Dr. Irving Pressley McPhail, president and CEO of the National Action Council for Minorities in Engineering (NACME), received a Doctor of Engineering Degree from Polytechnic Institute of New York University.
DEARBORN, Mich., May 24, 2010 — Dr. Irving Pressley McPhail, President and CEO of the National Action Council for Minorities in Engineering, Inc. (NACME), addressed the 2010 graduating class of the Polytechnic Institute of New York University during this year's commencement ceremony, held at Radio City Music Hall on Tuesday, May 18. Dr. McPhail serves on the Board of Directors of the Society of Manufacturing Engineers (SME) Education Foundation and has been instrumental in furthering STEM education.
Speaking to the recipients of bachelor's, master's and doctoral degrees, McPhail emphasized the strength that diversity brings to NYU-Poly's academic mission of fostering invention, innovation and engineering – i2e. He said: "Increasing diversity in STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) opens the doors for new approaches to solving problems and allows for new ways of thinking and, therefore, the potential for greatness."
"Looking over this graduating class, I see diversity in its most expansive definition," McPhail said. "The contribution of diversity to the i2e equation may, at first, appear incongruous. Too many leaders and policymakers have failed to recognize, or perhaps, to admit that diversity drives innovation and that its absence imperils our designs, our products, and, most of all, our creativity—all components of competitiveness."
McPhail was also awarded an honorary engineering degree presented to him by NYU-Poly President Jerry Hultin and Trustee Charles Hincaty. Through the degree, McPhail was recognized as a leader of education and education policy and cited for his continuous work in nurturing a generation of engineers.
During the presentation Hincaty cited McPhail's accomplishments in academia and praised his established position as a, "well-respected educational leader who has devoted his professional career to ensuring that underrepresented minority students achieve academic opportunities."
"By your scholarship and your deeds, you have prepared the path for the next generation to solve unprecedented engineering challenges that face our planet. Under your vital leadership, the National Action Council for Minorities in Engineering brings the strength of diversity to America's engineering schools. Thanks to your dedication and your wisdom, these highly educated students become leaders who protect and grow our economy and our collective future," added Hincaty.
Earlier this year the Society of Manufacturing Engineers Education Foundation and The National Action Council for Minorities in Engineering, Inc. (NACME) announced a new scholarship, the NACME/SME-EF Scholarship Program. The new scholarship provides an award to one student at $5,000 each year for two years toward the cost of an engineering education. The new scholarship was created to reward academic excellence and promote achievement in an engineering and/or technical discipline.
NACME has distributed applications for the new scholarship to selected NACME partner institutions that offer manufacturing engineering programs. They will screen and review applications, nominate scholars to the SME Education Foundation for final selections, disburse payments, monitor enrollment and track academic progress, and develop a selection timeline with a representative of the SME Education Foundation.
The SME Education Foundation – celebrating its 30th Anniversary this year, has invested over $4.5 million in youth programs, helping over 10,000 young people to explore careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM); granted over $4.2 million in scholarships to students studying manufacturing-related programs and invested $17.3 million in grants to thirty-five (35) colleges and universities to develop industry-driven curricula.
About NACME and NYU-Poly:Since its inception over 35-years-ago, NACME has stayed true to its mission: to provide leadership and support for the national effort to increase the representation of successful African American, American Indian and Latino women and men in science, technology, engineering and math-based careers.
NACME alumni hold leadership positions in industry, medicine, law, education and government. With funding from corporate and individual donors, NACME has supported more than 22,000 students with more than $114 million in scholarships and other support, and currently has more than 1,300 scholars at 50 partner institutions across the country. Through a partnership with the National Academy Foundation (NAF) and Project Lead The Way (PLTW) NACME has helped launch a national network of urban-centered, open enrollment, high-school level engineering academies that will provide all students with a strong science and math education so that they will be college-ready for engineering study.
Polytechnic Institute of New York University (formerly Polytechnic University), an affiliate of New York University, is one of New York City's most comprehensive schools of engineering, applied sciences, technology, and research, and is rooted in a 156-year tradition of invention, innovation, and entrepreneurship: i2e.
The institution, founded in 1854, is one of the nation's oldest private engineering schools. In addition to its main campus at MetroTech Center in downtown Brooklyn, it offers programs at sites throughout the region and around the globe. NYU-Poly has centers in Long Island, Manhattan and Westchester County; globally, it has programs in Israel, China and will be an integral part of NYU's campus in Abu Dhabi opening in autumn 2010.
About the SME Education Foundation:The Society of Manufacturing Engineers (SME) Education Foundation – created in 1979, is dedicated to the advancement of manufacturing education and preparing the next generation of manufacturing engineers and technologists. Thanks to the generosity of its partners including corporations, organizations, foundations and individual donors, the Foundation has awarded more than $29 million since 1980 in awards, scholarships and youth programs. For more information visit www.smeef.org, for advanced manufacturing careers at www.CareerME.org and our award-winning web site designed for young people – manufacturingiscool.com.