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Records of the National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE)

Identifier: 31/6/216

  • Staff Only
  • No requestable containers

Scope and Contents

Collection has been arranged in two series. The first, National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE) records (1995-2003), consists of records pertaining to the national organization, including the Society constitution, by-laws, and Position Manual detailing officers' roles and responsibilities, as well as the Chapter Survival Guide for geographic Region IV (Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, and Wisconsin), and documents from the 2002-2003 Regional Leadership Conference. The second series, NSBE Northwestern University Chapter records (1981-1982, 1992-2008), consists of records of the Northwestern University Chapter specifically, including the contents of binders of Chapter records which were kept by academic year (such as General and Executive Board meeting materials, chapter policies and procedures, event and programming materials, strategic planning documents, chapter histories, corporate and member solicitation materials, Industrial Advisory Board records, and records of the Northwestern Engineering Student Council). Series also includes a binder of records of the Academic Excellence Chair, records of the chapter's Pre-College Initiative (PCI) Program, correspondence to Corporate Friends, and a binder of membership records including attendance and interest/satisfaction surveys, as well as surveys pertaining to particular events.


  • 1981-1982, 1992-2008


Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open for research. This collection is stored off-site and requires two business days advance notice for retrieval. Please contact the McCormick Library at or 847-491-3635 for more information or to schedule an appointment to view the collection. Two files may only be accessed by members of NSBE to protect privacy.

Biographical / Historical

"In 1974, Edward Coleman, Anthony Harris, Brian Harris, Stanley L. Kirtley, John W. Logan Jr., and George Smith the “Chicago Six”, along with a host of other Purdue Engineering students and professor Arthur J. Bond, Ph.D. formed the first chapter of the, then, Society of Black Engineers. After contacting the other 288 accredited engineering schools, the Purdue SBE held its first annual meeting in April 1975 with 48 students from 32 schools. It was at that meeting that they unanimously voted to form the National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE).... In 1976, NSBE was incorporated as a 501 c(3) national non-profit, and John Cason became the first elected president of the organization. Two years later in 1978, Virginia Booth became the first female national chair and the first chair to serve two (2) terms. Since then, NSBE Alumni (now NSBE Professionals) was formed in 1989, and, in 1990, the first NSBE Jr. chapters were formed, setting a firm foundation to realize the NSBE mission [to increase the number of culturally responsible Black Engineers who excel academically, succeed professionally and positively impact the community]." Society history and mission statement from the NSBE website, As of 2016, the Northwestern University Chapter of NSBE had about 30 members, and its efforts include supporting incoming Black engineering students by "collecting class notes from older students, offering professional networking events and providing tips for job fairs and interviews," as well as conducting outreach and collaborative programming with Evanston Township High School students, where they have a NSBE Jr. chapter. In May 2012, the Northwestern University Chapter was honored by the national organization as the "Large Chapter of the Year" for their work in community outreach, professional development, and academic excellence. They also received the Highest Regional Chapter GPA award for the 2018-2019 year. Information from: "One McCormick Lecture Series Kicks Off with National Society of Black Engineers," lecture by Leah Payne, President of NSBE-NU, Northwestern McCormick School of Engineering - Engineering News Oct 8, 2020. "Northwestern's National Society of Black Engineers Named 'Large Chapter of the Year'." Northwestern Engineering. May 18, 2012. Mariana Alfaro, "Facing underrepresentation, black STEM students find support in one another," The Daily Northwestern, 2016, October 20.


0.8 Linear Feet (2 boxes)

Language of Materials



Collection consists of the records of National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE), predominantly of the Northwestern University Chapter of NSBE, spanning two boxes and dating from 1981-1982 and 1992-2008.


Collection has been arranged in two series: National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE) records (1995-2003) and NSBE Northwestern University Chapter records (1981-1982, 1992-2008). Within series, files have been arranged in chronological order.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Received 2013, December 1 (Accession #13-253-31) from Iboro Ikene of the National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE), Northwestern Chapter.

Related Materials

See also: File “National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE), 1989–1998” (Box 28, Folder 7) in collection Records of the Associated Student Government (identifier 31/5/1).

Guide to the Records of the National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE)
Natalia Gutiérrez-Jones
2021 November
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Library Details

Part of the Northwestern University Archives Repository

Deering Library, Level 3
1970 Campus Dr.
Evanston IL 60208-2300 US