Thursday, October 20, 2011
“Be the best that you can be,” he stressed to them. “Be excited about life and all of its opportunities.”
Pitts served as keynote speaker during the event, which was also an official welcome for the inaugural CBS Harold Dow Visiting Professor Benjamin Davis. Davis is a two-time Columbia-Alfred du Pont award winner who has 30 years of experience working for major broadcast companies such as NBC Universal, ABC, CBS, Fox and National Public Radio.
The position was named after long-time CBS News Correspondent Harold Dow, who died in August 2010.
Davis described the position that bears Dow’s name as standing in a giant’s footprint because of the legacy that Dow left on the field of journalism.
“FAMU is the mother load of students looking for success,” said Davis. “At the end of the day, I hope to help produce good journalists. I have to imagine what Harold Dow would expect and then I push (the students) a little further. He has a giant’s footprint.”
CBS officials announced last year they would donate funds to support hiring a visiting professor as part of their diversity initiative and as a tribute to Dow.
“Harold was my friend and mentor,” said Susan Zirinsky, executive producer for CBS 48 hours and Dow’s former supervisor. “There wasn’t a single story that he didn’t see the merit. It was more than losing a colleague — it was losing a member of the CBS family.”
FAMU President James H. Ammons said he was grateful to CBS for investing in the university.
“CBS wouldn’t put this professorship anywhere,” he said during the luncheon. “They put it at Florida A&M University because of its tradition of academic excellence. The students at the
School of Journalism and Graphic Communication are indeed fortunate. We have somebody special. We got it right.”
Dow’s widow, Kathy Dow, also attended the luncheon. She gave the students advice that she felt her late-husband would give.
“Always remember to dream big,” she said with tears in her eyes. “Be disciplined; be determined.”
The E. Earle Zehmer Worker’s Compensation National Moot Court Competition is widely known for its complex issues and concepts designed to immerse the student in worker’s compensation law. Schools represented at the competition included Stetson University College of Law, Florida Coastal School of Law and the University of Florida Levin College of Law.
“I’m glad we competed as well as we did,” said Dortch, who also serves as chair of the College of Law Advocacy Board. “This was definitely another step in the right direction. We’re progressing; however, we need to continue to the point where we are winning entire competitions.”
Although finishing second place in a national moot court competition is an enormous achievement, both Dortch and Popoola are no strangers to success in moot court competitions. Dortch received the award for Second Best Oral Advocate in the 2010 Appellate Lawyers Association Moot Court Competition, and Popoola was a finalist in the 2009 Navy JAG (Judge Advocate General) National Moot Court Competition.
Second-year law student M. Taylor Tremel and third-year law student Joan Matthews also represented FAMU at the E. Earle Zehmer Worker’s Compensation National Moot Court Competition.
The team, along with its coaches, thanked attorneys J. Michael Matthews, Shawn Diederich, Morgan Indek, D. Paul McCaskill, Monte Shoemaker and Associate Professor Nicky Boothe-Perry for their assistance.
The FAMU College of Law was founded in 1949 on the main campus in Tallahassee. After graduating 57 lawyers, the law school was closed by the state of Florida in 1968. The Florida Legislature voted to reopen the law school in 2000 and Orlando was selected as the location. The re-established FAMU College of Law opened its doors in 2002 and is now housed in a state-of-the-art facility in downtown Orlando’s Parramore neighborhood. The FAMU College of Law received full accreditation from the American Bar Association in July 2009, and has consistently been ranked in the top five for Diversity by U.S. News & World Report since 2007 -- achieving the top rank on three occasions.
Dominique Bradham-Riddy was awarded a Life-Gets-Better Scholarship totaling more than $100,000. This presidential scholarship provides four years of tuition and fees, room, board, books, $500 per semester stipend, internships and a laptop. Bradham-Riddy plans to major in engineering and pre-med. The other students included:
Falilou Barry, business and engineering;
Jainelle Gailard, psychology;
Brittany Williams, science/pre-med; and
Deloris Witcher, science/pre-med
According to Geoffrey Canada, president and CEO of HCZ, this is first time a university has offered scholarships to students at HCZ.
“We have worked with these students since they were in sixth grade to make sure they were academically prepared for college and the high-skills job market,” said HCZ President and CEO Geoffrey Canada. “By offering our students these scholarships, Florida A&M University is knocking down one of the biggest remaining barriers to success for these kids. We are thrilled that the college is giving our kids this opportunity.”
President Ammons said the students at the Harlem Children Zone are talented.
“The students at the Harlem Children Zone are talented and driven,” said Ammons. “Florida A&M University can help them discover who they can become and succeed to their fullest potential.”
The funds for the scholarships come from private donations.
About the Harlem Children Zone
Under the visionary leadership of its President and CEO, Geoffrey Canada, HCZ continues to offer innovative, efficiently run programs that are aimed at doing nothing less than breaking the cycle of generational poverty for the thousands of children and families it serves.
All HCZ programs are offered free to the children and families of Harlem, which is made possible by donations.
“This professorship adds exceptional value to our program,” said the FAMU School of Journalism and Graphic Communication (SJGC) Dean James E. Hawkins. “We’re delighted that Byron Pitts and other representatives of CBS are here to help us launch this partnership.”
In addition to Pitts, other CBS executives expected include:
• Kim Godwin, a CBS Evening News senior producer, outstanding SJGC alumna and member of the SJGC Board of Visitors;
• Crystal Johns, CBS News director of development and diversity; and
• Susan Zirinsky, executive producer for CBS 48 hours and a former supervisor for Harold Dow
Dow was a long-time CBS News correspondent who came to FAMU and spoke to students as part of the Journalism Division’s 35th anniversary in 2009. Dow died unexpectedly in August 2010, and CBS officials announced last year they would donate funds to support hiring a visiting professor as part of their diversity initiative and as a tribute to Dow. His widow, Kathy Dow, is expected to attend the luncheon.
Benjamin Davis, an award-winning broadcast journalist and digital journalism professor, has been hired as the inaugural CBS Harold Dow Visiting Professor at FAMU. Davis, a two-time Columbia-Alfred du Pont award winner, has 30 years of experience working for major broadcast companies such as NBC Universal, ABC, CBS, Fox, and National Public Radio. He also was an adjunct professor at Rutgers University School of Journalism in New Jersey, where he gained nine years of experience teaching courses in broadcast and digital journalism. Davis is an entrepreneur who developed the Digital Media Pyramid writing style and founded Mediafriendly.com, a company that helps major media companies locate diversity experts.
The award will be presented to Burch at the school’s annual Grads are Back Luncheon, Thursday, Oct. 6 at 12:30 p.m. in the SJGC Gallery.
Burch is an award-winning and enterprise writer for the Miami Herald. She has been nominated three times for the prestigious Pulitzer Prize and she was part of a team that published a book on hurricanes.
“We are so proud of Audra’s professional accomplishments,” James Hawkins, SJGC dean, said. “Anyone who knows Audra knows her commitment to journalistic excellence.”
The 1988 graduate currently writes on a range of stories for the Miami Herald. Most recently, she covered the Casey Anthony murder trial and wrote stories on prescriptive drug abuse in Florida.
Burch launched her career at the Post Tribune in Gary, Ind. There she covered police, county government and legal affairs. She then joined the Sun-Sentinel in Fort Lauderdale and was on a two-person team that won several national awards for a series exposing menu fraud at South Florida restaurants.
“The Thelma Thurston Gorham Distinguished Alumnus Award bears the name of FAMU’s first instructor of journalism—Thelma Gorham,” Hawkins said. “The award is given to an alumnus who has excelled professionally and demonstrated a commitment to giving back to the University.”
Burch is a former deputy regional director of the National Association of Black Journalists Association. She chaired the NABJ Region IV conference in 1999 and she is a former president of the Palm Beach chapter. Over the years, she has mentored numerous aspiring journalists and has served as a teacher/coach at several FAMU summer journalism programs.
Orlando, Fla. – Florida A&M University’s (FAMU) College of Law was recently ranked 17th in the nation for providing clinical opportunities by National Jurist magazine, beating out other law schools such as Harvard, University of Kansas, and all Florida law schools. The FAMU College of Law is one of only two historically black colleges or universities (HBCU) to make the list.
“There is a need in Central Florida and around the nation for legal representation for underrepresented populations,” said LeRoy Pernell, FAMU College of Law Dean. “I am pleased that we can be recognized for the opportunities we provide to law students knowing that our efforts impact the surrounding community to a positive end.”
The September issue of the magazine for law students ranked the top 20 American Bar Association (ABA) law schools based on the total number of full-time clinical course positions offered per the number of full-time students. National Jurist used information from the Official Guide to ABA Approved Law Schools, 2011 and 2012 edition to compile the list.
The FAMU College of Law’s Legal Clinic Program is under the direction of Assistant Professor Ann Marie Cavazos and includes Guardian Ad-Litem, Public Defender, Prosecution, Judicial Externship, Homelessness and Legal Advocacy, Death Penalty, Housing and Volunteer Income Tax Assistance and Community and Economic Development. Information sessions are held regularly to inform students of available opportunities. Students participating in the legal clinics have assisted Orlando’s indigent population with numerous court cases, and have been recognized for their winning efforts.
“Consistent with the law school mission to provide legal services to the underrepresented population our primary objective is to create and increase opportunities for law students to get hands-on experience,” said Ann Marie Cavazos, associate professor and director of the FAMU College of Law Legal Clinic. “In a down economy, the poor and underrepresented are faced with myriad of legal issues and employers are looking at law school clinics to teach students practical skills and professionalism, so they can hit the ground running.”
During the 2010-2011 academic year, three College of Law students participating as legal interns worked with Jim Kallinger, former Florida Chief Child Advocate with the Governor's Office of Adoption and Child Protection, to compose a proposed bill that would require parents of children in state custody to pay child support to the State of Florida, if it were to become law. Additionally, students participating in the Housing Clinic and Homelessness and Legal Advocacy Clinic were specially trained to conduct a canvassing project to warn Orlando area homeowners of loan modification and foreclosure rescue scams. The Legal Clinic received a $40,000.00 grant for the initiative. Also, for the past five years, the Legal Clinic has received a grant from the Florida Bar Foundation to fund Public Service Fellowships to law students interested in providing and promoting pro bono and public service.
The Miss and Mr. FAMU coronation was held on Sunday, October 2 in Lee Hall Auditorium followed by the coronation ball in the Grand Ballroom.
Cromartie, 22, said that she had to look within herself to see if she possesses the qualities Miss FAMU should emulate: a woman of character, a well-rounded person, self assured and able to advocate on behalf of the university.
Cromartie plans to start the “Keen Machine” which is a vocabulary enhancer project that will assist students to expand their vocabulary.
Her goal is to help students when they are out on job interviews or meetings to not only look the part. As part of the initiative, she plans to donate a book scholarship to a student who correctly spells and defines the words. In addition, she plans to spearhead several community service projects.
“Community service is really important to me,” said Cromartie, a first-year MBA student from St. Petersburg, Fla. “I want students to join me in “Cromartie on your Corner,” go into the community and participate in giving back by visiting soup kitchens, nursing homes and shelters; whatever we need to do to help.”
Cromartie has also launched “TRULY FAMU." This initiative is intended to “acknowledge the legacy of FAMU and help preserve the history and traditions that once served as the guiding light for the State Normal College for Colored Students.”
Students will have the opportunity to make personal quilt squares which will be stitched into a larger quilt and displayed in the Black Archives.
Serving on the Royal Court with Cromartie and Johnson are Dominique James, freshman attendant; Micka Chavre, sophomore attendant; Sheree Oats, junior attendant; Nadia Deravine, senior attendant; Jasmine Miles, graduate attendant; Jean Altidor, king of Orange and Green, and Ciera Hall, queen of Orange and Green.
Johnson, 21, based his platform on chivalry and targeting young men by encouraging them to appreciate women. He plans to implement a monthly event where the students will be groomed on their etiquettes of courtesy.
“I’m glad it worked out in my favor,” said Johnson, a fourth-year business administration student from Dallas, Texas. “I definitely believe the things I plan to implement will bring about a positive change to the university and I am ecstatic that the student body has put their faith in me to be a male ambassador for them.”
As part of Johnson’s campaign, he selected 20 males to demonstrate chivalry wearing his signature - the letter F representing his first name - on a cardigan while walking around campus holding doors open and handing out roses to young ladies.
One of his initiatives is to encourage the royal court to exercise continued communication with prospective students they meet during recruitment trips.
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – The Legacy Continued: FAMU Building Paradigm for the Future was the message Florida A&M University (FAMU) President James H. Ammons delivered during his state of the university address to a filled to capacity audience in Gaither Gymnasium consisting of administrators, faculty, staff, students, alumni and retirees.
“As we begin this year, we are building a new paradigm for FAMU’s future by focusing on areas that will continue to distinguish us from our peers while continuing our tradition of using our research and the creation of new knowledge to meet the needs of our neighbors locally and globally,” said Ammons.
Ammons stated that FAMU Board of Trustees and he have identified a list of mutual goals to achieve this academic year.
To become internationally recognized, FAMU must strengthen the University’s performance and presence in the professional worldImprove the environment in two critical areas of operations and services (housing facilities and customer service)FundraisingEnhance enrollment management by providing services that will retain and assist students in their movement from enrollment to graduation“I am so proud of FAMU and all of our accomplishments over the past year,” said Markia Butler, a senior from Jacksonville, Fla. “President Ammons’ speech not only encouraged me to succeed in the classroom, but to succeed in the workforce once I graduate this fall.”
“I look forward to the President’s convocation,” said Kayana Lewis, an administrative information management major. “It gives me a lot of inspiration for the fall semester.”
Speaking of inspiration, it seems that the freshman class are a group of inspiring individuals.
According to Ammons, the average GPA for the class is 3.2 and the average ACT score is 20.5.
“You are an outstanding class and will be torchbearers for FAMU,” said Ammons.
Ammons concluded his message by sharing how important it is for everyone to work together in order for the university to more forward.
“Without your support our future is limited; with your support we can make this a stellar year. Join me as we charter new territories of greatness for our students, our alumni and generations to come.”
Following the president’s address, volleyball coach Tony Trifonov and Darlene Moore, women’s cross-country and track and field coach, and men’s track and field and cross country coach Wayne Angel introduced their team. Joe Taylor, head football coach, introduced the coaching staff and the Rattler Football team to the university community. Julian White, director of Bands, introduced the Marching “100.” The convocation concluded with the singing of the alma mater.
Challenge, a run/walk and youth fun run, on Saturday, October 1. The
run/walk will start at 8 a.m. and registration begins at 6:30 a.m. at
the Hansel E. Tookes Sr. Student Recreation Center. A wellness expo is
scheduled from 9 a.m. to noon at the recreation center.
The Rattler 5K Urban Challenge has a course filled with walls and
hills to climb, cars to jump over and a mud pit to scramble through.
Following the race, the Wellness Expo will feature community
organizations and businesses devoted to helping individuals to be more
active, eat healthier and improve their overall wellness. During the
Expo, the FAMU Women’s Center will announce the winners of the new
campus bicycle program. Twenty-eight students will receive bicycles
to help increase their physical activity and serve as role models for
Registration for the race is $20 for runners, $10 for walkers and $5
for college and high school students. There is no charge for children
12 and under for the fun run. The registration fee includes a T-
shirt. Prizes include cash, gift certificates, FAMU apparel and
For more information about the Rattler 5k Urban Challenge, contact
Bounce TV will feature a programming mix of theatrical motion pictures, sporting events, documentaries, specials, inspirational faith-based programs, off-network series, original programming and more.
Hardy will serve as the chief content officer, and Packer in the chief strategy and marketing officer position. Other founders include Martin Luther King III, former United Nations Ambassador and Atlanta Mayor Andrew Young and Andrew “Bo” Young III.
Packer and Hardy started their production company, Rainforest Films, in 1994. One of their most successful projects, “Stomp the Yard,” grossed more than $65 million and held the No. 1 position at the box office for two weekends in January of 2007. Later that year, the company produced “This Christmas,” which made $50 million. The success of both projects landed the duo amongst the “Top 25 Entertainers and Moneymakers” in Black Enterprise magazine in 2008.
ALL FAMU STUDENTS AND FACULTY ARE INVITED!
This programs seeks to develop a pipeline from HBCU campuses into the auxiliary enterprises that make up the Entertainment Industry. This is for students who desire a career, outside of performance, in the industry that is large, but very exclusive.
From architecture, engineering and business, to music, content and research, this program is reaching out to ALL MAJORS!!! This is a great opportunity for those students interested in lighting, set-design, sound and music production, film scores, script writing, technology, animatronics, publishing, history, construction, business, marketing, finance, architecture, animation and the various other areas of theater, film, studio and theme park production.
Faculty are also invited to a FACULTY RECEPTION to network with industry representatives. The reception will be held at the Meek-Eaton Black Archives from 4 p.m.-6 p.m.
Faculty and students must register at www.famusjgc-oip.com. Click the "Entertainment Forum" tab. You do not have to be logged in to view the site.
Industry representatives include: • CBS • Disney • Dreamworks Animation SKG • NBC Universal • OWN • Sony
For more information, contact Yanela Gordon at email@example.com or 850.412.5395.
Miller joined the Johnson Publishing Company family as the editor-in-chief of JET magazine in May 2011. An award-winning journalist, Miller is the bestselling author of five books, including the wildly popular Scholastic/Point 3-book teen series, Hotlanta. She also has extensive television experience including regular appearances on VH1’s humorous list shows, as well as ABC’s top-rated morning show, Good Morning America, BET and The Food Network.
Most recently, Miller served as editor-in-chief of the independent athletic lifestyle publication, SET Magazine.
The New York native worked at HONEY Magazine, where she started her career in 2001 as an unpaid intern before quickly becoming the girl-around-town columnist for the hip magazine’s monthly feature, “Road Trippin.” Readers quickly grew addicted to her many quirky, fun-filled adventures. Mitzi remained at HONEY for two years, during which she became the entertainment editor, received an honorable mention from the National Association of Black Journalists and ultimately became the face of HONEY magazine.
Miller is a skilled public speaker who speaks regularly on several nationally syndicated radio shows including The Warren Ballentine Show and has delivered the keynote address at various conferences and seminars nationwide including the 2009 Young Women’s Empowerment Summit at Long Island University; Mayor Daley’s 2009 Annual Book Club Conference in Chicago; and Essence Magazine’s Image of Black Women in Media Panel. She sits on the Board of Directors for the New York City based non-profit organization, Hip Hop 4 Life.
Tickets are now available through ticketmaster.com and the FAMU box office for $45, $30 and $20, depending on the location of the seats.
This is the fourth time this year that all sisters will perform together. Furthermore, this is only the second time the Clark Sisters have performed on a college campus since their last performance at FAMU in the 90s.
With a compelling, commanding fusion of styles as diverse as blues, jazz, R&B and classical, the Clark Sisters, which consists of sisters Jacky, Twinkie, Karen and Dorinda, created a sound that was new, fresh and entirely their own.
On Live – One Last Time, their newest release and first album together in more than 12 years, is truly landmark work. The project is an epic undertaking of unprecedented scope.
With virtually unlimited range, dazzling dynamics and multi-textured runs, riffs, and scats that have long been hallmarks of their singular vocal style, the Clark Sisters sound has given inspiration to countless singers of today. With millions of album sales to their collective credit, that select circle includes gospel, mainstream R&B and pop stars.
The sisters, born between 1951 and 1960, all showed prodigious musical talent from early childhood, and were raised under the careful musical and moral tutelage of their pastor father and mother.
The seeds for what would become Live – One Last Time were first planted by Karen’s husband when he suggested the foursome reunite to give posterity and the flocks of still-faithful Clark Sisters fans a taste of some new “sisters” material, as well as new, live renditions of a large number of Clark standards.
Live – One Last Time was recorded in July 2006, before a sell-out crowd of 6,000 in Houston’s George R. Brown Convention Center.
For more information, contact the Office of Communications at (850) 599-3413.
Davis, a two-time Columbia-Alfred du Pont award winner, has 30 years of experience working for major broadcast companies such as ABC, CBS, Fox, MSNBC.COM and National Public Radio. He also was an adjunct professor at Rutgers University School of Journalism in New Jersey, where he gained nine years of experience teaching courses in broadcast and digital journalism. Davis is an entrepreneur who developed the Digital Media Pyramid writing style and founded Mediafriendly.com, a company that helps major media companies locate diversity experts. He also worked with students at Rutgers to create www.itsonbad.com, a website geared to 16- to 25-year-olds.
“I hope to live up to the expectations that Harold Dow would have wanted, which are pretty high,” said Davis.
Dow was a long-time CBS News correspondent who came to FAMU and spoke to students as part of the Division of Journalism’s 35th anniversary in 2009. Dow died unexpectedly in August 2010. CBS officials announced last year they would donate funds to support hiring a visiting professor as part of its diversity initiative and as a tribute to Dow.
Crystal Johns, CBS news director of development and diversity, said, “We are very happy to support a program that will be such a wonderful recognition of all that Harold Dow embodied.”
Davis will be teaching broadcast news writing and broadcast announcing classes. He also plans to “teach students about the digital media pyramid, which is a model I created to replace the more than century-old inverted pyramid...”
A luncheon reception to honor Davis is scheduled for Oct. 14 with the FAMU School of Journalism and Graphic Communication Board of Visitors (BOV) and faculty.
The CBS Harold Dow Visiting Professor position will be funded for three years by CBS, according to SJGC Dean James Hawkins, Ph.D.
“This professorship will strengthen the quality of our broadcast journalism program, to another level,” Hawkins said. “Our students will be even more competitive when they are ready to enter the world of work.”
Hawkins also thanked Kim Godwin - who is a senior producer for the CBS Evening News, an SJGC alumna and BOV member for lobbying CBS for this professorship.
The School of Journalism and Graphic Communication was founded in 1982. Its Division of Journalism was the first journalism program at a historically black university to be nationally accredited by the ACEJMC. It offers four journalism sequences: newspaper, magazine production, broadcast (radio and television) and public relations.
The Marching “100,” a leader in marching bands, has appeared in films, commercials, Super Bowls, the Grammys, numerous magazine and newspaper articles and nationally televised performances. In 1985, the “100” was the recipient of the Sudler Trophy, the Heisman Trophy for marching bands, which is the highest honor a collegiate marching band can receive. It is awarded to a college or university marching band, which has demonstrated the highest of musical standards and innovative marching routines and ideas. FAMU is the only historically black college or university to receive that award.
“As we celebrate our 125 years of existence, we want to highlight all of the icons of our brand including the Marching “100,” our great presidents, Dr. Foster and others who helped FAMU to become a household name and brand,” said Sharon Saunders, chief communications officer and chair of the 125th Anniversary Celebration.
Foster, who was also called “The Law” and “The Maestro,” was the founder and creator of the noted Marching “100.” He served as the band’s director from 1946 to his retirement in 1998. He is credited with revolutionizing marching band techniques and reshaping the world’s concept of the collegiate marching band. Foster brought more than 30 new techniques to the band that have now become standard operating procedure for high school and college bands nationwide.
In 1998, Foster retired after 52 years of service to the university, the State of Florida, the nation and the world. On August 28, 2010, the FAMU family and this nation mourned the loss of Foster, who was 90-years old.
During the 2011-2012 academic year, FAMU will host several anniversary events including a community-wide picnic, a health symposium, an artist in bloom festival and much more.
“This is an exhilarating and monumental milestone in Florida A&M University’s history,” said FAMU President James H. Ammons “As we honor FAMU’s quasquicentennial and reflect on the university’s achievements, I can not think of a better way to signal the commemoration’s official launch than to honor a legend [William P. Foster] who was a key figure in the life and history of FAMU.”
Since October 3, 1887, FAMU has grown from its initial 15 students and two instructors to now educating more than 13,000 students. The University now offers 53 bachelor’s degrees, 28 master’s degrees, three professional degrees and 12 doctoral degrees. The three professional degrees include the JD, PharmD, and the Doctor of Physical Therapy.
FAMU prominently resides atop the highest of Tallahassee’s seven hills and is the only historically black university within the eleven-member State University System of Florida.
Gala tickets are $125 per person. Tickets can be purchased online at www.FAMU125.com or by calling (850) 599-3860.
“Our hearts and prayers go out to Shannon’s family and members of the Lady Rattlers Basketball Team,” said FAMU President James H. Ammons. “For Shannon to be killed in the prime of her life is tragic and senseless. She had so much promise as a student athlete. This is a great loss for the university and our athletic program.”
The FAMU Student Government Association will have a vigil tonight at 8:30 p.m. at the FAMU Eternal Flame to celebrate the life of Washington.
According to the Tallahassee Police Department (TPD), they responded to a report of a stabbing at 3025 South Adams Street, Sunday, September 4, at approximately 2:03 a.m. Officers located the victim, Washington, in the apartment with a knife wound to her neck. The victim was initially treated by TPD officers on the scene until EMS arrived. She was then transported to Tallahassee Memorial Hospital where she succumbed to her injuries.
A suspect, Starquineshia Palmer, 20, was detained and transported to TPD where she was interviewed and subsequently charged with first degree murder. Palmer was visiting Washington for the weekend, noted TPD.
Washington was a standout basketball player at Illinois Valley Community College (IVCC) earning All-American honors both seasons at IVCC. A native of Sarasota, Fla., her success at IVCC earned her the distinction of having a replica of her jersey to be honored in the Women's Basketball Hall of Fame in Knoxville, Tenn. Washington transferred to FAMU and was expected to play this fall as a shooting guard.
“It is truly a trying situation to lose a student-athlete that has come to us to further her education and excel at her sport,” said LeDawn Gibson, FAMU’s Head Women’s Basketball Coach. “As a coach, this is the kind of incident you just
hope you never have to deal with — the death of one of your players at such a young age.”
“The closeness of the students, coaches and staff at FAMU Athletics resembles that of a family,” said Derek Horne, FAMU’s director of Athletics. “Losing a family member is never easy. Our task now is to make sure we learn from this, and make as much effort at preparing our student athletes for all situations that may occur.”
TPD Victim Advocates have been working with the FAMU Athletic Department, and the victim’s teammates.
Following the incident, the university raised approximately $25,000 through a mobile giving campaign, a Haiti Relief Benefit Concert and other means of fundraising, as well as collecting necessities and medical supplies for the victims.
“It is important for FAMU to continue to help Haiti because it will still take many years before Haiti and its most important asset--its people-- fully recover from the devastation caused by the earthquake,” said Henry Kirby, chair of the FAMU Haiti Relief Committee. “Haiti has a rich and proud history. We have a number of students from Haiti that are attending FAMU and are eager to return to their homeland and use their education and experiences at FAMU to help rebuild the country and assist their family members and fellow citizens.”
According to Kirby, $10,000 will be donated to a United Nations sponsored orphanage in Haiti. The remaining $15,000 will go toward the Historically Black College/University (HBCU) Consortium that will help to fund scholarships for students to attend the State University of Haiti. The goal of the consortium is to raise $12 million to construct a classroom building equipped to receive telecourses taught by the faculty from the HBCUs. The group also plans to raise money so the State University of Haiti can hire replacements for professors who died in the earthquake.
The festival kicked off with the First Lady Run/Walk-a-Thon. Nearly 100 runners and walkers joined Judy Ammons, the first lady of FAMU. The first lady of Tallahassee Community College, Sara Murdaugh, also joined Ammons as well as the FAMU men’s and women’s track and field and cross-country teams.
“I want to thank all of you for joining me,” Ammons said. “What a great way to start the Festival.”
The festival had an assortment of fun-filled activities for both young and old. Some of the events included the much anticipated hula hoop contest; the ever so precise grape throwing game; a wine-tasting session featuring FAMU’s own and Florida commercial wineries; a water slide that kept the young cool and happy; and the highlight of the festival, the good old-fashioned grape stomping contest, which had more than 20 teams participating.
This year, the festival featured a health fair with more than 20 Tallahassee community health care organizations such as UnitedHealth Care, the Leon County Health Department, Neighborhood Health Services and 211 Big Bend. FAMU’s College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences was on hand providing participants with blood pressure checks and glucose screenings.
Some of the health care participants thought the festival was really great.
“This is my first time here,” said Rebecca Whitehead, with the 211 Big Bend. “I will come back next year.”
Her co-worker echoed her comments.
“It [festival] is great and a lot of fun,” said Katherine Melo. “It has a lot of exciting things to see and do.”
FAMU students took part in the festival by either volunteering, enjoying in the festivities or performing. The incomparable Marching “100” took center stage by keeping the attendees excited and dancing.
A student volunteer Bianca Ainn, a pharmacy major from Snellville, Ga., said the festival was a great community event.
“This is a great way to get the community together,” said Ainn. “The festival has some fun things for all ages.”
Katie Melo, a resident of Tallahassee, best summed up the festival while smiling from ear to ear.
“Oh my God, this is awesome,” said Katie Mayo, who participated in the grape stomping contest. I have never been here before but this is really cool. I am really impressed. I will definitely be back here next year.”
Next year’s festival is scheduled for August 25, 2012.
“FAMU to me is a home away from home,” said Smith, a 2011 graduate of Bayside High School in Palm Bay, Fla. “My sisters all expressed to me the joy and experiences that they have had at FAMU and how much I will love the atmosphere there.”
While Smith has chosen to continue her family’s legacy on ‘The Hill,’ the 17-year-old scholar will soon be writing a story of her own.
As a junior in high school, Smith became involved in Collegiate High, a dual enrollment program with the local community college. She admits that life became a juggling act—balancing college courses, high school homework and her household chores.
That dedication paid off this past May when Smith earned her associate’s degree while maintaining a 3.7 grade point average (GPA). One week later, she donned a cap and gown again when she graduated from high school with a 4.2 GPA.
“A quality education is very important to me,” said Smith, who earned a George W. Gore Scholarship from FAMU. “My mother has always expressed the importance of a good education, so that I wouldn’t end up working two jobs to provide for my family like she had to. I want to be a very successful woman and the only way I know how to be that is to get the best education that I can.”
Smith was rewarded a $3,000 scholarship per year with an additional $2,000 annually because of her major.
Her sister, Naashon Ducille, said she told her baby sister that FAMU was the only school of choice, even though Smith applied and was accepted to Florida State University (FSU) and Jacksonville University.
“I wanted her to experience the love and family that I did,” said Ducille, who earned her bachelor’s degree in health science from FAMU in 2007. “I know FAMU will help her grow to be who she is destined to be. She is strong, intelligent and very special. Now when we go back to FAMU for Homecoming, it will truly be a family affair.”
A native of Hollywood, Fla., Smith plans to study industrial engineering in the FAMU-FSU College of Engineering. She was first attracted to FAMU while visiting her older sister, Sarah Ducille, during the summer of 2001 when Smith was just eight years old.
“When I was younger I wanted to be so many things and I was always changing my mind,” she said of her career path. “First I wanted to be teacher, but I realized I didn’t have much patience. Then I wanted to be a doctor because of all the cool medical shows, but I soon realized I didn’t like blood. As of two years ago, I decided I wanted to be an engineer like my big sister because I enjoy math and science.”
Smith said she believes people associated with FAMU bring a true sense of pride and community to the campus.
“I feel as though it is deeply embedded in the roots and I want to learn and become a part of that,” she said. “It already feels like home.”
Ready to provide “Excellence with Caring,” Florida A&M University (FAMU) is starting off the 2011-2012 school year with a makeover for its bookstore, new distance-learning programs and upgraded facilities.
This fall, male students will be returning to Sampson and Young Residence Halls, which have been closed since 2003. The two historic dormitories were recently renovated to house a total of 238 male students. Each building has a mix of social spaces and amenities such as a lounge, public restrooms, laundry, storage, a computer lab and offices.
During meetings FAMU President James H. Ammons had with the students in the residential halls last school year, many wanted the laundry facilities updated.
The university has made some significant changes, equipping the laundry rooms with new energy efficient washers and dryers. These up-to-date washers and dryers are connected to the Internet, giving residents the ability to pay for each wash or dry cycle with a debit card, credit card or coin, eliminating the chore of finding the correct number of quarters, or the need to keep track of or replenish a laundry card. For those students who prefer to use coins, there are several high volume bill change machines.
The laundry rooms in each residence hall will also be equipped with a Laundry View 3-D monitoring system, which will allow students to check the availability of washers and dryers before going to the laundry room, and to get a text message after their laundry is done.
What is also new on FAMU’s campus is the distance-learning offerings. This fall, FAMU will offer master’s degrees in nursing, public health and business. University officials are expecting 271 students during the first year of the program. The courses will be hosted on www.hbcusonline.com.
This fall, FAMU will offer students some cost-saving options and expanded services at the University bookstore. The bookstore now includes an expanded convenience food section, gifts, Rattler shop for FAMU clothing, and unmatched textbook options. Along with installing new fixtures, countertops, and lighting, the renovations have incorporated the school colors – orange and green – into the design of the bookstore along with images and accents that evoke the proud history of our university.
“The expansion of the convenience area has been very popular,” said bookstore manager Angela Williams. “Everyone that has come into our store loves the new look and we’re thrilled that we can offer our students more of what they want and need right here on our campus.”
The bookstore will now be a full-service operation, offering students textbook options that include new, used, rental and digital books. Students will also have the option to order textbooks online, at any time.
Florida A&M University was originally founded as the State Normal
College for Colored Students that served the underrepresented and
underprivileged. Today, Florida A&M University boasts an
extraordinarily diverse student body including citizens from across
the State of Florida and the globe. For nearly 125 years, Florida A&M
University has served as a beacon of hope for thousands of talented
young men and women seeking to improve their lives through the pursuit
of a college education. To celebrate its rich history, Florida A&M
University will kick off its 125th anniversary on October 3, 2011. The
University is proud of its history and is dedicated and committed to
providing “Excellence with Caring” to a new generation of scholars.
A year-long series of special events are planned to celebrate the
aspirations and accomplishments achieved over the past 125 years as
well as illuminate the university’s vision for its future.
FAMU Yesterday. FAMU Today. FAMU Forever.
For more information, contact the Office of Communications at (850)
Celebrating its 11th year, Florida A&M University (FAMU) will host its Annual Grape Harvest Festival Saturday, August 27 at the Viticulture and Small Fruit Research Center located at 6505 Mahan Drive in Tallahassee. This year’s theme is “A Vintage Year: Stomp, Rattle and Roll.”
Judy Ammons, first lady of FAMU, will serve as chairperson of the FAMU Grape Harvest Festival along with Jane Marks, first lady of Tallahassee, and Mary Barley, a wellness coach and author, as co-chairpersons.
The festival will begin at 8:30 a.m. and the First Lady Vineyard Run/Walk will kickoff with registration at 7 a.m.
The Annual FAMU Grape Harvest Festival is a community event being sponsored by FAMU and coordinated through its Center for Viticulture and Small Fruit Research.
“We are pulling all plugs to provide an entertaining day of discovery and fun that helps to build stronger relationships between the university and the community as well as families and friends throughout Florida and beyond,” said Bobby Phills, festival coordinator.
This year’s festival will have an assortment of fun-filled amusements, educational displays and informative demonstrations for both young and old. The schedule includes the following: the hula hoop contest; grape throwing games; winemaking demonstrations/workshops; blood bank donations; a health fair with exhibits from the FAMU Schools of Nursing, Allied Health, and Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences; an invitational wine-tasting session featuring FAMU’s own and Florida commercial wineries; and an exciting and highly popular old-fashioned grape stomping contest.
Participants will have an opportunity to pick grapes at a specified time and place. Bags will be provided; but no buckets will be allowed. The festival promises to be jammed packed with fun-filled excitement for the entire family.
Admission is $5 per person and $2 for children 12 and under. The pre-registration fee for the 1K and 5K is $10 for children and students with valid ID on or before August 26 and $15 the day of race. The pre-registration fee for adults is $15 on or before August 26 and $20 the day of the race. The fee for the wine tasting is $2 and interested individuals must be 21 and have proper ID.
For more information, contact Angela Harper at (850) 599-3996.
A memorial service for the fallen Rattler will take place, Saturday, August 13 at Mt. Hermon AME Church in Fort Lauderdale.
After graduating from Broward County’s Dillard High School, she enrolled in Florida A&M College (FAMC), where she served as student body president. At FAMC, she met and married the co-captain of the football team, Frank Scruggs Sr.
After earning her bachelor of science degree, she and her husband joined the faculty of Dillard High School. She received her master’s degree from Ohio State University. She concluded her working years as a guidance counselor at Piper High School, Sunrise, Fla.
Scruggs was a charter member of the Delta Eta Zeta Chapter of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc. in Ft. Lauderdale, which honored her by creating the Frances Scruggs Scholarship in 1997. She had two sons, Frank Scruggs Jr. and Joshua David Scruggs.
In lieu of gifts, the family is asking for donations to the Frances Scruggs Scholarship, Zeta D.O.V.E. Foundation, Inc., P.O. Box 15811, Plantation, Florida 33318.
Ten students from the Florida A&M University (FAMU) School of Journalism and Graphic Communication (SJGC) will depart from Tallahassee on Friday, Aug. 26, for a four-day trip to the White House to meet the nation’s highest level of press officials.
“We’re very grateful for students to be able to go behind the scenes because we understand the impact and power of communication and media,” said SJGC Assistant Professor and Director of Internship/Placement Yanela Gordon. “We recognize how vital it is for students to see this from a federal level. That is not something we can teach in class.”
The students will have an opportunity to ask questions and meet with White House senior communication officials, directors of congressional communications and other press officials. They will also get a tour of the White House as well as the briefing room where a number of government officials such as President Barack Obama convene to speak with the press.
“It signals we are investing in opportunities for students that are immediately rewarding,” said James Hawkins, dean of the SJGC. “It’s an indication that we are providing a quality education for our students.”
The students selected to attend include: Alexandria Collins, a junior broadcast journalism student from Tallahassee; Aria Aaron, a junior broadcast journalism student from Nashville, Tenn.; Clarece Polke, a senior print journalism student from Archer, Fla.; Duane Robin, a journalism student from Cay Bay, St. Maarten; Denecah Nickerson, a senior public relations student from Houston, Texas; Kari Knowles, a senior broadcast journalism student from Tampa, Fla; Tiffany Bain, a senior public relations student from Miami, Fla.; Jordan Culver, a senior newspaper journalism student from Winter Garden, Fla.; Wandoo Makurdi, a graduate broadcast journalism student from Lagos, Nigeria; and Brittany Holman, a senior broadcast journalism student from Leesburg, Fla.
Collins, who works in the FAMU Student Government Association’s executive branch communications department, is excited about the opportunity and said the trip will help her with her duties in SGA.
“It’s an amazing opportunity to visit the White House, witness the political process and be a part of history,” Collins said.
According to Gordon, FAMU alumni who work in the communications field are abundant on Capitol Hill. She also believes that having students meet with the communications professionals “will open students” minds to potential careers that are going to impact people’s lives.
“By accepting this invitation from the White House, not only are students going to gain valuable insight from communications and press professionals of the highest levels, this also helps FAMU strengthen and further grow relationships with the White House,” said Gordon.
About FAMU’s School of Journalism and Graphic Communication
The School of Journalism and Graphic Communication was founded in 1982. Its Division of Journalism was the first journalism program at a historically black university to be nationally accredited by the ACEJMC. It offers four journalism sequences: newspaper, magazine production, broadcast (radio and television) and public relations.
Florida A&M University (FAMU) was named one of the best colleges in the Southeast by The Princeton Review. It is one of 134 institutions The Princeton Review recommends in its “Best in the Southeast” section of its website feature, “2012 Best Colleges: Region by Region.”
“We're pleased to recommend Florida A&M University to users of our site as one of the best schools to earn their undergrad degree,” said Robert Franek, Princeton Review's senior vice president and publisher. “We chose it and the other terrific institutions we name as ‘regional best' colleges mainly for their excellent academic programs.”
The 134 colleges and universities The Princeton Review chose for its "Best in the Southeast" designations are located in twelve states: Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia and West Virginia. The Princeton Review also designated 220 colleges in the Northeast, 153 in the Midwest, and 121 in the West as best in their locales on the company’s “2012 Best Colleges: Region by Region” lists. Collectively, the 629 colleges named “regional best(s)” constitute about 25 percent of the nation's 2,500 four-year colleges.
“It is an honor to be named as one of the best colleges in the southeast by The Princeton Review,” said FAMU President James H. Ammons. “At Florida A&M University, we continue to strive for excellence while providing a first-class education for our students. We take pride in this recognition, and will continue to build on our reputation as one of the nation's premier institutions of higher learning.”
From several hundred schools in each region, The Princeton Review winnowed its list based on institutional data collected directly from the FAMU, visits to schools over the years and the opinions of its staff, plus college counselors and advisors.
“We also take into account what students at the schools reported to us about their campus experiences at them on our 80-question student survey for this project,” Franek said. “Only schools that permit us to independently survey their students are eligible to be considered for our regional 'best' lists.”
This past April, FAMU was selected as one of The Princeton Review’s “311 Green Colleges: 2011 Edition.” The university was the only historically black college or university (HBCU) to make the list, which focused solely on colleges that have demonstrated a strong commitment to sustainability in their academic offerings, campus infrastructure, activities and career preparation.
The Princeton Review has been a pioneer and leader in helping students achieve their higher education goals for 30 years through college and graduate school test preparation and private tutoring. The Princeton Review partners with schools and guidance counselors throughout the U.S. to assist in college readiness, test preparation and career planning services, helping more students pursue postsecondary education.