Midwest Region

BDPA Midwest Region consists of the following local BDPA chapters:

  1. Central Illinois
  2. Chicago
  3. Cincinnati
  4. Cleveland
  5. Columbus
  6. Dayton
  7. Detroit
  8. Indianapolis
  9. Southern Minnesota
  10. St. Louis
  11. Twin Cities

This topic will allow for discussions on any aspect of the BDPA Midwest Region!

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Michael Wulf
BDPA Chapter Presidents, Officers, Members, & Volunteers!

My name is Michael Wulf and I’m a candidate running for BDPA Midwest Region Vice President.

With only a few weeks before we travel to the 35th Annual BDPA Technical Conference & Career Expo I wanted to introduce myself to each chapter in the Midwest Region and ask consideration for your support in my decision to run for office.

In the past 8 years I’ve been a volunteer heavily engaged in the BDPA Student Information Technology Education & Scholarship (SITES) program ... more specifically, the High School Computer Competition (HSCC) program in the Twin Cities. Most of you know me as their HSCC Coordinator. As a leader in corporate America, I use a collaborative style of management. In this role I view myself in the same capacity - in a supportive role to assist in making BDPA even more successful building on the great work of predecessors.

In this role I will partner with the elected National President, Regional Director, and many others to empower our Midwest region to be the best in BDPA!

Given the opportunity to be elected by your chapter delegates at the national conference my goals are:
  • Expand communication between chapters, national and BETF.
  • Grow membership and reactive inactive chapters in the region.
  • Support local chapter and national initiatives.
  • Support membership growth.
  • Support youth education, professional development, and HSCC competition.
Given the opportunity to serve in this capacity my intention is together establish a Midwest action plan to align and accomplish our combined prioritized goals. I have the experience, passion and determination to deliver on what is needed. Together we can make a difference at a higher level than ever dreamed.

Things you may not have known about me that you may want to know why serving in this capacity is important.
  • Father of a blended family with two daughters, two sons, and three grandchildren. Education and the mission of BDPA means a great deal to me.
  • Extremely knowledgeable in the management of geographically dispersed matrix organizations – much like our Midwest region is organized. Veteran IT Professional serving IT for 32 years.
  • I live in the “Midwest” keeping homes in both Minnesota and Illinois.
Sending this memo in advance of the national election to allow us both the opportunity to talk by phone. I will attempt to call you, however I can be reached at (651) 261-0408. See you at the “Get to know the candidate session” (8/14/2013).

Michael G. Wulf, Candidate
BDPA Midwest Region Vice President
Michael Wulf
Last time I was in Reno, NV I bowled a 3-game series of #600 ("my best ever") ... this time its about what drives me: "Culture for Service, Service to Humanity" - now serving on the National BDPA board of directors.

This weekend marks my first ever meeting as a national officer representing the BDPA Midwest Region as Vice-President. I've had my reality checks and now I adjust and learn from my peers. I am truly honored to have been asked and selected to represent the fine work done by so many dedicated volunteers at BDPA. They work tirelessly to create networking and training opportunities for emerging and existing IT professionals.

In addition, a tradition of giving back by "raising up" youth in the community by offering incredible (free) application development training and more to middle & high school students that have an interest in making a career and bettering their odds at getting a six-figure income. Many kids trained by BDPA come out of high school ready to take on corporate application development roles in traditional and mobile platforms.

I thank God every day for allowing me enough strength to work, go to school, ride and volunteer. Everything I do must have a purpose, somehow, ... for some reason I am placed on this earth for a reason. Taking the Blessings others have given to me along my life and career and hopefully doing "good" for someone.

Michael Wulf, VP-elect
BDPA Midwest Region

BDPA Midwest Region Leadership Conference held on March 21-22, 2014 in Columbus OH.  I attended as representative from BDPA Cincinnati chapter.    Here are my crib notes from the meeting:

7 of 11 Midwest chapters attended (Chicago, Cincinnati, Columbus, Detroit, Indianapolis, Milwaukee, St. Louis).

  • National BDPA president Dr. Craig Brown was outstanding in his energy and information. He began with a powerful statement that BDPA leaders need to focus: visibility (‘share our stories'), viability (‘our relevance'), marketability (‘ROI-value proposition'). He wants to see BDPA membership numbers experience a quantum leap. He shared that local chapters can grow if we:

o Collaborate - find any STEM program in the city and collaborate with them
o Network
o Socialize - hang out together *and* social media
o Fundraise

  • CIO Julius Clark gave his presentation. He focused on need for mobile technology access to BDPA at local and national level; need to videotape our monthly program meetings so that they can be archived for future viewing; need for each chapter to keep their BDPA.org ‘landing page' current; need for BDPA leaders to leverage the bdpa.org email address (vs. your personal or company email address) when doing BDPA business
  • VPSP Karen Smith gave an excellent overview of the 2014-2015 strategic direction for the organization (the documented plan should be available to us from the document repository).
  • Past national president Monique Berry gave a succinct and powerful tutorial on preparing and submitting the COTY Report. One of the keys is to create a process where the information is gathered throughout the year ... DO NOT wait until the end of the period to try to do it all. She also suggested that we focus on ‘low-hanging fruit' and ‘high-score items' in the COTY report.
  • National BDPA president Craig Brown ended the day by giving several specific ideas for growing membership:

o Go to the local school district website and learn how to disseminate BDPA information (SITES program and such) directly to high school students
o Go to college websites and learn how to disseminate BDPA information (internships and such) directly to college students on that campus
o Global Search: Identify all existing STEM programs in the area
o Meetup.com - use it for BDPA events
o Visit local chapter meetings for NSBE, NABA and other Black professional organizations in the area
o Do you get mass email distribution of local events (First Fridays, After-Work Networking, etc)? If so, reach out to the folks that send those messages to ask how much they would charge to send out a message about upcoming BDPA event?
o ‘Build on Vision' ... then ‘Develop Program'. In other words talk the talk with potential members and sponsors and then be prepared to deliver on the talk if and when the funding comes through.
o Press Releases - take full advantage of local media to tell the story of BDPA board appointments, BDPA events, member accomplishments and such
o Find *big names* in technology - invite them to participate in some manner with local chapter
o Get *social-media minded* - Twitter, LinkedIn, Groupsite, Facebook and such - use tools and aggregators (‘feedburners')
o Every city has major annual events (marathons, Black Family Gathering, Reds Opening Day Parade, etc). Get BDPA engaged with a booth. With signs {"STEM" "Technology" "Diversity"}

Those are my crib-notes. The weekend was a powerful opportunity to meet and greet the other chapter presidents in the region.

Michael & Elizabeth Wulf
Greetings Midwest Presidents!

Many of you know my wife, Elizabeth, and I raised money by doing www.Ride4Charity.org. We created a unique way to raise awareness and enough money towards establishing a BDPA learning management platform that is dedicated to broadening the reach of BDPA tech education out to the kids in the community. Initially to impact our youth ... then adults, veterans and so forth. This promise to you was also part of my campaign speech as Regional VP so our collaborative need to make delivery of BDPA services in education easier for you as a chapter leader.

We (a lot of people) have been very successful in establishing a Moodle LMS hosting environment. Now we are implementing a 10 week (20 module) set of courses.  For example, HTML, CSS and JavaScript modules make up one course.

We have branded this effort "BDPA Academy". The new website name is http://BDPA.Academy

BDPA Academy is NOT THE HIGH SCHOOL COMPUTER COMPETITION (HSCC) in any way, shape or form. It is a set of courses that can be used as a feeder to HSCC over time by harvesting excited students interested in deepening their options, education, and career in programming. It is a great way to engage new learners and give them options in IT.

It is also intended to help chapters establish a consistent & sustainable SITES program without losing intellectual training property every time a volunteer turns over. It is also a way to provide membership value and add to the many BDPA opportunities to donate and join.

Here is our roll-out schedule:
  • Spring 2015: we introduce Level 1-HTML/CSS/JavaScript.
  • Fall 2015:  we build out a Level 2-JavaScript, algorithm, database - type course and release it for Spring 2016. Yet another HSCC prep course for you to leverage.
  • Spring 2016: we offer a Level 3 set of language and application integration courses that you could use to identify your future participants for either the comprehensive SITES program or the more specific HSCC program.  Level 3 focus would be on C#, PhP and Java.
  • Fall 2016: we will seek certification either from the IT industry or self-certification. The curriculum will leverage resources that provide certificates (such as W3Schools).  Chapters or students may initially select to subsidize these certificates but we hope current efforts by some chapters will help refine and deliver this collaboratively in time.
The beauty of BDPA Academy is we'll also expand offerings beyond just programming to facilitate other areas of IT ...  such as cyber security, infrastructure, hardware, OS, mobile tech, Google, office productivity and more.

This is your personal invitation to join the February 2015 launch.

What we need to deploy the BDPA Academy in your chapter is as simple as 1-2-3:
  1. A physical location with 5-10 computers
  2. A truly dependable and dedicated teacher with HTML/CSS experience *and* an assistant.
  3. A willingness to "facilitate learning" of the curriculum and provide feedback along the way to BDPA Academy so we can refine and create a rock solid platform for national release in 2016.
If your SITES program is already solid then please keep up the awesome work! If you think there is value for your SITES program, this could be part of a two-year strategy to build a great program and feed HSCC team.

If your SITES program is solid ... but you struggle with a pipeline of students each year or have a willing volunteer teacher but no course structure then consider taking this out to a community center like a Boys & Girls club and use it to impact even more youth. This will deepen their membership passion and value as BDPA.

We hope to enroll 100 new students in the 2015 BDPA Academy.   We want to double that number to 1,000 in the 2016 BDPA Academy.

This invite is sent to Midwest presidents for the launch year. As your regional officers, it is extremely important Eric and I provide you with options and opportunities to grow and strengthen your chapter. Many of you as well as other leaders in BDPA have shared this vision. Eric and I are proud to be in our roles to see this through as your regional team.

Please contact me directly (michael.wulf@bdpa.org) if you have questions or wish to discuss further.  I'm very interested to know if you think this is of interest within your chapter!

Michael Wulf , vice president
BDPA Midwest Region
Twitter: @MichaelGWulf

What an extraordinary, but simple goal. You have my support. All of our personal contributions will need to be defined (metrics) AND delivered (track results)in an appropriate manner.

Thanks for this visionary food for thought.

Carl M.
Chapter Organization

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