My sister, Tenderly Diaz, gets a lot of opportunities as a STEM Champion working with the HUD STEM Innovation Network, such as travelling from our home in Hampton, Virginia to our state capitol, Richmond, or to Indiana or Georgia. Because I would like to travel and meet new people, I decided to follow in her footsteps.
So in Fall 2016, after our family had spoken with Dr. Ronnie Lowenstein, the Founder of Global NetGeneration of Youth (NGY), I did my own research and learned about the opportunities she was offering us to join NGY and represent our HUD STEM Innovation Network from Hampton as NetGeneration of Youth STEM Ambassadors and Cyberjournalists. We were excited when she invited us to the 2016 Minorities in Education Third Annual Forum in Washington, D.C. At this event, as NGY Cyberjournalists, we could learn from and interview important adults who know a lot about energy and then we could share our new understandings with others in presentations and in writing.
I soon began to prepare myself by researching and taking notes on energy websites that I found. I must admit that I initially thought this was not going to be much fun, sitting in a room with a bunch of boring old people. To my surprise, it was not boring! At the City Club, so many of the MIE presenters revealed interesting stories about their own childhood and I learned that many were actually my age when they discovered what they wanted to be.
We also were able to speak directly with some of the guests in between the formal presentations. Five of the people we interviewed who impressed us a lot include:
Dr. Dot Harris, (former) Director of the of the U. S. Department of Energy’s Office of Economic Impact and Diversity inspiring NGYCyberjournalists Tenderly Diaz (left) and Taylore Livingston (right).
Dr. Penn-Marshall who is a Vice President for Research and Associate Provost at Hampton University near our home flanked by NGY Cyberjournalists Taylore Livingston (left) and Tenderly Diaz (right).
Dr. Lezli Baskerville President -CEO, National Association for Equal Opportunity In Higher Education being interviewed by NGY Cyberjournalists Tenderly Diaz and Taylore Livingston.
Dr. J’tai Hart, who was first a model, but then a nuclear engineer and works at the U.S. Department of Energy. Dr. J’Tai Hart hugs NGY Cyberjournalists Tenderly Diaz (left) & Taylore Livingston (right).
Derek Watkins, A.K.A Fonzworth Bentley, who is a philanthropist, actor, Hip Hop musician and author, but who, after graduating with a Degree in Biology from Moorehouse College, worked in a genetics lab before becoming famous as an entrepreneur. From Left) NGY Founder Dr Ronnie Lowenstein, Parent Liaison Mrs. Mary McBride, Derek Watkins & NGY Cyberjournalists Tenderly Diaz & Taylore Livingston. All five people are wonderful; what inspired me the most was their talking about the positive people in their life who encouraged them and are still in their circle.
- Dr. J’tai Hart also taught me that being beautiful doesn’t always mean your interests and careers have to be based on beauty and hair; “You can be anything you choose to be.”
- Derek Watkins impressed me with his message that ‘You can come up from nothing to having your own business and inspiring other people to move in your direction and look up to you.’
So now after this experience, I can now admit that I had a wonderful time going to the U.S. Minorities in Energy Forum and serving as a Global NetGeneration of Youth STEM Ambassador & Cyberjournalist. Next time, I’ll know to never doubt trying new things.
Below are other Photos and Quotes I captured at the U.S Department of Energy, Minorities in Energy Year III Anniversary Forum, December 2016.
Dr. Ernest Moniz, (Former) Secretary of Energy
“We all need to do more to engage with women and minorities in the energy field.”
Dr. Ronnie Lowenstein, President of Lowenstein & Associates, Inc and Founder of Global NetGeneration of Youth
“Science and Technology are tools of transformation, and private public partnerships are the strategies to advance the transformations.”
Dr. Ronnie Lowenstein inducted as a 2016 Minorities in Energy Ambassador by (Former) Secretary of Energy Dr. Ernest J. Moniz (Left) and by (Former) Director, Office of Economic Impact and Diversity, Dr. Dot Harris.
David Steward, Chairman and Founder World Wide Technology, Inc. and Entrepreneurial Author of Doing Business in the Good Book
“Only by engaging diverse talents and cultivating creativity can we achieve a competitive edge and ensure we have the next generation of Innovation. … As in jazz, improvisation is a big part of Innovation. … Be guided by Faith and recall scripture Luke 6:45 -- ‘From the abundance of the heart, let the mouth speak.’”
2015 MIE Ambassador David Steward welcomes Dr. Ronnie Lowenstein as 2016 MIE Ambassador.
The Honorable Sheila Jackson Lee, Congresswoman from Houston and Chair of the CBC Energy Caucus
“We are here for the public good.”
Dr. Victor McCrary, VP for Research and Development, Morgan State U
“Science and Research are critical to America’s Future; we are committed to cultivating the next generation of scientists, technologists and innovators.”
Dr McCrary encourages the NGY Cyberjournalist Team from Hampton’s HUD STEM Innovation Network: NGY Cyberjournalist Tenderly Diaz, Parent Liaison Mrs. Mary McBride, NGY Founder Dr. Ronnie Lowenstein, & NGY Cyberjournalist Taylore Livingston.
Dr. Dot Harris, (Former) Assistant Secretary of Energy shares her philosophy with NGY Cyberjournalists Tenderly Diaz and Taylore Livingston
“We must ask: What are we doing for others? Remember that A life of service is a life well lived...”
Dr. Kristina Johnson, Founder of Cube Hydro Partners
“Embracing diversity means embracing diversity in race, color, creed, sex or thought. We must start early, recruit like a Coach and cultivate our next generation of Energy Innovators.”
Albert Williams, VP at Chevron
“Chevron investments go beyond recruitment of a diverse workforce to establishing an inclusive work environment. It is the ‘Chevron Way’. To Build Bridges to the Future and ensure educational and economic empowerment.”
Michelle Holiday, an enrolled member of the Iowa Tribe of Oklahoma, currently President of Michelle Holiday & Associates after 23 year career at Edison International
“You can have a very effective program on paper but, at the end of the day, you need people who can lead a diverse team.”
Robert Gee, Thought leader for the energy industry for over 30 years, President of Gee Strategies Group LLC, and President of Asian Americans in Energy, the Environment and Commerce (AE2C), and 2015 MIE Ambassador.
“Energy is the least diverse sector of the government, second to the clergy. We need to understand the multiple challenges faced and angst felt by those in the working class, where none of the parents went to college. We need to help those students get their first job. We need to recognize that many of the barriers are internal.”
Charles Wilson, President, CW Consulting, LLC & former Nuclear Operations Trainer for the U.S .Navy
“Energy and manufacturing offer rich economic opportunities that can eliminate poverty for those often underserved people of color, women and veterans Through energy and manufacturing certification courses, critical thinking curriculum of the Legacy Initiative, mentorships and partnerships, we are creating STEM Education pipelines that provide our country with the Qualified Skilled Workforce it needs.”
Paul Bernard, VP Enterprise Community Partners
“Success comes when you start with the end in mind; strong cities will have strong diverse thriving communities linked to good education, good jobs, transit and health care.”
Dr. Ellen Williams, Director Advanced Research Projects Agency- Energy, U.S. Department of Energy (Mission Innovation)
“ARPA-E looks at early stage innovative ideas and then invests in the breakthrough innovative technologies that can be transformational. We ask: if it works, will it matter? Can we drive commercialization so technology will advance our country’s economic prosperity, national security and environmental well-being?”
Johnny C. Taylor, President and CEO Thurgood Marshall College Fund
“Education must engage youth from diverse communities, inspire them as future STEM Professionals, and provide them with economic opportunities.”
Dr. Karl Reid, Executive Director of National Society of Black Engineeers (NSBE)
“We must address the reality of “ diversity:” our country is BROWNING AND GRAYING at once.”
Mrs. Sheila Boyington, President of Thinking Media –Learning Blade
“We are dedicated to creating awareness of STEM careers by tying them to school curriculum.”
Dr. Elizabeth Sherwood-Randall, (Former Deputy Secretary of Energy)
“America’s national and economic security depends on innovation. At the Department of Energy, we believe that innovation is driven by diverse perspectives; so one of our top priorities is expanding the STEM talent pipeline to include people who bring new ideas to the table. An important part of this effort is focused on women and girls See her video message: “Investing in Our Future by Empowering Women and Girls in STEM...” See her video: https://energy.gov/articles/investing-our-future-empowering-women-and-girls-stem
Dr. Elizabeth Sherwood Randall shares passion for public service with 2016 MIE Ambassador Dr. Ronnie Lowenstein and Ms. Helen Lowenstein, LCSW at Walter Reed Hospital.
Dr. Robert Boege, Executive Director of The Alliance for Science, Technology, Research in America (ASTRA)
“The future of America is dependent on its innovation capacity.”
As ASTRA’s Futurist, and newly inducted Ambassador to Minorities in Energy, Dr. Lowenstein agrees:“
“We must innovate or abdicate our leadership edge.”
Dr. Ronald Mason, President University of District of Columbia“
“There's no shortage of great ideas. We need to address the fragmentation of efforts, coordinate and collaborate to realize our visions for an Innovation Nation.”
(From left) Dr. Ronald Mason, President of UDC, Dr. Ronnie Lowenstein, 2016 MIE Ambassador and Futurist to ASTRA, Dr. Robert Boege, Executive Director of ASTRA.
See article authored by Educator from Virginia’s State STEM Magnet High School:
"Inspiring Diversity and Evolving an Innovation Nation at the 2016 Minorities in Energy III Annual Forum", by Mrs. Lisa Wu, Lab Director of Oceanography and Geophysical Sciences, Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology
SEE article authored by the Global NetGeneration of Youth Team from Virginia STEM Magnet School, Thomas Jefferson High School for Science & Technology:
"The Present and Future Enriched by a Diverse Energy Workforce: Reflections of the 2016 Minorities in Energy III Annual Forum", by Ria Sonawane and Sarah Crossen, Global NetGeneration of Youth Cyberjournalists from Thomas Jefferson HS for Science & Technology, in Virginia
See two articles authored by the Global NetGeneration of Youth Team from HUD’s STEM Innovation Network in Hampton:
1. "A STEM-fluential Celebration of the 2016 Minorities in Energy III Annual Forum: A Parent's Perspective", by Ms. Mary McBride, Parent Liaison to HUD STEM Innovation Network and to Global NetGeneration of Youth
2. "A STEM-fluential Celebration of the 2016 Minorities in Energy III Annual Forum: A Youth Perspective", by Global NetGeneration of Youth Cyberjournalist Tenderly Diaz