Latest Articles

New Orleans Teenager Elijah Hogan Overcomes Homelessness And Graduates At The Top Of His High School Class

Elijah Hogan’s life circumstances did not deter him from graduating high school at the top of his class. Hogan recently graduated from New Orleans, LA’s Walter L. Cohen High School. However, for more than a year while attending school, he lived at the Covenant House, a local homeless shelter, People reports. He learned about the shelter from his grandmother, a retired social worker. “Her lease form for the house that we all used to live in started to expire, and we only had 30 days until we had to move out. So, I took it upon myself to live independently,” Hogan told People . “She gave me some info about Covenant House and told me to continue on with my education. …Without them, I wouldn’t have been able to finish my high school years, giving me a place to stay, a place to eat, a place to sleep. I wouldn’t have been able to be where I’m at now.” In May 2024, Hogan graduated as the class valedictorian with a 3.89 grade point average. “Above all the trials, tests, and hardships, what...

Jun 14, 2024

The First Student From LeBron James' I Promise School Graduates College

Anthony Claytor is the first I Promise School student to graduate from college. As AFROTECH™ previously reported, the school launched in Akron, OH, through the LeBron James Family Foundation, which was established in 2004 to “positively affect the lives of children and young adults through education and co-curricular educational initiatives.” The I Promise School came into fruition in 2017 through a partnership with Akron Public Schools (APS) and a committee of local leaders, educators, parents, and experts, Andscape reported. The school officially opened in 2018. “This school is so important to me because our vision is to create a place for the kids in Akron who need it most — those that could fall through the cracks if we don’t do something,” James said at the time, according to Andscape. “We’ve learned over the years what works and what motivates them, and now we can bring all of that together in one place, along with the right resources and experts. If we get to them early...

Jun 13, 2024

Jay-Z's Roc Nation Announces Support Of PASS Bill To Offer Philadelphia Students From Low-Income Homes Access To Private Schools

Jay-Z’s Roc Nation has announced its support of an initiative focused on students in Philadelphia, PA. The full-service entertainment company is backing the Pennsylvania Award for Student Success (PASS) in its goal to provide scholarships, according to Fox-29. The educational campaign is said to offer students from low-income households and underperforming schools access to private schools. “PASS — which is also known as Senate Bill 757 — is legislation aimed at increasing education opportunities for underprivileged youth attending the state’s lowest performing public schools,” a press release detailed, per Fox-29. The outlet notes that Roc Nation has spearheaded “Dine and Learn,” an event series to educate students and parents in Philadelphia about PASS. “We have enjoyed such a special connection with Philadelphians, so we’ve made it our mission to invest in the long-term success of the city’s changemakers,” Dania Diaz, managing director of philanthropy at Roc Nation, said. Amid...

Jun 13, 2024

Shaquille O'Neal Is Giving 500 High School Students A Chance To 'Try College' For Free

Shaquille O’Neal’s new educational initiative is underway. As AFROTECH™ previously reported, O’Neal learned of the efforts of Tade Oyerinde, who founded and leads accredited online community college startup Campus, while reading a Forbes article about him. The startup had received a $29 million funding raise in 2023 with OpenAI CEO Sam Altman and Discord Founder Jason Citron leading its Series A funding round. “Shaq saw the Forbes article and had his team reach out, and he was just like, ‘This kid raised all this money from these guys.’ He thought it was unbelievable,” Oyerinde told AFROTECH™ at the time. O’Neal was so impressed that he wanted to get involved in Oyerinde’s mission. He is now an investor in the company and, most recently, is kicking off Campus’s latest initiative. According to a press release, O’Neal and Campus.edu plan to provide 500 high school students and recent graduates with access to business courses taught by college professors from top colleges and...

Jun 11, 2024

14-Year-Old Keniah Washington Graduates From Saint Leo University, Plans To Become Neonatologist

At 14 years old, Keniah Washington has graduated from college. Washington graduated with a liberal arts associate’s degree from Saint Leo University in Florida and a 3.0 GPA, according to USA Today. With the support of her former high school teachers and staff, she enrolled in a dual-enrollment program while attending Icon Preparatory School in Tampa, FL, and took online courses. “I started taking high school courses when I was in sixth grade,” Keniah said. “Once the teachers and staff saw that I was still excelling in my work, they enrolled me and a group of other kids in Saint Leo, and we had a tutor.” Washington admits that reaching her goal was not easy. She had to skip some school events, such as prom and homecoming. “My biggest challenge was being on track and not trying to fall behind,” she said, per USA Today. “I was missing out on prom and homecoming — everything other people experienced in high school. But I told myself that… I’m doing the high school courses now so I can...

Jun 11, 2024

Meet The Entrepreneur Behind A Georgia-Based Candle Business Introducing STEM To Children

Anikitia Abram leads the first Black- and woman-owned candle-making studio in Middle Georgia, according to the Macon. She accomplished this feat in July 2023 with the opening of Pretty Lux Co., which offers candle, skin, and hair products that are “100% vegan, cruelty free, and created with minimal ingredients,” per its website. For Abram, that means using locally-sourced materials and remaining environmentally conscious during production. “Pretty Lux Co. is not just a business; it’s a movement toward greater wellness and understanding, providing a nurturing environment that supports both personal and communal growth,” Abram told the Macon. “This foundational inspiration continues to drive every aspect of Pretty Lux Co., guiding our mission to enrich lives through both our products and our educational initiatives.” Those initiatives encompass a focus on engaging the community in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) through candle and skincare development. “By...

Jun 7, 2024

The 9 HBCU Events You Need To Know About In 2024

Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) are one of the strongest forces in Black culture. Originally created due to Black students being shut out of white academic spaces, these institutions not only educated young adults, but also served as a space for community, networking and instilling cultural pride at a time when being Black in America was significantly harder than it is today. Today, there are 107 HBCUs scattered across the US , with over 228,000 students enrolled in them. Most people are aware of the longstanding schools like Howard University, Spelman College , Morehouse College, and Tuskegee University, but there are countless more across the North and South . And while these schools focus on their academics, the student body also enjoys the social aspect. From homecoming celebrations to a rich Divine Nine community, there’s plenty to do to connect with fellow HBCU students, alumni, and faculty. The school year may be technically over for most colleges right...

Howard University's College Of Engineering And Architecture Receives Its Largest Unrestricted Philanthropic Donation

HBCU Howard University has received a record-breaking donation. According to a press release provided to AFROTECH™, Howard University has become the recipient of a $5 million donation from Autodesk, a global leader in design and technology, as part of a collaboration the two have shared for six years. The company additionally allows its software to be used in classrooms at no cost to students and educators. The new funding will support the College of Engineering and Architecture’s Design and Make lab to provide software and state-of-the-art equipment, as well as educators who will empower the future engineers. This marks the largest unrestricted philanthropic donation in the college’s history, according to the release. “We’ve been fortunate to have a long relationship with Autodesk that has truly benefited our students. This gift is yet another way in which Autodesk is helping to set our students up for success,” Howard University professor and department chair of mechanical...

Jun 5, 2024

What Is Post Secondary Education?

Post-secondary education (or higher education ) is the stage of learning that follows the completion of high school or secondary education. This level of education captures a range of institutions and programs designed to prepare individuals for personal and professional development and active contribution to civil society. Are you ready to pursue a new academic chapter? Post-secondary education is a big component for anyone planning to build an academic pathway and or a career, so let’s dive deeper into the pros and cons. Types Of Post-Secondary Institutions Post-secondary education includes various types of institutions, each offering different kinds of programs, degrees and credentials: Universities: Universities offer undergraduate and graduate programs leading to bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees. They provide a broad range of disciplines, from liberal arts and sciences to professional fields like engineering, medicine, and law. Colleges : Colleges, particularly...

Jun 4, 2024

The Top 10 Schools Consistently Ranked As The Best HBCUs

Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) are higher learning institutions established in the United States during the 19th and early 20th centuries primarily for the education of Black Americans. Most HBCUs were founded after the Civil War, during the Reconstruction era, with the purpose of providing higher education opportunities for Black Americans who were previously denied access to mainstream institutions due to segregation and racial discrimination. Today, these same schools still provide opportunities for Black Americans to embrace their culture while getting their education. With many schools existing around the country, certain ones have been regarded as the best HBCUs. The top HBCUs are often ranked based on various criteria such as academic excellence, student outcomes , notable alumni , campus facilities and more. Here is a list of the top 10 best HBCUs, along with what makes them stand out. Spelman College Spelman consistently ranks at number one as the best...

Jun 4, 2024

For The 11th Year In A Row, Every Graduate At This Predominantly Black Chicago High School Were Accepted To College

It’s raining Black excellence at Southland College Prep Charter High School! For the 11th year in the row, its senior class, which is predominantly Black, have all been accepted to college, Black News reports. In fact, $50 million in merit and need-based scholarships have already been offered to students, with that number expected to exceed $60 million. “And the amount of money rises each year,” senior Lundyn Williams told CBS News. Dr. Blondean Y. Davis, Southland’s CEO and superintendent of Matteson School District 162, told Black News: “Our students faced unprecedented challenges, and they addressed every one of them and more than met them.” Davis adds when she founded the Chicago, IL, area school in 2010, she was told by others that “students from our area would not be able to access the Ivy League or top schools in the country.” Clearly, she has proven doubters wrong. “I have been accepted to 43 different schools and applied to 51,” Williams mentioned, according to CBS News....

May 30, 2024

12-Year-Old E’leese Shelton Heads To College And Aspires To Become A Pediatrician

This 12-year-old — E’leese Shelton — is heading to college! According to WCTV, E’leese graduated from Tallavana Christian School in Havana, FL, surrounded by supportive family. “It’s just kind of surreal,” she explained, according to the outlet. “I believe it’s mostly because of my support system, like my friends, my mom, my church community.” While to some, a 12-year-old accomplishing this feat may come as a surprise, it is not for E’leese’s mother, Danrell. When her daughter was just 2 years old, she already knew she was unique by how quickly she picked up learning on a LeapFrog tablet. “I got her a LeapFrog tablet, and we didn’t know that she was self-taught until it was telling her to do the letters, uppercase, lowercase letters, and we didn’t realize that she knew all of it,” Danrell explained, according to WCTV. “I did not teach her any of it. She just had the LeapFrog, and she knew it.” Additionally, E’leese continued to accelerate in learning, reading at the age of 3 and...

May 30, 2024

University Of North Carolina Board Of Governors Votes To Repeal DEI Policy, Likely Resulting In Removal Of Related Roles Across Its 17 Public Universities

A diversity policy is being repealed in North Carolina’s public university system. As AFROTECH™ previously reported, the University of North Carolina (UNC) System Board of Governors’ University Governance Committee had approved “a policy that repeals the university system’s existing policy and regulation on diversity and inclusion.” This would impact all 17 public universities in the state and lead to the elimination of diversity programs and likely end DEI job roles, although the policy allows universities to “implement programming or services designed to have a positive effect on the academic performance, retention, or graduation of students from different backgrounds,” The News & Observer reports. When a position or office is terminated or changed, chancellors will be required to explain to UNC System President Peter Hans how “reductions in force and spending” were caused by the cuts and how the “savings achieved” could be “redirected to initiatives related to student success and...

May 24, 2024

A Conservative Group Has Filed A Lawsuit Against MIT For Its Women Of Color Program, Claims It's Discriminatory

A lawsuit has been filed against the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). The Equal Protection Project, which is under the Legal Insurrection Foundation, is suing MIT for its program supporting women of color, CRWN ( The Creative Regal Women of kNowledge), according to Boston.com. The nonprofit claims that the program is exclusionary, discriminatory, and violates Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 because “only undergraduate ‘women of color’ can participate in the program.” “We bring this civil rights complaint against the Massachusetts Institute of Technology for creating, supporting and promoting a program for undergraduate students — called the Creative Regal Women of Knowledge, or ‘The CRWN’ — that engages in invidious discrimination on the basis of race, color and sex,” foundation founder William A. Jacobson wrote in the complaint, per the outlet. In a follow-up statement, he added. “It is sad and disheartening to...

May 23, 2024

US Commits $32M To Support STEM Educational Initiatives In Kenya

Kenya will receive significant backing to support education. According to a news release, the United States signed a Framework for Cooperation with the Kenyan government to support innovation in STEM fields in partnership with its universities and the industry. During Kenyan President William Ruto’s U.S. visit, USAID Counselor Clinton White signed the “Enhancing Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) Education for Economic Development Framework for Cooperation” along with Kenyan Prime Cabinet Secretary Wycliffe Musalia Mudavadi at Spelman College in Atlanta, GA. Enhancements to Kenya’s education infrastructure will soon be in effect, empowered by a $32 million commitment, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) also announced. This includes $850,000 earmarked for the Edtech Africa initiative — a program to promote collaboration between HBCUs, the Open University of Kenya, Mastercard, and Microsoft. The investment will also encompass a $6.5 million project to...

May 23, 2024