HAMPTON, Va. (Dec. 3, 2018) – Students from both the Hampton University Departments of Computer Science and School of Business took part in a technology competition for AT&T on November 2, 2018, and won first place.
“Congratulations to these outstanding students for their collaboration and academic excellence in winning this competition,” said Hampton University President, Dr. William R. Harvey. “Our students continue to excel because only the best and the brightest attend our prestigious university.”
There were six teams total in the showcase and competition, which took place in Washington D.C. in early November. Hampton University had two teams that participated. The Hampton University teams competed against Howard University and University of Maryland.
The winning Hampton University team, which they named “Sanctuary of Defense” and used S.O.D. as their acronym during the presentation, included Taylor Owens, marketing major; Nia Dix, marketing major; Tauren Bass, computer science major; and Coleman Scott, computer science major. Each team was asked to identify an issue in their community, “and we had to leverage AT&T technology to solve that issue. The different questions they asked were, what was the issue? What were the different technologies we used? How to be a competitive advantage to AT&T and what were the pros and cons of the resolution we came up with,” said Owens. S.O.D. chose to focus on Hampton University as their community.
Each student had very specific roles in the competition. “We were there to help pursue an idea that was technically feasible,” said Bass. “The marketing students would throw ideas out and we would build upon those ideas on what kind of technologies that we could use, and how we could integrate AT&T’s technology. We were there to lead the process when it came to technology.”
“Taylor and I helped bring that business aspect to the competition and see how we can incorporate that and understand our consumer and the community around us. We helped show how we can involve the technology on our campus,” said Dix.
Once the idea and resolution were completed, the teams had to present to judges.
Dr. Jean Muhammad, Chair of the Hampton University Department of Computer Science, and Dr. Shontae Taylor, Assistant Professor for the Hampton University School of Business, accompanied the students on the trip.
“The students came up with their own solutions, so each team solution was unique. There were three schools there: Hampton University, Howard University, and University of Maryland and each school had two teams. We didn’t know how it was going to be set up until we got there. Each of our teams had computer science students from the Department of Computer Science, and business and marketing students from the School of Business so the computer science students provided the technical solution and the business students were going to market this idea to the judges. The students came up with the idea, the technology, the business showcase, everything, the faculty were just observers,” said Dr. Muhammad. “The computer science students learned from the business students how to market their product and the business students learned the impact of technology on their product ideas.”
“I am so excited that our business students had an opportunity to partner with the computer science students at the 2018 AT&T case competition and forum. In addition to competing in the competition, our students were able to meet and engage with several executives in leadership roles at AT&T. The students were provided valuable information on the importance of how AT&T incorporates STEM in their business model,” said Dr. Taylor. “Overall, the applicability of how business can reinforce the components of STEM provided wonderful context for our students. This was an awesome experience!”
The winning team walked away with free headphones – Beats by Dre.