I am sure you have a story about the first time you set foot on your college campus.
For me, it was in June 1969, as a new freshman, I first set foot on the Mississippi State University (MSU) campus. I was only 15. I was the first member of my family to attend college, and I had my sights set on completing the Aerospace Engineering program and serving my nation. Equally important was the fact that I was part of the first group of African Americans admitted to MSU. I became the second African American to graduate in Aerospace Engineering. Nearly 50 years later, I am considered to be a black pioneer of MSU.
My time at MSU has had a huge impact on my life. The excellence of my courses, my professors, and the friendships formed in the Bagley College of Engineering established the solid foundation upon which my success during 30+ years serving the Departments of the Navy and the Air Force and in my current role leading a global Aerospace and Defense Advisory firm is based. Just as we all have stories about our first experiences on campus, I am sure you have stories about the tremendous impact your University had upon your life, as well.
Today as an active and humble member of the MSU Black Alumni Advisory Council (BAAC), Head of the Scholarship Committee of the BAAC and a proud member of the Bagley Aerospace Engineering Department Board of Advisors, I, and all members of the BAAC, are striving to pay this foundational debt forward.
To that end, the BAAC is establishing an ENDOWED SCHOLARSHIP to assist full-time entering African-American students who demonstrate financial need and leadership ability – with preference given to first generation university students.
Our story at MSU is continuing with this new chapter in which we can make a difference and give the next generation of black leaders at MSU a hand up for success.
Thank you. #HailState,