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Black Tie International:
Duke Energy Foundation
(From L to R): Dr. Johnson O. Akinleye, NCCU Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs; Ms. Indira Everett, Duke Energy District Manager; Dr. Caesar R. Jackson, NCCU Professor of Mathematics and Physics
(From L to R): Dr. Johnson O. Akinleye, NCCU Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs; Ms. Indira Everett, Duke Energy District Manager; Dr. Caesar R. Jackson, NCCU Professor of Mathematics and Physics


Durham, N.C. – Duke Energy Foundation has awarded North Carolina Central University (NCCU) $135,000 to support a Three-Plus-Two Bachelor of Science Dual Degree program in physics and electrical engineering in partnership with North Carolina State University (NC State).


Established in June 2015, the dual-degree program aims to increase access, diversity and enrollment in the science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) disciplines at both NCCU and NC State.


The funding from Duke Energy Foundation is part of the organization’s support of workforce development and economic development initiatives. The students, known as Duke Energy Scholars, will be educated and trained in the field of engineering, particularly electrical engineering, and will be job-ready upon graduation. The program will help prepare more individuals of color and women for the electrical engineering field, which is one of the fastest growing job sectors in the United States. 


“We are proud to support this collaboration between North Carolina Central University and N.C. State University that encourages diversity in engineering,” said Indira Everett, Duke Energy’s district manager. “This program demonstrates their commitment to equipping more student with the skills needed to compete in an emerging sector of our economy.”


“North Carolina Central University is grateful to Duke Energy Foundation for its generosity in providing resources that will assist our students who desire to pursue careers in the STEM field,” said Harriet Frink Davis, Ph.D., vice chancellor for Institutional Advancement. “This new initiative and partnership with Duke Energy will continue building the educational foundation for our ‘techno-scholars,’ whom Chancellor Dr. Debra Saunders-White has invested in over the past three years.”


The Three-Plus-Two Dual Degree program has a pipeline of NCCU students now being advised and tracked into the electrical engineering program at NC State. The electrical engineering specialization equips students with skills to design, produce, test and supervise electrical equipment for companies in the Research Triangle Park, throughout North Carolina and around the county.


“Duke Energy Foundation’s ongoing commitment and increased investment in the STEM disciplines will enable North Carolina Central University to recruit, retain and graduate talented students from underrepresented populations who are highly marketable and skilled for the jobs of tomorrow,” said Dr. Johnson O. Akinleye, Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs.


North Carolina Central University prepares students to succeed in the global marketplace. Flagship programs include the sciences, technology, nursing, education, law, business and the arts. Founded in 1910 as a liberal arts college for African-Americans, NCCU remains committed to diversity in higher education. Our alumni excel in a wide variety of academic and professional fields. Visit


Gerard Mc Keon and Joyce Brooks.  Photo by:  Rose Billings/

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