Recognition of MEP Staff

National Recognition

Virginia Booth Womack receives Women of Color History Maker in Diversity Award, CoNECD | 2018

Two women who lead diversity efforts in Purdue's College of Engineering have been recognized nationally for their leadership in diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts within engineering and related fields.

The Women of Color History Makers in Diversity Awards were presented during the first annual CoNECD (Collaborative Network for Engineering and Computing Diversity) Conference in Virginia.

The Purdue recipients are Beth Holloway, the Leah H. Jamieson Director of Purdue's Women in Engineering Program and assistant dean of Diversity and Engagement in the College of Engineering; and Virginia Booth Womack, director of Purdue's Minority Engineering Program and president of the National Association of Multicultural Engineering Program Advocates (NAMEPA).

CoNECD, hosted by the National Association of Multicultural Engineering Program Advocates, provides a forum for exploring current research and practice to enhance diversity and inclusion of all underrepresented groups in the engineering and computing professions. 

Virginia Booth Womack, Interim Executive Director of NSBE | December 2013 - August 2014

Virginia Booth Womack was selected to serve as Interim Executive Director for the National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE) from December 2013 - August 2014 with permission from Dean Leah Jamieson. This is the second time Purdue has provided support to NSBE during transition. During the interim period, Womack led the NSBE staff to: an increase in Board of Corporate Affiliates members; the launch of new Summer Engineering Experience for Kids (SEEK) camps in Chicago and Atlanta; and seeding for 2015 campus in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania and Milwaukee, Wisconsin. New initiatives launched during Womack's term included an Algebra by Seventh Grade (Ab7G) initiative for rising 3rd graders and year-long engagement efforts to integrate SEEK rising 6th graders into existing NSBE Jr. Chapters. 

Virginia Booth Womack, Outstanding Minority Engineering Program Administrator Award, NAMEPA | 2014 

Virginia Booth Womack, Director of Purdue's Minority Engineering Program, received the 2014 National Association of Multicultural Engineering Program Advocates (NAMEPA) Outstanding Minority Engineering Program Administrator Award. She was recognized at the 2014 NAMEPA National Conference in San Jose, California. The award was established to honor members who have made exceptional contributions in pre-college enrichment, recruitment, leadership, and retention. It recognizes and honors NAMEPA members for their service in college-level administration and their dedication to increasing minority participation in engineering. The award also recognized Womack for inspiring others to make service a central part of their lives.

Purdue Community Award

Heather Coar, Inaugural College of Engineering PRIME Grant Recipient | June 2019

On June 4, 2019, Heather was announced as one of ten inaugural winners of the College of Engineering Staff Professional Renewal in Maximizing Excellence (PRIME) Grants. The award was presented on behalf of Dean Mung Chiang and the Dean's Staff Affairs Committee. Heather identified the American Marketing Association's (AMA) 2019 Academic Conference as a natural fit to her professional development goals and one that would benefit the three programs that she reports to. There are several conference tracks that will expose her to seasoned professionals and topics. These tracks will help Heather to brush up on knowledge gained in her undergraduate and graduate degree programs, as well as push the boundaries of marketing solutions that she currently deploys day-to-day. 

Minority Engineering Program Staff, BGSA Engagement Award | April 2016

On Saturday, April 9, 2016, at the 15th Annual Awards and Recognition Banquet, the Minority Engineering Program Staff was the recipient of the 2016 Black Graduate Student Association (BGSA) Engagement Award. The BGSA Engagement Award is given out annually to an organization and/or individuals who have made significant contributions to engagement, diversity, and community outreach at Purdue University.

Research and Publications

ASEE | 2014

Our investigation into the efficacy of Academic Boot Camp titled "Can an engineering summer bridge program effectively transition underrepresented minority student success?" was presented at the 2014 American Society for Engineering Education Conference (ASEE) in Indianapolis, Indiana by Tasha Zephirin, Dr. Darryl Dickerson, Freddy Solis, Virginia Booth Womack, and Dr. Carol Stwalley.

Frontiers in Education | 2014

At the 2014 Frontiers in Education Conference in Madrid, Spain, our research on intentional embedding of non-cognitive skills into the Summer Engineering Workshops was presented: "Development of Non-Cognitive Skills in Minority Engineering Outreach Programs," authored by, Tasha Zephirin, Dr. Darryl Dickerson, Freddy Solis, and DeLean Tolbert.

Invited Lectures

NSBE Roundtable

Dr. Darryl Dickerson was invited to present on MEP's retention programs and their specific impact on African American engineering student persistence and performance as part of the National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE) Retention Strategic Roundtable. The presentation provided programmatic structure and metrics as a model for replication.

NAMEPA National Conference, San Jose, California | 2014

Dr. Dickerson and Virginia Booth Womack co-presented on the theme "Addressing the Challenge-Evidence Based Interventions" at the 2014 National Association of Multicultural Engineering Program Advocates (NAMEPA) National Conference in San Jose, California.


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