Dr. Gregory Goins, associate professor of biology at North Carolina A&T State University, has been named a White House Champion of Change.
He is one of 11 faculty and staff members from historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) who will be honored in Washington today for effectively promoting college completion and student success at HBCUs.
Goins organized the Integrative Biomathematical Learning and Empowerment Network for Diversity (iBLEND) program at N.C. A&T. iBLEND represents a partnership between faculty mentors from various science, mathematics, and engineering disciplines working together to retain undergraduates in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM).
In addition, iBLEND mentors help students prepare for future post-graduate opportunities and careers primarily at the interface between biology and mathematics. Since 2010, over 100 undergraduates from North Carolina A&T State University have completed research internships collaborating with iBLEND.
“Dr. Goins is bridging a critical gap in the preparation of our students as future scientists, facing challenging careers that require the application of mathematics to solve complex biological problems,” said Dr. Mary Smith, chair of the biology department.
“He has been at the forefront in increasing the number of biology and computational science students who gain early biomathematical research experiences, participate in summer internships in national laboratories, and later enter competitive graduate programs.
“He is a transformational leader in our department. Around him is a network of faculty who are building on his work to change the way that we are educating biologists at North Carolina A&T.”
In developing the iBLEND program, Goins collaborated with Dr. Smith, Dr. Vinaya Kelkar, and Dr. Catherine White, all of the biology department, and three faculty members from the math department: Dr. Mingxiang Chen, Dr. Dominic Clemence, and Dr. Thomas Redd.
The Champions of Change program was created as an opportunity for the White House to feature individuals doing extraordinary things to empower and inspire members of their communities.
To learn more about the White House Champions of Change program, visit http://www.whitehouse.gov/champions. Follow the conversation at #HBCUchamps.