The focus on STEM education has never been greater than it is today. The cross-disciplinary approach to teaching Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics in schools has received national attention. Many states have even added a STEM Diploma among the pathways that a student can pursue to graduate from high school. Per data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, career prospects for students in STEM fields will far surpass those in other disciplines.
With the founder of Focusing On Me, Inc. having a strong passion for STEM and one of the tiers of our mission is career development and career identity; Focusing On Me, Inc. has taken a stance on STEM and STEAM education for educators as well as students. The founder and program director have strong Science, Technology and Engineering backgrounds. Being engineers and technology experts the team has joined together in assisting and supporting K-12 schools and organizations with the latest techniques and strategies to present and teach STEM and STEAM.
A native of Red Top (Johns Island), SC, La’Quata Sumter started her higher education matriculation at Darton College in Albany, GA with an Associates of Science in Computer Information Systems. Ms. Sumter graduated from Albany State University in Albany, Georgia with a degree in Computer Science, received credits in Software Engineering from Florida A & M University and has a Master’s degree from Georgia Southern University in Instructional Technology. Currently she is pursuing her Ph.D in Learning Technologies from the University of North Texas. In May of 2018, she completed her Ed.S in Instructional Technology from Georgia Southern University. Recently, obtaining her Remote Pilot Certificate.
Ms. Sumter served as Computer Information Systems Instructor at Albany Technical College. Ms. Sumter brings more than ten years of experience and various certifications in the field of technology. Currently, Ms. Sumter is the Electrical and Computer Engineering Program Chair/Instructor as well as the Founder of Focusing On Me, Inc.(501c3) and Focusing On Me Droneworks, LLC.
La’Quata Sumter, CEO & Founder
La’Quata’s vision is to increase the knowledge and interest of young individuals in the world of Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics (STEAM) by making Electrical and Computer Engineering FUN by using Project Based Learning.
Dr. Dereca Hubbard, Program Director
When considering career choices, be it academia or industry, I knew that academia was the best fit for me. Academia provides an atmosphere for one to be motivated and an opportunity to teach, advise, inspire, and educate. Through hard-work and determination, I have been able to achieve, both, intrinsic and extrinsic accomplishments throughout my academic career in the science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics (STEAM) arena. Being an educator allows me to shed light and equip students with the necessary tools to become exemplary professionals in the science and engineering fields.
I currently serve as the Engineering Instructor for Albany Technical College Engineering Preparatory Academy (ATCEPA). Prior to joining ATCEPA, I worked as the Engineering and Technology teacher and Robotics Coach at Monroe Comprehensive High School in the Dougherty County School System. I am “proud” product of the Dougherty County School System. Thus, after completing high school at Dougherty Comprehensive High School. I went on to Albany State University where I obtained my Bachelor’s degree in Chemistry.
While at Albany State, I had the opportunity to participate in Tuskegee University’s Research Experience for Undergraduates for two consecutive summers. It was there that I made up mind to attend graduate school at Tuskegee University and I did just that. I graduated from Tuskegee University with my Master’s and Ph.D. degrees in Materials Science and Engineering, respectively.
From my experiences, the realization of the need for more African-American women professors further fueled my desire to obtain a career in higher education. I have developed an appreciation for the critical role that education plays in the improvement of the quality of life of young people. I am looking forward to the prospects of being able to share the knowledge that I have attained to future scientists and engineers in a teaching environment.
As a native of Albany, GA, I would like to give back to the community that instilled in me the love of all things STEM. My teaching philosophy has a lot to do with the passion and hope to be able to pour into students the way that so many amazing people have poured into me.