The science and engineering program will host a cooperative event of black women scientists

The Chicago Pre-College Science and Engineering Program (ChiS&E) will host a special ZOOM meeting featuring the founders of the Black Scientist Cooperative (“BSC”). BSC’s mission is to empower the Black community to make informed, science-based decisions about health and wellness. Members of the all-black female scientific panel are the founders, Drs. Myla Patterson-Smith, Shuntae Williams, Charletha Irvin Joseph and Elethia Tillman. HBCU graduates were raised and educated by the black community and worked to leverage their expertise to make science and health information clear and simple for their listeners. This will be the second time the group has addressed ChiS&E students. During the event, BSC will share information about internships, scholarships, and grants available for students starting in high school and continuing through college. The virtual event will take place on Saturday, March 12 from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. The program is free for participants, with the only requirement being that a parent must participate with their child.

Interested students and parents can register for this event by emailing [email protected] “We decided to join this event because we know representation is important. We want minority students to understand that there is a place for them in science and engineering and that their voice really matters. Most of us had never met a black scientist or engineer before college. It’s time to change that,” says Dr. Patterson-Smith.

Dr. Patterson-Smith holds a Ph.D. in biomedical sciences (cardiovascular physiology and cell signaling) and an MBA in strategy; Dr. Williams holds a Ph.D. in biomedical sciences (microbiology and infectious diseases) and holder of a master’s degree in regulatory sciences; Dr. Irvin Joseph holds a Ph.D. in biomedical sciences (microbiology and genetics) and holds a master’s degree in health care administration; and Dr. Tillman holds a Ph.D. in Biomedical Sciences (Cardiovascular Physiology and Cell Signaling) with a certification in Medical Writing.

The Black Scientist Cooperative also created the Black Scientist Cooperative (“BSC”) podcast. Their podcast covers a wide range of topics, including the science behind COVID-19 vaccines, the origins of health disparities, and more.

“We are thrilled that the BSC has chosen to join us again this time during Women’s History Month,” said Kenneth Hill, CEO of ChiS&E. “Exposing our students to these women leaders in science and technology impacts all of our students, because gender should never be a barrier to success in science and technology.”

About the Black Scientists Cooperative (BSC)

BSC’s mission is to empower the Black community to make informed, science-based decisions about health and wellness. Their BSC podcast regularly features subject matter experts from around the world to help educate and empower the black community. Their motto is “make data simple”! Listen to the Black Scientist Cooperative podcast through their social media pages on Facebook, YouTube and Instagram.

About ChiS&E

The mission of the nonprofit Chicago Pre-College Science and Engineering Program (ChiS&E) is to increase the number of historically underrepresented African American and Latino students who are academically motivated and prepared to pursue careers in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). ChiS&E offers highly engaging, age-appropriate hands-on science, math, computer science, and engineering activities, and promotes careers in science and engineering. The program is a partnership between Chicago Public Schools (CPS) and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Colleges of Education and Engineering. Other partners include the LBJ STEM and Research Center at Texas State University, the Riverbend Mathematics Center (South Bend Indiana), and the University of Chicago School of Molecular Engineering. More information about this program can be found at

Chante’ Gamby is a writer passionate about social justice and empowering others to live their healthiest lives. You can follow her on Facebook at Fringefam, [email protected], or on her website,

Virginia S. Braud