ATE Central is pleased to announce a new feature in both the ATE Impacts blog and the ATE Central Connection (our monthly newsletter) called "I Am ATE," which showcases an ATE PI, staff member, industry partner, or other ATE stakeholder. We are excited to help spread the word about the wonderful people who are at the core of the ATE community and the innovative work everyone is doing.
Name: Tynisha S. Ferguson, MA
Title: Communication & Technology Specialist
Institution: Florence-Darlington Technical College
Center name: SCATE Center/Mentor-Connect
URL: https://www.scate.org and http://www.mentor-connect.org
ATE Central: How did you become involved with ATE?
Ferguson: After I completed my service as an AmeriCorps VISTA (Volunteers in Service to America), I realized I wanted to continue a career in public service. I wanted to work within the grant world and work within a program that would give me national exposure to various industries, initiatives, and projects. I am also extremely good at utilizing technology and had previous experience covering STEM-related topics, and from the time I was in high school have loved all things communications. Because of my background and interests, I felt inclined to apply for the Communication & Technology Specialist position at the South Carolina Advanced Technological Education (SCATE) Center of Excellence. Prior to this, I had no knowledge of the Advanced Technological Education (ATE) program or the National Science Foundation (NSF), but after only a few months, I was really impressed by how much the ATE program has essentially impacted almost every industry with its research projects.
ATE Central: Tell us about the goals of your project or center.
Ferguson: I work for SCATE Center, located on the campus of Florence-Darlington Technical College in the Southeastern Institute of Manufacturing and Technology facility in Florence, SC. My center has various initiatives that have been implemented and sustained, such as the Mentor-Connect, Teaching Technicians, and Build Your Own (BYO) Video initiatives. Each initiative has their own goals. However, the main goal of the SCATE Center is to expand excellence in technician education locally, regionally, and nationally by working alongside students, educators, and industry leaders to promote quality education that prepares workforce-ready technicians in advanced technologies that drive the American economy.
Mentor-Connect is our biggest initiative and our overall goal is to offer transformational professional development experiences for two-year college STEM faculty. Mentor-Connect offers one-on-one STEM faculty team mentoring, curated technical resources, and instruction to help two-year college faculty prepare competitive proposals to the National Science Foundation's Advanced Technological Education (NSF ATE) program. Mentor-Connect recently begin offering Second Chance Mentoring and Moving up Mentoring along with the New-to-ATE mentoring for STEM Faculty. To learn more about the SCATE Center and its initiatives, click here.