Sunday, February 17, 2019

FAMU hosting statewide Small Farm Program Series

Florida A&M University is hosting a 2019 Capacity Building Series with the theme, “Enabling a Thriving Sustainability.”

FAMU’s Statewide Small Farm Program is an active participatory sustainable development program that provides relevant education, technical assistance and hands-on training to small farmers, underserved farming populations, and their communities.

This two-day, three-part series will kick off today, on Sunday, February 17, at 2:30 p.m., with “Reclaiming the Roots of Organics” at the FAMU Viticulture and Small Fruit Research Center.

The final sessions will occur on Monday, February 18, from 10:30 a.m. – noon focusing on “The Future of Local Foods and Small Farms” at the College of Agriculture and Food Sciences and from 1:15 – 2:30 p.m., the “Agroecology: Science, Farming System and Social Movement” located in the School of the Environment.

Saturday, February 16, 2019

FAMU’s 2019 football schedule features 6 home games

The Rattlers will play six games at Bragg Memorial Stadium in Tallahassee, Fla. during the 2019 football season.

It all begins on Sept. 14, when Florida A&M takes on Fort Valley State in the Jake Gaither Classic. The action continues with homestands against Southern University (Sept. 21), North Carolina Central (Oct. 5), North Carolina A&T (Oct. 19), Delaware State (Nov. 2), and Howard (Nov. 16).

The Oct. 5 contest against NCCU will also serve as the Homecoming game.

Friday, February 15, 2019

Four Rattlers make Preseason All-MEAC Baseball Team

Four Florida A&M University Baseball team members received 2019 Preseason All-Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference honors announced by the league office on Thursday.

Garnering first-team notices were St. Petersburg, Fla. senior catcher Brett Maxwell (.270, 48 hits, 24 runs, 5 2Bs, HR, 30 RBIs), and Tallahassee junior relief pitcher Dylan Carson (1-0, 2.33, 9 Saves 27.0 IP, 24Ks).

Second team selections included a pair of Tallahassee area seniors, third baseman Kaycee Reese (.279, 46 hits, 29 runs, 8 2Bs, 4 HRs, 20 RBI), and center fielder Willis McDaniel (.253, 39 hits, 28 runs, 9 2Bs, 4 3Bs, 2 HRs, 21 RBI).

The Rattlers were picked to finish third in the MEAC Southern Division behind defending conference and division winner North Carolina A&T, and archrival Bethune-Cookman.

FAMU opens their 2019 schedule next Friday in the Andre Dawson Classic in New Orleans.

They will then open their 2019 home schedule on Tuesday, Feb. 19 against the University of Missouri Tigers at 4:00 p.m., which starts a six-game home stand at Moore-Kittles Field.

Thursday, February 14, 2019

FAMU Law students present legal projects at Florida NAACP winter quarterly meeting

Two Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University (FAMU) College of Law students made presentations at the winter quarterly National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) statewide meeting in Orlando on January 26, 2019.

FAMU Law student Cassandra Brown’s presentation was titled “School-to-Prison Pipeline, Truly a Respecter of Persons; Disproportionately Affects Minority Children”. Brown’s white paper takes a closer look at the growing issue of juveniles in the court system following behavioral problems in the school system.

“I am interested in this topic because some minority children are getting suspended, expelled and arrested for minor infractions that should be addressed in school, not in the juvenile criminal justice system,” said Brown. “I believe minority children are being disproportionately funneled into the school to prison pipeline without adequate consideration to the underlying socio-economic, mental health, social or dysfunctional family issues.”

Sarah Diekman, also a FAMU Law student, presented on “The State of Pre-K Education in the United States”. Her white paper addressed the access and quality of pre-k education nationally, examining racial and social economic disparities and developing best practices. Quality pre-K programs such as Head Start are shown to reduce the impact of socio-economic disadvantage on children.

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

4 FAMU mens athletic teams hit with NCAA APR violations

After showing tremendous signs of success on the court this year, rising to as high as No. 2 in the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) just last week, the FAMU men's basketball team (10-16, 7-4) has now been slapped with a ban on postseason play by the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) that will prohibit it from participating in next month's conference tournament. The ban is a result of not meeting the NCAA’s Academic Progress Rate (APR). 

Three other men's sports were also hit with postseason bands for 2019 due to low APR --- golf, men’s indoor and outdoor track. 

FAMU says the four programs did not meet the NCAA's multi-year threshold score of 930. The seasons that contributed scores to the self-imposed penalty are 2013-2014, 2014-2015, 2015-16 and 2016-2017. The penalties are considered a Level One infraction, meaning that along with postseason ban, the teams will also their practice times reduced to 16 hours per week from 20, with the lost 4 hours replaced with academic activities.  

The latest APR sanctions are the second time in the past four years for basketball and golf, and the third violation in a decade for the indoor and outdoor track programs.

Alexander seeking $1.7M for FAMU's Brooksville Research Station

State Rep. Ramon Alexander, D-Tallahassee, has filed a bill that seeks $1,719,136 for the Florida A&M University Brooksville Agricultural and Environmental Research Station.

The money is being sought, in part, to hire farm technicians, a grant writer, a research data manager, a researcher in plant science, and a researcher in animal science. The funds would also go to purchasing “tractors, tools, and equipment” a “feed lot trough covering,” and a small ruminant barn.

According to a funding request submitted by FAMU, “The services to the citizens will include consultations on technical matters on sustainable agriculture, food security, food safety, and business management; seminars, workshops, and training sessions for students, local farmers, and residents; field and site visits, and demonstrations of new technology..”

FAMU received the 3,800 acre Brooksville site from the U.S. Department of Agriculture following a transfer agreement that was signed in 2014. The university is considering building a solar farm on the site and also using some of the land for industrial hemp.

Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Norfolk State basketball team takes 66-54 victory over FAMU in Lawson Center

The Norfolk State men's basketball team took a 66-54 win over Florida A&M on Monday night at the Alfred “Al” Lawson Teaching Gymnasium and Multipurpose Center during a game televised on ESPNU.

NSU never trailed in the contest and led by as much as 20 late in the game. The Spartans improved to 9-1 in the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) as well as 14-11 overall.

Justin Ravenel had 18 points on 5-of-12 shooting to lead Florida A&M (10-16, 7-4 MEAC). Isaiah Martin added 10 points and nine boards, and Tracy Hector also had nine boards as the Rattlers held the edge on the glass.

NSU shot 6-of-14 from deep and held the Rattlers to 23 percent shooting from beyond the arc. FAMU also made just 15-of-28 from the free throw line.

Kim Godwin named executive VP of CBS News

FAMU alumna Kimberly Godwin, a former member of the University's faculty, has been named executive VP of CBS news, with top editorial oversight of news gathering around the world.  Godwin, a 1984 graduate of the School of Journalism & Graphic Communications, joined CBS in 2007 and was VP of news. She was also CBS News' executive director for development and diversity since 2014.

At FAMU, Godwin was Director of the Journalism Division in the School of Journalism & Graphic Communications. Before then, she was the VP and news director for KNBC in LA.

Monday, February 11, 2019

Nearly 2 years later, FAMU's medical marijuana public information campaign has yet to start

In 2017 when the State of Florida joined a growing number of states in approving the use of marijuana for medicinal proposes it did something that no other state had done by mandating that $10 from the sale of each identification card fee go to FAMU, the state’s only public HBCU. The money directed to FAMU from the fee is intended to be used to conduct a public information campaign to educate the state’s minority populations about the potential benefits of medical marijuana and the pitfalls of smoking or selling illegal pot.

Rouson favored FAMU over UF/USF

State Sen. Darryl Rouson, D-St Petersburg, who successfully included the amendment to steer the money to FAMU, told the Tallahassee Democrat that he pushed the amendment because the original version of the bill provided research funding to the University of Florida and University of South Florida, but not FAMU. 

“The flagship African-American university in the state, which also is known for research, should be given an appropriation for this purpose because the minority community has suffered greatly in areas of addiction, for unlawful use and economic disparities,” Rouson said at the time.


The issue of substance abuse is very personal to Rouson who just last year celebrated his 20th year of sobriety, after having past battles with addictions. In addition, Rouson’s wife, Angela, served on the FAMU Board of Trustees for a brief period.