Morehouse College professors J.K. Haynes ’64 and Ulrica Wilson were recently named recipients of the highest national STEM mentoring award presented by the White House.
Haynes and Wilson were among 140 individuals and organizations honored on June 25 with Presidential Awards for Excellence in Science, Mathematics and Engineering Mentoring (PAESMEM). The awards are presented by the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, and the National Science Foundation (NSF).
During a visit to Washington, D.C., last week, each recipient received a Presidential certificate, participated in discussions on STEM and STEM education priorities, and received $10,000 from NSF, which manages PAESMEM programs on behalf of the White House.
“I am honored to express the nation’s gratitude for the tireless dedication that these men and women bring to educating the next generation of scientists, engineers, and mathematicians,” said Michael Kratsios, deputy assistant to the President and deputy U.S. chief technology officer. “Each day, more and more jobs require a strong foundation in STEM education, so the work that you do as teachers and mentors helps ensure that all students can have access to limitless opportunities and the brightest of futures.”
Haynes, the College’s David Packard Professor in Science, has been at Morehouse since 1978. A biology professor, Haynes served as a department chair and later dean of the Division of Science and Mathematics from 1999 to 2016. He has served on two National Academy of Science committees, the Committee on Equal Opportunities in Science and Engineering, and advisory committees for Biology Directorate, and Government Performance and Results. Haynes has also served as Morehouse’s director of the Office of Health Professions, and chair of the Morehouse College Honors Program.
The EDGE Program (Enhancing Diversity in Graduate Education), where Wilson co-directed from 2011 to 2017, was honored in the organization category. EDGE seeks to strengthen the ability of women students to successfully complete doctoral programs in the mathematical sciences and place more women in visible leadership roles in the mathematics community.
Wilson is an associate professor of mathematics at Morehouse and was presented with the College’s 2016-2017 Vulcan Teaching Excellence Award. The award annually goes to an outstanding professor who demonstrates strong academic skills in the classroom and provides leadership and support in other areas of campus life.
“Dr. Haynes and Dr. Wilson are great exemplars of why Morehouse is the number one producer of black male baccalaureate recipients who go on to earn the doctorate in STEM fields," said Dr. Michael E. Hodge, Interim Provost at Morehouse College. "We are proud of their accomplishments and grateful they chose Morehouse as the place to develop and share their talents."