EWC Students Excelling in Technology & Entrepreneurship

By William Jackson – For African Americans, entrepreneurship has always been important as many Blacks struggled to find jobs after slavery and during the segregation era.  Madame CJ Walker, is known as the first Black millionaire. She once said, “I had to make my own living and my own opportunity. But I made it! Don’t sit down and wait for the opportunities to come. Get up and make them.”

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President Dr. A. Zachary Faison Jr. and First Lady Donate $25,000 to EWC

JACKSONVILLE, FL. (August 9, 2018) – During the annual Edward Waters College (EWC) Fall Faculty & Staff  Institute President and First Lady Dr. A. Zachary Faison Jr. made a donation of $25,000 to the College to support their newly established EWC Professional and Scholarly Development Fund. (PSDF).

The EWC Professional and Scholarly Development Fund was established by Dr. and First Lady (Tyciee) Faison to support and expand opportunities for professional and scholarly development amongst faculty and staff of Edward Waters College. In establishing the fund, the first family supported the aforementioned initiative by making a $25,000 gift to the College to be disbursed over the next 5 years with the Fund becoming accessible beginning September 1, 2018 and every subsequent September 1st until 2022.

President A. Zachary Faison, Jr. and First Lady Tyciee present a check for $25,000 in support of and to establish the Professional and Scholarly Development Fund.

“We are truly excited to make this initial investment towards the professional and scholarly development of the outstanding and dedicated faculty and staff at EWC,” said EWC President, Dr. A. Zachary Faison Jr.

All full-time EWC faculty and staff employees, upon completion of one-year of employment service to the College, are eligible to apply to receive disbursements from the fund once per fiscal year for a professional and/or scholarly development activity.  Activities may include reputable seminar/ training programs, e-learning opportunities, presentations and participation at external regional/national conferences. Specified professional or scholarly development activities must be directly related to the faculty academic discipline and/or job responsibilities at Edward Waters College.

“Our intention is for this gift to catalyze increased philanthropic support to our entire college community as we fervently believe that EWC is fertile ground in which others should plant seeds that will assuredly reap a bountiful harvest as evidenced by our outstanding graduates who contribute greatly to the City of Jacksonville, the State of Florida, and beyond,” Faison said. 


JACKSONVILLE, FL. (August 3, 2018) – Having earned a distinctive reputation as a scholar-educator, a distinguished academician, and an accomplished higher education administrator, Dr. Monique L. Akassi has accepted an appointment as Associate Provost for Faculty Affairs at Edward Waters College (EWC).

Dr. Akassi will begin her tenure, effective August 6, 2018, and will provide leadership in support of the Office of the Provost and particularly its ongoing and continuous collaborative engagement with the college’s faculty. She will serve as a champion for the training and advancement of faculty throughout the college and will support the Provost in the achievement of the goals of the Division of Academic Affairs.

Monique L. Akassi, Ph.D.

“Dr. Akassi brings a wealth of contemporaneously relevant academic experience that will support Edward Waters College’s ascension into the next realm of scholarly achievement, particularly amongst the College’s faculty. In this transformative season in higher education, Dr. Akassi is poised to leverage the College’s academic strengths toward achieving even greater academic preeminence,” EWC Provost & Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs, Donna H. Oliver, stated.

Dr. Akassi will be expected to broadly influence the direction of faculty and Academic Affairs by leading and coordinating college-wide practices and policies associated with faculty work and Academic Affairs in general. Prior to joining the College, Dr. Akassi served in various faculty leadership roles, most recently as an Associate Professor of English and Chair of the Department of Languages and Literature at Virginia Union University, where she also served as a faculty senate officer. Prior to Virginia Union, Dr. Akassi served as an Assistant Professor of English and Director of the University Writing Center at Morgan State University after having served as a member of the faculty at Bowie State University where she founded the Africana Critical Composition & Rhetoric Association (ACCRA) and the Undergraduate Research & Writing Across the Curriculum Conference.  She has received various administrative and academic appointments throughout her higher education career and is a widely-published literary scholar, bringing critical research along with her varied publication experiences as the author/editor of seven books and two academic journals, including her latest publication with Cambridge, W.E.B. Du Bois and The Africana Rhetoric of Dealienation with a foreword written by Mr. Arthur McFarlane II, great grandson of W.E.B. Du Bois.

“I am eager and inspired to work in support of the continued scholarly achievements of the accomplished faculty and higher education professionals at EWC,” said Akassi “It is truly exciting to join the EWC community at such an evolutionary time, and I am convinced that EWC is poised to reach unprecedented academic prominence led by Provost Oliver and under the dynamic and visionary leadership of President Faison.

Akassi earned a Ph.D. from Morgan State University, an M.A. from Wright State University, and a B.A. from the University of Cincinnati.  In addition, she has completed and holds post-doctorate certifications in Management & Development and Educational Leadership from Harvard University’s Graduate School of Education and a post-doctorate certificate in Executive Leadership at Hampton University.

Akassi is married to Dr. Clément A. Akassi who is an Associate Professor of Spanish & French, and Director of Graduate Studies in the Department of World Languages and Cultures at Howard University. They have one son, Amaré, who enjoys mathematics, reading, writing and basketball. 


JACKSONVILLE, FL. (July 31, 2018) – After an illustrious 30 plus year career in higher education as a tenured faculty member, academic department chair, vice president, provost, and university president, Dr. Donna H. Oliver has accepted an appointment to become Edward Waters College’s (EWC) new Provost & Senior Vice President of Academic Affairs.

Effective August 6th, Oliver will serve dually as the College’s chief operating and chief academic officer providing intellectual leadership to create, advance, and implement the academic mission of the College and oversee its academic programs, a wide range of faculty matters, and student academic affairs.  Under the leadership of the President, and as a senior member of his executive cabinet, Oliver will provide innovative stratagems and vision to the College community towards building a strategic academic direction under a new resource model, balancing the excellence of individual academic departments with a strong commitment to interdisciplinary endeavors and collaboration.

“At a time of national debate about the role of higher education and particularly liberal arts colleges in our society, EWC was seeking an intellectual and scholarly leader who is bold, dynamic, entrepreneurial, and collaborative,” EWC President A. Zachary Faison Jr., said. “I am more than confident that we’ve found just that in Dr. Oliver and I look forward with great anticipation and enthusiasm to working with her to advance the competitiveness of our overall academic and institutional profile.”   

Oliver will join the institution at a transformative time as she is President Faison’s first executive cabinet appointee and will be expected to work closely with members of the College’s board of trustees, college administrators, faculty, staff, students, alumni, and a myriad of external stakeholders and constituencies. More specifically, Oliver is charged with fostering the creation, advancement, and implementation of the academic vision for the College and will maintain responsibility for all of EWC’s academic departments and degree programs while leading and implementing strategic planning and all reaffir­mation of institutional accreditation efforts. As Provost & Senior Vice President she is ideally positioned to leverage the institution’s excellence in academics and service to achieve even higher levels of institutional eminence.

 “I am eager and excited to join in partnership with the outstanding community of faculty scholars and dedicated higher ed­ucation professionals at Edward Waters College,” Oliver said. “I am also deeply inspired by President Faison’s tremendous vision and am honored to be chosen to support his progressive leadership as he leads EWC to unprecedented new heights of emerging eminence.”   

Prior to joining the College, Oliver made history as the first African-American woman to ever lead a public university in the state of Mississippi when she was appointed President of Mississippi Valley State University in 2009. As a seasoned se­nior administrator she also formerly served as Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs at Edward Waters College; Vice President for Academic Affairs at Bennett College; and professor of education/director of Leaders for the 21st Century at Elon University. She is the 1986 North Carolina Teacher of the Year, the 1987 National Teacher of the Year (having been selected from among America’s 2.5 million K-12 teachers), and was presented the Crystal Apple Award by President Ron­ald Reagan during an Oval Office Ceremony in the White House, after serving 12 years as a public high school biology and chemistry teacher. Oliver is a life time member of Girl Scouts of America, the Burlington Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., and the Mt. Zion Full Gospel Baptist Church.

Oliver earned a Ph.D. in Curriculum and Teaching from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, an M.S. in Edu­cational Administration from North Carolina A&T State University, an M.Ed. in Biology and Curriculum and Instruction from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, and an A.B. in Biology from Elon College. She holds three Execu­tive Leadership Certificates: a New Presidents Academy Certificate from the American Association of State Colleges and Universities (AASCU); an Institute for Educational Management (IEM) Certificate from the Harvard University Graduate School of Education; and a Management Certificate from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro Bryan Business School.

She is married to James C. Oliver, a retired buyer from General Dynamics.  They have one daughter, Minister Rachel Oliver-Cobbin, the 1986 Miss Black America and a former lead female vocalist for the internationally renowned recording artist, Atlantic Starr.  Rachel is married to Keith J. Cobbin, who is the Owner/Principal Consultant at Cobbin Consulting Group at Health Information Technology Company and they reside in Las Vegas, NV with their two children.  Dr. Oliver and her husband are the proud grandparents of those two children, 13-year old Cameron James Oliver Cobbin and 10-year old Raina Lael Oliver Cobbin

New Town Success Zone Back-To-School Event

New Town Success Zone Hosts its 10th Annual Back to School Giveaway

JACKSONVILLE, FLNew Town Success Zone in partnership with Edward Waters College (EWC) will host its 10th Annual Back to School Giveaway Event on Saturday, August 4th, 2018 at 9:00 am. There will be  over 75 vendors present addressing employment services, education, medical and behavioral health services, child development services, as well as housing.  Families will be able to receive FREE school physicals and immunizations from St. Vincent’s medical providers, book bags stuffed with back-to-school supplies and groceries to the first 300 families. JEA will be there for any questions about utilities or services.

City of Jacksonville, along with the Jacksonville Sherriff’s Office, will also be in attendance to share useful information that impact our communities. New Town Success Zone focuses on the two generational models to foster a positive impact on individuals, children, and families.  The 10th Annual Back to School event will not only positively impact the children of our community, but will benefit the entire family, also. This event will be held at the Adams-Jenkins Sports & Music Complex located at 1859 Kings Road, Jacksonville, FL. 32209.


George E. Maxey  

Executive Director

New Town Success Zone

Center for the prevention of Health Disparities

Edward Waters College

1401 Grunthal Street

Jacksonville, FL. 32209

Office: 904-470-8899

Email: george.maxey@ewc.edu

Edward Waters To Announce New Head Men’s Basketball Coach

Edward Waters To Announce New Head Men’s Basketball Coach

The Edward Waters College Department of Intercollegiate Athletics will hold a press conference on Tuesday, July 17, 2018 where Frederick Summers will officially be announced as the new Head Men’s Basketball Coach. The Press Conference will begin promptly at 11:00 am at the John Hurst Adams-Jimmy R. Jenkins Community Sports & Music Center.
Summers comes to Edward Waters after serving one season in the same role at Talladega College, where he led the Tornadoes to a 21-11 overall record and 10-5 in Gulf Coast Athletic Conference play. For his efforts, Summers was named the 2017-18 GCAC Men’s Basketball Coach of the Year.

Prior to his time at Talladega, Summers coached five seasons as the Head Coach at Concordia College in Selma, Alabama. He led the Hornets to four straight appearances to the United States Collegiate Athletic Association (USCAA) National Tournament. The Hornets finished as the tournament runner-up in 2015-16, while the following year, Concordia won its first USCAA National Championship. Summers finished his time at Concordia as the winningest coach in CCAL history with a record of 82-47.

Summers is a graduate of the University of Arkansas at Little Rock, where he was a guard on the Men’s Basketball team, sharing the same backcourt with former Los Angeles Lakers guard and New York Knicks Head Coach, Derek Fisher.

For More Information:
Joshua C. Jackson, SID: (904) 868-6596
Henry Smith, SID: (904) 470-8045

EWC Ribbon-Cutting

The EWC Ribbon-Cutting for the James Weldon Johnson (JWJ) Bldg. and Ground Blessing for the upcoming “Nat Glover Community Field and Stadium.”


Edward Waters College will host a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the newly acquired James Weldon Johnson building.  EWC supporters are invited to join EWC’s 29th President, Dr. Nathaniel Glover; the 115th Bishop in the African Methodist Episcopal Church of the 11th District, Bishop Adam J. Richardson Jr.; and Jacksonville Mayor, Lenny Curry, for the JWJ ribbon-cutting ceremony on Tuesday, June 19, 2018, from 11:00 a.m. – 12:15 p.m. Following the Ribbon Cutting, EWC officials will bless the grounds of the upcoming “Nat Glover Community Field and Stadium.”

The JWJ building was called the James Weldon Johnson Academic and Career Training Center, which was used as a school for kids who are behind in grade level with the Bridge to Success overage program. The Duval County School Board has since moved that program to another school. Today, the JWJ Building serves as the home for the Edward Waters College Department of Teacher Education and Urban Studies program.

The Nat Glover Community Field and Stadium is part of the $8.5 million upgrade given to EWC by the City of Jacksonville. It will serve as community filed because the community will have access to the walking track and community little league football games will be played here.