By Alicia Cook
Bloomfield College Trio SSS STAR alumnus, Gregory Cowart ’18, was admitted to Virginia State University’s computer science master degree program. Cowart, who graduated from the College with a bachelor’s in computer science, earned the HBCU Masters of Computer Science Grant, which includes full-tuition and a monthly stipend.
Virginia State University is a historically black public land-grant university in Ettrick, Virginia. Founded on March 6, 1882, Virginia State developed as the United States’ first fully state-supported four-year institution of higher learning for African Americans.
Cowart, an East Orange, New Jersey native, was made aware of the grant through Dr. Suhaib Obeidat, coordinator of the Network Engineering program at Bloomfield College. Dr. Obeidat believed Cowart matched the academic criteria and possessed the motivation to apply and be admitted to Virginia State. Cowart met the criteria, enrolled, and will graduate from the rigorous 12-month program in 2019.
“Everything I learned at Bloomfield College has perfectly prepared me for this intensive program. I am really happy I did my undergraduate work at Bloomfield College because there’s nothing I can’t do now,” said Cowart, who is preparing to present his research at an international conference in Florida. “The work can be intense, but I am perfectly equipped for it.”
Upon earning his master’s degree, Cowart plans to move back to New Jersey with hopes of working in the design aspects of the field. He is contemplating returning to academia in the future to earn a PhD.
“My time at Bloomfield College wasn’t easy. I couldn’t afford to attend without loans. I refused to limit my own future based on my current situation,” said Cowart. “When you really work on yourself, other people will take notice. My professor was under no obligation to send me that grant opportunity. He let me know about it because he knew I could handle it, that I was a hard worker. People want you to succeed and Bloomfield College has a lot of those people.”
When thinking of advice to give to current Bloomfield College students, Coward expressed, “Your education doesn’t stop once you leave the classroom. It never stops – the entire time you are here you are supplementing your education by networking and being the best version of yourself. College teaches you to learn on your own and makes you better prepared for the real world. Don’t let these four years go to waste.”