by yourself and continue to be on constant pursuit of that which will make you and those around you happy in life,” he said.

Lawson congratulated the graduates and reminded them that it was their hard work and dedication that brought them so far.

Parks explained to the graduates that they will now have a new responsibility as alumni.

“FAMU has a great story to tell, and it is through you going into the workforce and excelling that we are able to tell that story,” he said.

After an introduction by Ammons, Clinton told the crowded gym that he was glad to be here to christen the new facility and explained the reasons why he wanted to be at the FAMU spring 2009 commencement.

Clinton mentioned some of FAMU’s most recent accolades: students in the School of Business and Industry (SBI) winning national student case competitions, pharmacy and public health students with a 100 percent pass rate on licensure exams and 1/3 of African-American physicists graduate from FAMU.

“FAMU is the top producers of African Americans with baccalaureate degrees in the nation,” he said. “This makes for one of the most diverse student bodies and modern educational opportunities.”

Clinton went on to explain that the world today is one based on interdependence. According to him, this interdependent world has three significant issues that FAMU graduates must address: unequal opportunities to access healthcare; instability; and unsustainable.

“The world is interdependent in good and bad ways,” Clinton said. “We have to do what we can so that our children and grandchildren will stand a chance in this world.”

According to Clinton, we must strive to build a world where our common humanity matters more than petty differences.

“The world is full of people that can talk about a problem, but we have a shortage of people that can do something about it,” he said. “Your generation must be the doers. You are the ‘how’ generation. How are you going to make a difference?”

Following his keynote address, Ammons awarded Clinton with the President’s Award for serving as keynote speaker for commencement. Clinton was also presented with an honorary Doctorate of Humane Letter.

Following the presentations, Clinton explained to the audience why he was “worthy” of such an honor.

“Dr. Ammons wanted to make sure that I had the cultural experience necessary to receive this honorary doctorate from FAMU,” he said.

Raising his hand and gesturing to the thousands in the audience, Clinton boldly said, “Rattlers will always strike, strike and strike again!”

PHOTO CAPTION: FAMU President James H. Ammons presents former President Bill Clinton with the President's Award for serving as commencement speaker.

Friday, May 1, 2009

FAMU Spring 2009 Grads Overcome Adversity

Florida A&M University (FAMU) College of Law student Soeurette Michel fled her native home of Haiti after her father’s assassination.

Ruth Korie, FAMU social work master’s student, moved to the United States from her home in Nigeria but was abandoned by her husband and left to raise her five children in an unfamiliar place.

What do these women have in common? They overcame tremendous obstacles and adversity to be successful. They will graduate at the 2009 FAMU spring commencement on May 3.

Something Michel knew she was “destined” for.

“I never considered my time in the U.S. difficult because I kept my eyes on the prize,” she said. “When I moved here, I knew exactly what I wanted to do and where I wanted to be.”

After the assassination of her father in 1990, Michel, 36, was urged by her family to leave her home of Haiti and migrate to Florida, in 2001.

Now, after eight years, Michel has earned her associate of science, bachelor of science, and master of science degrees and will obtain the juris doctorate degree on May 3, at the FAMU spring 2009 commencement.

As a young girl in the United States, Michel learned to speak English by reading children’s books and watching American cartoons. She eventually tested well enough in her understanding of the language to enroll at the community college level.

“Gosh it has been challenging,” she exclaimed. “When I finally started school it was a nightmare. One day my mother suggested that I read children books. I believed my first semester I almost had perfect scores in reading, writing, and speech.”

Michel attended Haiti State University, and the University of Central Florida for her undergraduate degree legal studies, certification of juvenile justice leadership and master’s of sciences in criminal justice.

Michel, an avid server to the community, has served as Student Bar Association Community Service Chair with the FAMU College of Law. She also founded and is the current president of the College of Law's Caribbean Law Students Association.

Michel plans on taking the bar exam in July and will enroll as a master’s of law student at St. Thomas University, Miami, Fla., in the fall.

Like Michel, Ruth found herself in a new home and alone, but made the decision to transform hope into reality.

After leaving their home in Nigeria and settling in Tallahassee, Fla., Korie was promised by her ex-husband that she would be able to start college after giving birth to five children. After having her fifth child, her first born was in second-grade, and she still had not enrolled at a college or university.

“People would tell me to wake up,” Korie said. “My ex-husband would say things like, ‘We’ve been in the U.S. for 10 years and you have no education. What do you think you’re going to do without an education?’ But I just tried to stay hopeful.”

Korie woke up one morning, four months after the birth of her fifth child, and her ex-husband was gone. He had relocated to Spain, where it was almost impossible to track his whereabouts.

“My major focus was my children,” Korie said. “I did not want them to miss out on school or become psychologically and emotionally distressed from growing up without a father. So I made sure I was there for them as much as possible.”

Korie eventually attended Tallahassee Community College and was admitted to the FAMU School of Nursing. Soon after, she decided the course load was too rigorous for her family life. She transferred to the FAMU College of Arts and Sciences, Department of Social Work, where she earned her bachelor’s of science in social work at FAMU.

Ironically, while Korie was in her last year as a master’s student, her son was in his first year in the School of Business and Industry.

“With the help of God, I am able to say sometimes that I have amazed myself,” she exclaimed. “I wanted to make sure my children did not fall into the cracks in society. I made a way to be successful. The most difficult aspect of my journey was the financial support, but I made it. I did it.”

Korie is now a qualified counselor and mentor for single parents and plans on one day starting her own child welfare agency.

Spring 2009 Commencement Marks First Time the Ph.D. in Physical Therapy and PharmD/Ph.D. Awarded at FAMU

The inaugural class of Florida A&M University (FAMU) doctor of physical therapy graduates will transition from student to alumnus on May 3, at the FAMU spring commencement.

This commencement will also mark the first time FAMU has awarded the PharmD/Ph.D. degree.

Nkechinyere Ichit, who will be the recipient of the PharmD/Ph.D, decided to go for the duel-degree so she could standout in the crowd.

“I wanted to do more than fill prescriptions,” she said. “With this degree I can teach and I can research. That is my passion.”

Ichit added that working with such an ethnically diverse group of students and faculty provided her with a new perspective on the pharmacy industry and made her experience at FAMU that much more special.

The PharmD is the only pharmacy degree that leads to licensure as a pharmacist in the Untied States. The Ph.D. is a research-focused degree that permits graduates to conduct research in academic, industrial and governmental laboratories. The doctor of philosophy is a degree in pharmaceutical sciences with concentrations in pharmacology/toxicology, medicinal chemistry, pharmaceutics and environmental toxicology.

Ichite was able to complete the program in eight years.

Ichite will join 14 other students in a FAMU first during the spring 2009 commencement, the inaugural class of doctor of physical therapy graduates.

According to Eric Toran, director of the Division of Physical Therapy, FAMU received clearance from the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE) in October 2008 to offer the doctor of physical therapy program, and permission from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS) in December 2008.

“Our program is probably the most culturally diverse program around,” Toran said. “We have a program that gives students the opportunity not only to be the consumer of research, but to be an actual contributor of research.”

The 14 doctor of physical therapy graduates are:
• Marilou Fequiere
• Teneisha Jackson
• Trivia W. Richardson
• Hua Liang
• Latifat Omotayo Oladipo
• Farha Parker
• Jamila Carter
• Aimee McLendon
• Amyre Crocket
• Tynik Fox
• Mario Anderson
• Guyron Mills
• Stacy Heard, Jr

Crockett, a Louisiana State University graduate, was excited about attending a
historically black university and was proud of her decision.

“This was the school that chose me,” she said. “I found that the closeness between my colleagues and professor established a great foundation. We took care of each other and throughout my matriculation they were my family. I don’t think I could have gotten that type of experience anywhere else.”

Improved FCAT Writing Scores at FAMU-DRS are a Good Indicator for Success

Students at Florida A&M University Developmental Research School (FAMU-DRS) scored significantly higher on the writing portion of the Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test (FCAT) than last year.

Approximately 81 percent of students passed the writing portion of the test compared to the 64 percent from last year.

“We have placed a lot of energy and efforts in ensuring that all our students become proficient or perform above grade level for each portion of the FACT,” said Ronald Holmes, Ph.D., superintendent of FAMU-DRS. “We are hoping that the writing results will have a positive impact on our overall FCAT scores. I can’t really say how much weight it will have at this time, but I can say that it is a good indicator for success in the other areas.”

About 69 percent of fourth-graders scored a 3.5, the passing score, or higher compared to last year’s 40 percent. Last year, 92 percent of eighth-graders scored a 3.5 or higher compared to last year’s 81. Approximately 84 percent of 10th graders scored a 3.5 or higher compared to last year’s 73 percent.

According to Holmes, to prepare for the FCAT, FAMU-DRS made it an expectation for students to attend reading, writing, math and science after-school academies. In addition to the after-school academies, students were encouraged to attend school on Saturdays to be fully prepared for the writing portion of the test.

These efforts are also part of the FAMU-DRS three-year plan to become a National School of Excellence or a Blue Ribbon School.

FAMU-DRS will receive the scores for reading, mathematics and science in approximately four to six weeks.