Speaker to call for more CSE diversity

Students of color in the college have made up about 12 percent since 2005.

Laura Sievert

The number of black students in the College of Science and Engineering hasnâÄôt changed in five years, but a group of University of Minnesota students is taking active steps to bring that number up.

To help achieve this goal, the University branch of the National Society of Black Engineers will be hosting NSBE Executive Director Carl Mack, who will speak Tuesday afternoon at the Mechanical Engineering Building.

Since MackâÄôs installment as the fourth NSBE director in 2005, the enrollment in the organization has increased from about 13,000 to about 36,000.

The president of the UniversityâÄôs chapter of NSBE, Eyassu Rumicho, said MackâÄôs motivational skills are what led to that increase, and what he hopes will lead to an increase in the UniversityâÄôs numbers.

âÄúHe is so persuasive,âÄù Rumicho said. âÄúOne of the reasons we are hosting him is to try to encourage more students to go into science and engineering, particularly engineering.âÄù

Since 2005, the percentage of students of color enrolled in the College of Science and Engineering  has not changed, according to the UniversityâÄôs Office of Institutional Research. With the exception of very slight dips and spikes from year to year, the enrollment of students of color has remained about 12 percent of the total.

This year, 914 students made up the incoming class.

NSBE organizes events, speakers and professional trips and visits middle and high schools, encouraging students of color to go into engineering.

Mack received a Bachelor of Science degree in mechanical engineering from Mississippi State University, and, on May 8, was awarded an honorary Doctor of Science degree by Clarkson University. He is also a Life Member of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People.

Mack will be speaking 1 p.m Tuesday in the Mechanical Engineering Building. The event is open to all students.