U.S. Army Captain
Featured in Glamour Magazine as a Woman of the Year, Captain Whennah Andrews has been at the movement to end hair discrimination in the U.S. armed forces. Her quest for inclusion began in 2014, when an update to the army's grooming policy banned two-strand twists and locs. Concerned by the potential health issues caused by tight hair styles, Andrews reached out to a Coast Guard Officer who dealt with a similar issue, and was advised to create a compelling visual resource to present before the army's uniform board. In collaboration with natural hair educator GreenBeauty, Andrews helped to produce a video dispelling the misconceptions regarding the professionalism and cleanliness of natural hair. In response, the Army's uniform board decided to expand their regulations to allow locs and thicker braids.
I've always believed that being in the U.S. Army we represent a diverse nation, and I wanted our military to converge to that reality.
Fashion Designer, Class of 2020
Howard is a very culturally rich and diverse University and our students not only come from all over the country, but all over the world. However, even through that diversity, there is an undeniable culture that grounds us and connects us, showing us that while we may all be different, that is where our strength lies.
National Book Award-Winning Novelist, Essayist, & Journalist
Ta-Nehisi Coates is an award-winning novelist, essayist and journalist. Coates was born and raised among six siblings in Baltimore, Maryland. His mother was a teacher, while his father is the founder of Black Classic Press, a publishing company specializing in books by Black writers. Coates studied journalism at Howard University for five years, then went on to work as a reporter. His writing gained national attention in 2008 with the publication of his first piece for The Atlantic; in that same year, Coates published his first book, The Beautiful Struggle. In 2015, Coates’ second book, the memoir Between the World and Me, launched his work to best-seller status. Since then, Coates has published myriad articles, memoirs, and essays, as well as a bestselling novel. He is currently a writer in residence at NYU’s Arthur L. Carter Journalism Institute.
My only Mecca was, is, and shall always be Howard University.
Lavender Fund Founder
Christopher N. Cross, Ph.D. is a biomedical engineer with expertise in policy and non-profit development. During his graduate studies at Howard University, Cross became the first openly gay male student trustee in the University’s history. He also founded the Lavender Fund, a scholarship award established to provide academic financial support for Howard University students who demonstrate outstanding involvement in LGBT+ community issues. Cross has since worked in publishing, biomedical engineering, and public policy. Currently, he is a postdoctoral research fellow at Yale University’s Cancer Biology Training Program.
I am endowed by the Universe to be who I am. This foundational understanding gives me continued solace and guidance along my journey of growth and evolution.”
Data Science Researcher & Software Engineer, Class of 2020
Devin C. Martin is an electrical engineering and computer science student at Howard University. Martin played an instrumental role in developing a prototype for ConnexionAI, a first-of-its-kind accessibility application that can convert video input of American Sign Language to spoken languages. This innovative software won first place at HackDuke and third place at HackHarvard. Martin also helped to develop an award-winning prototype for Handoff, a ride-sharing and carpool application that helps connect people in need of transportation with volunteer drivers. Martin used his time during the coronavirus quarantine to develop a program to stop the spread of misinformation on COVID-19 on social media for MIT’s COVID-19 Datathon Challenge. He has interned in NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, the National Security Agency Data Science Research Internship, and the Google Computer Science Summer Institute.
Marshall Scholar, Class of 2020
Michaella Moore is a graduating senior majoring in biology with a double minor in sociology and theater arts. She is active in student governance and is the vice president of the Petey Greene Program, for which she has served as a tutor in prisons and jails. Moore was selected by the British government as one of 46 national recipients of the 2020 Marshall scholarship, making her the third Marshall Scholar in Howard University history. She is pursuing medicine with the goal of informing public health, policy and practices on a global stage to increase heath equity in underserved communities.
We all have a divine beat that fits into the rhythm of the world. The experiences I have had abroad completely shifted my entire view of life, health, culture, faith and humanity. Its part of my mission to not only continue this exploration of our world, but to inspire and aid other young black adults in doing the same.
DJ, Musician, Actor, Class of 2012
Jae Murphy is an international DJ, music producer, songwriter, and actor. He graduated from Howard University with a broadcast journalism degree in 2012. Murphy has toured in six continents and performed on countless stages, including performances on Good Morning America, Jimmy Kimmel Live, and the 2017 NFL Thanksgiving Halftime Show. Murphy has worked with a wide range of artists, including Eric Bellinger, The Game, French Montana, Wale, Problem and Jason Derulo, for whom he is the official DJ. Murphy has consistently contributed to the Howard community, and refers to his musical journey as “Howard to Hollywood: The Beautiful Struggle.” He hopes to release his debut album this year.
CEO, Unanimous Media
Jeron Smith is a Howard alumnus whose career in sports marketing and advertising has proven to be nothing short of remarkable. In 2015, Smith was featured on Forbes Magazine’s 30 Under 30 list for his work as a brand manager at Nike, which included the Jordan brand and the “Basketball Never Stops” campaign. He went on to serve as the deputy director of digital initiatives in the White House’s Office of Digital Strategy during the final year of the Obama administration.
Smith is the CMO of SC30 Inc. and CEO of Unanimous Media, which he co-founded with basketball superstar Stephen Curry to “inspire, impact, and empower” through multimedia storytelling centered around family, faith, and sports themes. In 2019, Unanimous Media’s series, “5 Minutes from Home with Stephen Curry,” won a Webby Award for Best Web Personality/Host. Additionally, Smith was featured on Ad Age’s 40 Under 40 list. Smith credits his peers at the Howard University School of Business for creating a foundational environment for his future success. He mentors young students and is passionate about inspiring them to pursue their ambitions, despite the obstacles.
My favorite phrase is “relentless ambition.” I believe that phrase perfectly captures what it takes to break into and thrive in this industry.
Programming & Partnerships Lead, Family On Three Foundation, Class of 2019
Simone Yhap is a Senior Pre-Med Biology Major, and a Political Science and Chemistry double minor from West Moreland, Jamaica by way of Brooklyn, New York. Since her senior year of high school, she has been active in the non-profit sector by volunteering with the Family on Three Foundation, a 501©3 non-profit organization focused on youth empowerment, enrichment and mentorship through basketball and motivational workshops.
Can’t does not exist in your vocabulary ... the only limitations are the ones you impose on yourself; if you go into something already believing that you cannot do it, then you will not do it.