In the late 1960's, a devastating 80 percent of the black freshmen entering the engineering program at Purdue University dropped out. In 1971, the dean of the college agreed to the idea of starting the Black Society of Engineers (BSE) began by two Purdue undergraduate students, Edward Barnette and Fred Cooper. The only black faculty member on staff, Arthur J. Bond, was assigned as advisor. They wanted to establish a student organization to help improve the recruitment and retention of Black engineering students.
NSBE (originally known as the Society of Black Engineers (SBE)) was founded at Purdue University in 1975 by six people: John Logan, Jr., Edward Coleman, George Smith, Stanley Kirtley, Brian Harris, and Anthony Harris. Their nickname is ‘The Chicago Six.’ These men expanded upon BSE with guidance and encouragement from Bond to become the founders of the student organization we love today.
In 1975, the first National Conference was held at Purdue University. 48 students from 32 schools attended the conference. Five important things happened at this conference:
The NSBE torch of our national symbol/logo symbolizes our everlasting burning desire to achieve success as engineers in our present society. The lightning bolts represent the striking impact that will be felt upon society and industry as a result of the contributions and achievements made by the National Society of Black Engineers.
NSBE offers academic excellence programs, scholarships, leadership training, professional development and access to career opportunities for thousands of members annually. With over 2000 elected leadership positions, 12 regional conferences and an annual convention, NSBE provides opportunities for success that remain unmatched by any other organization. NSBE also publishes three national magazines; the NSBE Magazine, the Career Engineer and the NSBE Bridge.
Who We Are
The National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE) is a 501(C)(3) non-profit association that is owned and managed by its members. The organization is dedicated to the academic and professional success of African-American engineering students and professionals. NSBE offers its members leadership training, professional development, mentoring opportunities, career placement services and more! NSBE is comprised of 242 collegiate, 70 professional and 82 pre-college chapters nationwide and overseas. The organization has over 31,000 members nationally, making it the nation's largest student-governed organization which embodies hundreds of pre- college, college and alumni/technical professional chapters all over the world. These chapters are geographically divided into six regions.
NSBE is governed by an executive board of college students and engineering professionals and is operated by a professional staff in our World Headquarters located in Alexandria, VA.
NSBE, with its unique characteristics, has accomplished more for Black engineering students than any other organization in the world. The same light that NSBE spreads to students and professionals in the United States is also relevant in African, European, South American, Asian, Caribbean, Canadian, Australian and Pacific Islander countries for people of color. It is the NSBE leadership's vision that the organization will replicate itself in countries around the world, creating a world network of Black engineers, scientists and technologists through its international operations.
The link to the NSBE homepage is http://nsbe.org.