Sponsored by Bristol-Myers Squibb, this scholarship provides scholarship awards to high achieving black students who demonstrate academic excellence, leadership, a commitment to innovation and are pursuing a degree in Business or STEM at a Historically Black College or University (HBCU).
North Carolina A&T State University
Abeku Abercrombie is a Junior Biology student at North Carolina A&T State University. There he serves as Mister Junior, which is a community service co-chair position for the Junior Class Council. He wants to use this position as an outlet to help underrepresented young people like himself. Throughout school, Abeku rarely had instructors or role models who looked like him and he found that to be very discouraging. “I do not want the next generation of students to go through that,” he says. One way he is doing this is through his mentorship program, the Middle Men Mentorship Program, as a way to help the students of the Middle College at A&T with the transition from high school to college. After graduation Abeku plans to obtain a doctoral degree in neuroscience and research chronic traumatic encephalopathy, a disease that plagues professional athletes and war veterans alike. Once he has fulfilled a career in research, he plans to start a career in secondary education and become a role model for underrepresented teens. This way, the students he teaches will have an instructor who can provide real world connections to the things they teach.
Kumasi Bangudi-Smothers is a rising Junior finance major attending Howard University. He has a strong interest within trading and capital investment, particularly as it applies to his community. There is a financial literacy gap in the Black community that he wants to contribute to ameliorating. To chase this lengthy goal, he has dedicated himself to gaining knowledge and experience within the financial sector, and with this gained wisdom, create Black owned and Black serving financial institutions. These institutions will become a beacon of education and monetary advancement. As science and technology shape the future of this field, he is also extremely passionate about the prospects of integrating finance and computer science and intend to fund and facilitate youth programs that introduce and teach Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics principles. The professional steps showcased on his resume are a reflection of his devotion to these ambitions.
Janiya Brooks is a rising sophomore honors biology major, chemistry minor student on a premed track at the illustrious Howard University. Janiya graduated from Charles H. Flowers High School in Prince George’s County, Maryland in May of 2019 as a Science and Technology Student. Currently she serves as a research intern at the Howard University College of Medicine, studying the neurological effects of Pediatric HIV/AIDS. She is also a member of the Comprehensive Medical Mentoring Program, and the Howard University Health Professions Society. She volunteers with Westphalia environmental clean-up crew, Be My Eyes (aid to blind and low vision individuals), and the So Others Might Eat nonprofit organization. She is also a Williams Franklin Scholar and holds scholarship honors from various organizations. Janiya’s future includes becoming a pediatric cardiologist and opening her own medical practice in her hometown of Prince George’s County, Maryland.
Ashlynn Gray is a junior at Spelman College, majoring in Health Science. Ashlynn’s passion is community health; she plans to attend Medical School upon graduating in 2022. Ashlynn is committed to working with young people to ultimately ensure they are prepared to lead healthy lifestyles based on culturally relevant and timely health decisions. As she treats patients, she will help close the health disparities gap in these minority communities. Currently, Ashlynn serves on the Minority Association of Pre-Medical Students executive board as chapter liaison at Spelman. Additionally, during Spelman’s Annual Health Fair, Ashlynn gave a presentation on anemia and its prevalence in the African American community. This past summer, Ashlynn was selected as a Summer Health Professions Education Program scholar at McGovern Medical School, where she engaged in daily case scenarios to gain simulated hands-on learning in a hospital/ medical environment.
Ke’von Hamilton is a junior Kinesiology major from Milwaukee, Wisconsin and currently attends Morehouse College in Atlanta, Georgia. He aspires to become a Physician to bridge the gap between the minority communities and medicine. As a young Black man, he feels it is his duty to energize, encourage, and influence the youth in his community. “The possibility of a child looking up to me as a health professional rather than an athlete is what truly solidified my interest to become a role model in the medical field,” he says. He wants people of color to be able to look at a reflection of themselves in the doctor’s office. Losing his mother and grandmother to health disparities affecting the Black community has made his road into medicine more meaningful and impactful for his life.
Danielle Harris is a junior at Hampton University, where she is majoring in Communicative Sciences and Disorders. Her interest in this field began during the fall 2019 semester, when she had the opportunity to shadow a Speech Pathologist. Danielle has a passion for working with children, and her long-term goal is to help children with language and speech abnormities overcome those barriers and discover their voices so that they can live their best lives. After graduating from college, Danielle will attend graduate school to earn her master’s degree in Speech Pathology. In the future, she aspires to earn a doctoral degree. When she isn’t busy studying, Danielle participates in organizations on campus, she coaches children in gymnastics, and enjoys spending time with her friends and family. Danielle is a dedicated, hardworking, and loving young woman who enjoys putting a smile on others’ faces and is excited for her future.
Pierce Hodges is a Sophomore Honors Biology major, 1920 Leadership Scholar, and 2020 ELC Bristol Myers Squibb Scholar at Howard University. Pierce graduated from The William Penn Charter School, Philadelphia in May of 2019. He served as the Jack and Jill of America Eastern Region Treasurer and Founder of the annual Cheryl Irving Student Diversity Conference in Philadelphia. Pierce is the immediate past Freshman Council President of the Howard University College of Arts and Sciences and member of the Freshman Leadership Academy. He was recently elected Executive Treasurer for the Howard University College of Arts and Sciences. He is currently a microbiology research assistant in the Howard University Medical School and is a Campus Master Plan Focus Group committee leader. He plans to pursue Medicine and Health Systems Management and Real Estate as his professional career.
Xavier University of Louisiana
Jordyn Jackson is a senior at the illustrious Xavier University of Louisiana. In May 2021, she will receive her Bachelor of Science in Accounting with a minor in Business Administration. Shortly after, she will attend graduate school to obtain a master’s degree in Accounting and start her preparation for the CPA exam. In her profession, she aims to bridge the gap of African American females in the accounting profession and also show her community that there are other ways to be successful. She desires to educate her community about the opportunities in accounting. Being an expert in her career field will help her mentor other individuals that look like her and lift as she climbs.
Fort Valley State University
Jhavani Mezier is a Senior business management major at Fort Valley State University. Jhavani is originally from Queens, New York and now resides in Temple, Georgia. Jhavani is in multiple leadership positions on campus as well as competing on the FVSU track and cross-country teams. Jhavani aspires to become an attorney as well as a business owner, and is a member of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity Incorporated, Boys to Men Mentorship program and was selected as a Howard Pre-law Summer Enrichment Program Scholar.
Sierra Williams-McLeod is a Senior Biochemistry major/Spanish minor at the illustrious Hampton University in Hampton, Virginia. Sierra holds various leadership positions at Hampton, including serving as President of Academic eXploration and Outreach in Neuroscience, Historian of Chemistry Club, and co-founder of Pirate Pantry, an on-campus food and essential item pantry for students. She is also a McNair scholar and a member of the Beta Kappa Chi Scientific Honor Society. Sierra takes great pride in serving her community and was recognized as a 2020 American Heart Association emPOWERED to Serve Scholar for her service efforts in promoting health equity.
Sierra is now in her second year NIH BP-ENDURE Research Fellowship through Washington University at St. Louis, where she is investigating male/female survival outcomes in kidney and brain cancer. Upon graduation, Sierra hopes to enter a doctoral program to fulfill her dream of becoming a neuroscientist.