In Brief: Students lead efforts to win Retool Your School grant

March 15, 2017

Winston-Salem State University is competing for up to $50,000 in grants as a nominee for Home Depot’s 2017 Home Depot Retool Your School Campus Improvement Grant Program.

Home Depot will award $360,000 in grants to nine Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) with the highest votes. As of Tuesday, March 15, WSSU, pushed by tweets and votes from students, was in second place in its category. The top three vote-getters in each category will receive grants of up to $50,000 for campus improvements.

To vote for WSSU:

 Voting continues through April 16.

Singing RamsSinging Rams hit the road for spring break

The Singing Rams are hitting the road for spring break, with seven performances in four states and Washington, D.C., starting on Saturday, March 11.

The Burke Singers and Schola Cantorum, under the director of Maestra D’Walla Simmons-Burke, will perform in the following locations as part of the 2017 Spring Tour:

  • Saturday, March 11: Sargent Memorial Presbyterian Church, Washington, D.C.
  • Sunday, March 12: Rehoboth Baptist Church, Washington, D.C.
  • Sunday, March 12: Fort Foote Baptist Church, Fort Washington, Maryland
  • Wednesday, March 15: Salem United Methodist Church, New York City
  • Thursday, March 16: Antioch Baptist Church, Cleveland (sponsored by Cuyahoga Community College)
  • Friday, March 17: Trinity Baptist Church, Columbus, Ohio
  • Sunday, March 19: Mount Calvary Baptist Church, Shelby, North Carolina

The accompanist for the tour is Dr. Myron Brown. The students will perform again in Winston-Salem for the annual Spring Concert and Scholarship Benefit at 4 p.m. on Sunday, March 26, at First Baptist Church, 700 N. Highland Ave.

Surprise scholarships awarded to 26 high school seniors

WSSU trustees, WSSU Foundation board members and alumni visited high schools across North Carolina, surprising seniors with the news that they have received one of WSSU’s most prestigious scholarships.

The visits, between Feb. 27 and March 6, included stops at high schools in Charlotte, Durham, Greensboro and Wilmington. The 26 seniors, who have applied and been accepted to WSSU for fall, are recipients of the Chancellor Scholarship, a merit-based award that pays for all tuition and fees not covered by state or federal grant sources or other scholarships. The scholarship also includes a book stipend of up to $650 per term.

Those surprising students were: Dr. William U. Harris, chair of the WSSU Board of Trustees; Trustees Coretta Bigelow and Kelvin Farmer; WSSU Foundation Board of Directors Terry Griffin and Bill Miller; and WSSU alumni Chris Wilson and Patti Sanders-Smith.

Diggs Gallery director named to Time magazine list

Endia Beal, director of the Diggs Gallery at WSSU, has been named to Time magazine’s list of “12 African American Photographers You Should Know Right Now.”

“Her work is outstanding in documenting and narrating social issues in an often sardonic manner that is always respectful to her subjects,” writes Azu Nwagbogu, director African Artists’ Foundation, in his spotlight on Beal.

The gallery offers one of the largest exhibition spaces dedicated to the arts of Africa and the African Diaspora in the Southeast.


WSSU students qualify for Honda Campus All-Star Challenge

For the 18th consecutive time, WSSU students will compete at the Honda Campus All-Star Challenge (HCASC) National Championship Tournament.

WSSU’s team will be one of 48 teams competing at the tournament, which will run April 8-11 in Torrance, California. The tournament showcases the academic prowess of the brightest students from America’s Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs). The teams are competing for grants from Honda. The champion receives a $75,000 grant.

Stephanie Street, a senior biology major from Rural Hall, is the team captain. Other team members are: Brandi Clark, a junior biology major from Concord; Bria Griffin, a junior exercise science major from Raleigh; and Tyree Hooks, a junior accounting major from Goldsboro. The team is coached by Cynthia Grant, division program manager of University College and Lifelong Learning (UCaLL).

WSSU has qualified for the tournament for 18 consecutive years and 19 times overall. Students have brought home $67,000 in grants.

Student appears on Fox’s drama ‘Star”

Justus Pickett, a WSSU senior and running back on the 2016 football team, made an appearance on the Fox television drama “Star” on March 8.

Pickett, an economic major from Charlotte, said he was offered an appearance after producers for the show saw his photo on Instagram. On the show, he was part of the entourage of music producer Big Boy. During the 2016 season, Pickett had 61 carries for 298 yards and scored three touchdowns.

In Brief is compiled monthly by WSSU media relations.

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