Profiles of Excellence, in their own words...

Nancy Gegbe

Posted: May 3rd, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: students | Tags: , , , , , | 1 Comment »

 

Where are you from?
Mesquite, TX
Where are you currently?
Miami, FL
What year did you graduate?
2007
What was your major?
Chemistry:Pre-Med
Do you have any advanced degrees?
M.S. in Biochemistry at University of New Hampshire
What are you currently doing (professionally)?
2nd year medical student at Ross University School of Medicine
How would you describe DNIMAS to someone who doesn’t know about the program?
DNIMAS stands for Dozoretz National Institute for Mathematics and Applied Sciences.  It offers a full scholarship to promising students who are interested in these fields and have the plans to pursue professional degrees.
How did DNIMAS help you get to where you are?
DNIMAS to me was like a boot camp that trains you to fight in war.  It gave me the tools not just to survive but to conquer what may seem impossible.
How did DNIMAS help you non academically/professionally?
It helped me to be focused on a task, not be discouraged and to admit when you need help.  Learning this saved me from so many hardships.
What activities did you participate in when you weren’t studying?
DNIMAS student association, NSU Dance Theatre, Majestic movements at Gethsemane Fellowship Baptist Church, Pre-Med Society just to name a few.
What was your favorite DNIMAS memory?
My favorite memory was the spring banquet my senior year.  It made me realize that I met so many great people and that I had reached one of my goals in life.
What did you least like about DNIMAS?
I didn’t really like the study sessions so much because I can’t really study with a lot of people around me.
What do you think would be different about your life if you weren’t in DNIMAS?
I would be in debt and I probably would not have the education and the knowledge that I have today.
Do you still keep in contact with people from DNIMAS?
Yes
What advice could you pass on to current DNIMAS scholars?
Do not take this scholarship for granted.  It is a blessing to be paid to go to school for something that you are passionate about.  Many people would love to be in your shoes and I did not realize that until my friends from back home were struggling to go to school and to make ends meet.  This scholarship is a blessing and appreciate the time that you have with one another because you cannot make it by yourself.  Stay encouraged and encourage each other.

Mindy L. Mayes

Posted: November 10th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: students | Tags: , , , , | No Comments »

What year did you graduate?
2007
Where are you from?
Emporia, VA
What was your major?
Biology Pre Professional, Chemistry Minor
Do you have any advanced degrees?
Yes, Master of Pubilc Health (Go IU)
What are you currently doing (professionally)?
Well for some odd reason I believe I have a little nerd in me. I am back in school working on
a Master of Divinity. Prior to this degree I was a project assistant for the Monroe County Long Term Recovery Committee, a project of the United Way of Monroe County. In this position I was able to give literally millions of dollars to people in the Bloomington, IN area who were affected by the 2008 June floods and Sept hurricanes that devastated Monroe County and the State of Indiana.
How would you describe DNIMAS to someone who doesn’t know about the program?
DNIMAS is the Dozoretz National Institute for Mathematics and Sciences. It is a full 4 year
scholarship that provides room, board, books and tuition (that’s right it’s all free!) for those
interested in majoring in a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) related areas. There are many majors to choose from, Physics, Biology, Biology Pre Professional, Mathematics, Optical engineering just to name a few. To get accepted in the program you have to have excelled in high school, been active in your local community as well as do well on the SAT and/or ACT. Now I am sure that we have all heard that nothing in life is free. And that is correct. As a DNIMAS student you will be expected to excel in your coursework at Norfolk State, complete summer internships, volunteer in the local community, and once done at NSU go on to enroll in and complete a graduate degree program. The program is strenuous, but trust me it really does equip you for graduate level work.
How did DNIMAS help you get to where you are?
I’m pretty sure I just answered this question above. DNIMAS has prepared me to reach the
places that I am today. I learned valuable skills from people like Dr. McClain and Mr. Parker.
Neither let me get away with anything. They pushed me, and that pushing has made me a
better person today. I have learned how to manage my time, how to not “burn bridges”, I have also learned that DNIMAS is a community. I know that I can turn to any of my fellow DNIMAS Alum for anything within life. Lastly, I have learned that you don’t pay to go to school. All three of my degrees have been paid for!!!
How did DNIMAS help you non academically/professionally?
DNIMAS has really helped with my time management. When in DNIMAS I knew there were
many requirements that had to be fulfilled. To name a few we had to keep a 3.0 (wasn’t it
boosted to 3.3…there were so many changes during my tenure), attend the mandatory study sessions and even volunteer a certain number of hours a week. I’m sure there was much more but can’t remember all now. I wanted a life outside of DNIMAS and studying, so I had to manage my time wisely.
What activities did you participate in when you weren’t studying?
I was always doing something. I was a member and officer of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc.,
involved in student government, tutor for ACCESS tutorial center and even helped with the
tutoring program at Gethsemane Community Fellowship Baptist Church.
What was your favorite DNIMAS memory?
Sorry Ervin, but when Alfonzo dressed up as you for Halloween. I will never forget that. Who
would have known that the two of you would end up pledging Iota together, that you two would become line brothers. I just have to say lol.
What did you least like about DNIMAS?
Hmmm. Now although in the long run I appreciate these things now, the mandatory study
sessions, begin forced to volunteer (Voluntold as Sharday would say), all the changes Dr.
McClain made when she became the director. I was already doing some of these things. Plus, one of the study session dates conflicted with the sweat box (perspiration cubes for the nerds). Conflicting with the sweat box is not an option.
What do you think would be different about your life if you weren’t in DNIMAS?
I’d be broke and not a proud alum of Norfolk State University (Go Spartans!). All of my friends who have been to school and had to pay for it are paying student loans out the wazoo. I do have a few student loans, but they were minimal and from my masters degree. I don’t expect my payments to be too large. Also, the full scholarship solidified my attending Norfolk State. Truthfully at first I had no desire to attend NSU. Both my brothers went there and I wanted to be different.
Do you still keep in contact with people from DNIMAS?
Of course, DNIMAS is a family and families stick together.
What advice could you pass on to current DNIMAS scholars?
Read any and everything that I have said above. Dr. McClain is serious about what she says, so listen to her. She is wise and she really does care about what is best for the DNIMAS students. Also, I think we sometimes forget but being in DNIMAS is a privilege, not a right. As with most privileges there are things one has to do to keep them (i.e. follow the rules, trust me in the long run you see they are really not that bad).


Da’Shaun A. Joseph

Posted: September 15th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: students | Tags: , , , , , | 1 Comment »

What year did you graduate?
2007
Where are you from?
New Orleans, LA
What was your major?
Computer Engineering
Do you have any advanced degrees?
Yes, Masters in Systems Engineering from George Washington University.
What are you currently doing (professionally)?
Systems Engineer at Lockheed Martin
How would you describe DNIMAS to someone who doesn’t know about the program?
DNIMAS is the only full academic scholarship program at Norfolk State University. It create dynamic opportunities for esteemed students in the STEM field and is one of the most premier academic programs that NSU has to offer.
How did DNIMAS help you get to where you are?
DNIMAS introduced me to the engineering field. Without DNIMAS, I would not have taken an interest in Computer Science or Engineering. Once I became an engineer, the world of possibilities opened drastically.
How did DNIMAS help you non academically/professionally?
DNIMAS helped me learn how to foster a diverse and inclusive mindset that is critical in corporate America.
What activities did you participate in when you weren’t studying?
National Society of Black Engineers, Dynasti Dance Team, SGA, DNIMAS Student Association, Ms. NSBE 2006, Senior Class Queen 2007, Monster DLP, INROADS.
What was your favorite DNIMAS memory?
GRADUATING!!!!!!!!!!
What did you least like about DNIMAS?
Those infamous mandatory study session!!!!
What do you think would be different about your life if you weren’t in DNIMAS?
I would have majored in Mass Communications at Clark Atlanta University.
Do you still keep in contact with people from DNIMAS?
Very few, that is sad and I need to change that!!!
What advice could you pass on to current DNIMAS scholars?
DNIMAS is teaching fundamentals that will be critical in graduate school and corporate America. As irrelevant and tedious as things may seem, they are always done for a reason. Being on a full academic scholarship is a PRIVILEGE and something that is really not common to achieve easily.. As your parents would say, you won’t understand it today but you will 5 years from now.


Sharisse Felton

Posted: September 10th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: students | Tags: , , , , | No Comments »
What year did you graduate?
2007
Where are you from?
Fort Washington, MD
What was your major?
Optical Engineering
Do you have any advanced degrees?
Masters in Electrical Engineering from UMBC
What are you currently doing (professionally)?
I am a program manager for the Department of Defense
How would you describe DNIMAS to someone who doesn’t know about the program?
It’s a great program.
How did DNIMAS help you get to where you are?
It provided me with a great support system and networking opportunities.
How did DNIMAS help you non academically/professionally?
DNIMAS allowed me to meet several wonderful people that I continue to socialize with whom have all become a special part of my life.
What activities did you participate in when you weren’t studying?
NSBE, Goldenkey, tutoring with Norfolk Public Schools, working with VA Beach public schools, STARS, and all the conferences I could attend
What was your favorite DNIMAS memory?
Staying up late at night to study with my fellow DNIMAS students.
What did you least like about DNIMAS?
The mandatory study sessions, I preferred to study late at night or early in the mornings.
What do you think would be different about your life if you weren’t in DNIMAS?
I would have school loans, I wouldn’t have met so many wonderful people.  Some of my best friends I met in DNIMAS.
Do you still keep in contact with people from DNIMAS?
Yes
What advice could you pass on to current DNIMAS scholars?
Take advantage of the opportunities and think long term about the benefits of the program.

Stephen A. Small

Posted: September 9th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: students | Tags: , , , , | 1 Comment »
What year did you graduate?
2007
Where are you from?
Suffolk, VA
What was your major?
Applied Mathematics
Do you have any advanced degrees?
No
What are you currently doing (professionally)?
After 3 years of teaching high school math, I am now a teacher on the Portsmouth campus of Tidewater Community College.
How would you describe DNIMAS to someone who doesn’t know about the program?
DNIMAS is a scholarship program geared towards the sciences. Though some of the meaning of the acronym “DNIMAS” has changed it still provides those who are less represented in the science field a chance to advance. The education and experiences provided through the DNIMAS program makes any participant competitive with any other student from another college or university.
How did DNIMAS help you get to where you are?
First of all, DNIMAS is a full scholarship program. So without a degree, I would not be where I am today. But DNIMAS instilled a work ethic that is beneficial in the work world. Through the various tutoring and mentor programs provided through DNIMAS, I discovered a love not only for math but for education. These programs, along with the classmates and faculty that I met, helped me get to where I am. The relationships from college secured me a job upon graduation, and for that I will forever be grateful to the DNIMAS family.
How did DNIMAS help you non academically/professionally?
DNIMAS helped me network. While not in class I often pursued other activities on campus with my friends, who I met through DNIMAS. As I stated about relationships, a friend’s mom (from DNIMAS) helped me get my first teaching job. DNIMAS, in my opinion, made me a well-rounded individual.
What activities did you participate in when you weren’t studying?
I was active in SGA, the dance team (XClusive), was a tutor for ACCESS and STARS, dorm room step shows, and joined Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc.
What was your favorite DNIMAS memory?
My favorite DNIMAS memory has to be receiving my jacket and medallion. It’s something to be said if you go all four years through the program. I remember my DNIMAS advisor at the time (2003) telling us to look to our left and right, that person wont make it. Talk about striking fear in your heart! But knowing that I made it and completed all requirements for graduation made the experience that much more enjoyable.
What did you least like about DNIMAS?
Not too much, but the mandated hours of community service. Of course I love doing community service but I didn’t agree that a student who has the grades should be kicked out the program for failure to complete hours. But hey, I did mine!
What do you think would be different about your life if you weren’t in DNIMAS?
I wouldn’t have met the people that I met if it wasn’t for DNIMAS. A lot of them I consider family and I couldn’t picture life without them. I also met my biological father as a result of me partaking in an internship that was mandated through DNIMAS. So that experience alone changed my life and it was because of DNIMAS. Professionally, who knows where I would be if it wasn’t for me getting a scholarship to go to school. I do know I’d be in somebody’s debt….so thanks DNIMAS for making me debt free!!
Do you still keep in contact with people from DNIMAS?
Of course! The people I hung out with in school I keep in contact with through phone, facebook, twitter, etc.
What advice could you pass on to current DNIMAS scholars?
Stay focused. The parties, your friends, the job (the one you’re NOT supposed to have) will all be there. Realize your school work is the most important thing while you’re on scholarship. Once you realize that and prioritize your responsibilities, then you are liberty to have all of the fun you want.