N.C. A&T, Hofstetter to Host HBCU Lecture Series on Hacktivism and Black Creativity

By Jamie Crockett / 02/28/2023 Students

EAST GREENSBORO, N.C. (Feb. 28, 2023) – North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University will be the first of 10 historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs) to host George Hofstetter’s new lecture series on hacktivism and Black creativity. The goal of the lecture series is to discuss topics that “inspire students and faculty to build at the intersection of disruptive innovation and social justice.” The event will take place Thursday, March 2, at 6 p.m. in the Deese Ballroom of the A&T Student Center.

Hacktivism, as defined by Dorothy Denning, is "the marriage of hacking and activism. More precisely, it is the use of computer technology to achieve a political agenda through legally ambiguous means. Acts of hacktivism generally obstruct normal computer activity in some way, and does not cause injury or significant monetary loss.”

Hofstetter is the founder and CEO of George Hofstetter Technologies, Inc. (GHTech Inc.), a tech company he started as a 16-year-old to “help Black and Brown students gain entry into technology as innovators, not just consumers."

North Carolina A&T has a well-documented history of social justice, equity and activism. Not only this, but the university consistently prepares students for an ever-changing technological landscape through rigorous coursework, lab and research opportunities, career fairs that host leading employers, and through its commitment to enhancing access and student success by helping address the digital divide.

For example, the university launched the Aggie Mobile Program-Unlimited Possibilities, an $8 million investment in hardware and software in collaboration with Apple, “to spur creativity and innovation among faculty and first-year students, as well as to ensure that during the financial upheaval caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, students do not fall behind in computing technology due to their financial circumstance.”

Additionally, the university’s Verizon Innovative Learning Program has been regarded as a national model that has extended similar instruction and technological access to younger students in the local community since 2015 – providing STEM academies that introduce robotics, 3D design and printing, social entrepreneurship and other professional development opportunities to the next generation.

The HBCU lecture will feature Oluwaseyi Olaleye, founder of Organic Harvest Digital and mechanical engineering alumnus from Stanford University; Christopher Slowe, co-founder and CTO of Reddit; and Akintunde Ahmad, founder of Ade Dehye and Yale and Columbia University alumnus.

The event, presented through a partnership with Reddit and The University of Cambridge’s ThinkLab, will be livestreamed and recorded. Two students in attendance will win a MacBook Air or $500. Register for the program here.

Media Contact Information: jicrockett@ncat.edu

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