President Jenkins, Alumna Katherine Johnson Recognized as Champions of Change

3/26/2018
President Jenkins, Alumna Katherine Johnson Recognized as Champions of Change

INSTITUTE, W.Va. – West Virginia State University (WVSU) President Anthony L. Jenkins as well as noted alumna Katherine Johnson were honored Saturday as “Champions of Change” by Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. Charleston-Institute Alumnae Chapter.

Jenkins and Johnson, as well as other WVSU alumnae, were recognized at a social action brunch on Saturday, March 24, in the James C. Wilson University Union on campus.

Jenkins has served as WVSU’s 11th president since July 2016. Prior to leading the State family, Jenkins served as Vice President for Student Affairs and Enrollment Management at the University of Maryland Eastern Shore and, most recently, as the Senior Associate Vice President for the University of Central Florida – the nation’s second largest university.

A 1937 graduate of WVSU, Johnson’s remarkable story as a “human computer” as NASA was told in the best-selling book and hit film “Hidden Figures.” During her 33-year career at NASA, Johnson calculated the trajectory for Alan Shepard, the first American in space. Even after NASA began using electronic computers, John Glenn requested that she personally recheck the calculations made by the new electronic computers before his flight aboard Friendship 7 – the mission on which he became the first American to orbit the Earth. She went on to do the calculations for the first actual moon landing in 1969.

WVSU Director of Alumni Relations Belinda Fuller accepted the award on Johnson’s behalf.

Also honored Saturday as “Champions of Change” were WVSU alumnae Reginia Lipscomb and Margaret “Rosebud” Cunningham.

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West Virginia State University is a public, land grant, historically black university, which has evolved into a fully accessible, racially integrated, and multigenerational institution, located in Institute, W.Va. As a “living laboratory of human relations,” the university is a community of students, staff, and faculty committed to academic growth, service and preservation of the racial and cultural diversity of the institution. Its mission is to meet the higher education and economic development needs of the state and region through innovative teaching and applied research.
 
 -WVSU-
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