Norfolk State wields $25,000 grant for emerging technology is your source for free local news and information in Virginia Beach

(Courtesy Norfolk State University)
(Courtesy Norfolk State University)

Norfolk State University has used a $25,000 grant to boost training and education in emerging technologies.

The grant came from the Dominion Foundation, the charitable arm of Dominion Power, according to a release issued Tuesday. The funds, which became available to NSU last fall, have helped enlarge training and instruction in areas such as microelectronics. Coursework in these areas teaches students to design devices for lighting and energy generation, including green energy devices such as LEDs and solar cells, the release said. A solar cell converts sunlight into electricity.

“”It was a really good boost to what we were trying to do,” Dr. Demetris L. Geddis, an associate professor of engineering and the director of the Micro- and Nano-technology Center, said in an interview. “It helped us get the ball rolling into power generation and green technology.”

The Micro- and Nano-technology Center is a 6,000-square foot “clean room facility” for producing microelectronics and optoelectronics devices, according to NSU’s website. Equipment within the facility “enables the deposition and etching of thin films, the patterning of devices and microstructures, and wet chemical processing.” The cleanroom allows NSU researchers to partner with private industry, government laboratories and other university labs and serves as “a key stakeholder in the education and training of diverse populations for careers in engineering and technology,” the website says.

Norfolk State had an enrollment of 5,107 students last fall, according to a fact sheet posted on the school’s web site. The College of Science, Engineering and Technology had 1,581 enrolled students, making it the second most popular, after the College of Liberal Arts, which had 1,797 students.

A spokesperson for the Dominion Foundation did not respond to a request for comment before deadline.

More information about NSU is available here, on its website.

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Joan Quigley is a former Miami Herald business reporter, a graduate of Columbia Journalism School and an attorney. Her writing has appeared in the Washington Post,, and Talking Points Memo. Her recent book, Just Another Southern Town: Mary Church Terrell and the Struggle for Racial Justice in the Nation’s Capital, was shortlisted for the 2017 Mark Lynton History Prize. Her first book, The Day the Earth Caved In: An American Mining Tragedy, won the 2005 J. Anthony Lukas Work-in-Progress Award.