A recent Florida A&M University engineering graduate with a 3.9 grade point average was rated zero on a scale of one-to-10 by a hiring manager in terms of his employability with the firm. The hiring manager did not think the academic programs at the school, named "College of the Year" by Time magazine in 1997, provided the young professional the technology courses that would ensure success in the position.
This story was related by one of three dozen academic professionals attending a brainstorming session last month sponsored by the United Negro College Fund's (UNCF) Frederick D. Patterson Research Institute. The discussion focused on the critical issues that affect the success of educational pursuits among African Americans.
By the end of the three-hour session, many in the group cited the need for more research on African American …