Monthly Archives: June 2013

The HBCU Money™ Weekly Market Watch

Our Money Matters /\ June 21, 2013


African American Publicly Traded Companies

Citizens Bancshares Georgia (CZBS) $5.60 (0.00% UNCH)

Radio One (ROIA) $2.43 (0.00% UNCH)

African Stock Exchanges

Bourse Regionale des Valeurs Mobilieres (BRVM)  209.01 (0.89% DN)

Botswana Stock Exchange (BSE)  8 621.58 (0.01% UP)

Ghana Stock Exchange (GSE)  1 893.02 (57.79% UP)*

Nairobi Stock Exchange (NSE)  119.64 (N/A)

Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE) 39 016.62 (1.31% DN)

International Stock Exchanges

New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) 9 003.55 (0.08% UP)

London Stock Exchange (LSE)  3 236.60 (0.72% DN)

Tokyo Stock Exchange (TOPIX)  1 099.40 (0.70% UP)


Gold 1 291.30 (0.42% UP)

Oil 93.37 (1.86% DN)

*Ghana Stock Exchange shows current year to date movement. All others daily.

All quotes reported as of 5:00 PM Eastern Time Zone

7 Out Of 10 Worst States In America For Dental Health Are HBCU States – HBCU Opportunity?

Find a need and fill it. – A.G. Gaston


Poor dental hygiene has been well documented as a gateway or precursor to other more serious illness in health. It is of very little surprise that recent data compiled by Bloomberg’s Visual Data, 4 out of the 5 worst dental health offenders are in the deep south and the fifth offender is West Virginia. Dr. Mark Baumgartner of the Dental Clinic of Marshfield notes “research indicates periodontal disease can increase your risk of heart attack or stroke; increase the risk of delivering a preterm, low birth weight baby; and exacerbate diabetes and kidney disease.” The data shown below is for the overall states, and as with most health statistics it does not become hard to assume that African American statistics are worse than the overall state of affairs.

Screen shot 2013-05-29 at 2.01.49 PM

There are currently only 2 HBCU dental schools. Meharry Medical College in Tennessee and Howard University’s Dental School in the nation’s capital of Washington D.C. Only Meharry is located in a state of the top ten worst dental health in Tennessee which ranks fourth. It goes without saying that if Africa America was a country, having only two dental schools to produce enough dentist to service a population of 40 million citizens would be leaving its citizens dramatically underserved.

The data gives HBCUs a strong starting point for making cases that there is an opportunity to provide service to not only the African American population but the state’s population and could drive in much needed capital inflows from other Diaspora groups. But where are the priorities to develop high value alumni? The type of alumni who are in professions that have the ability to not only meet a need but generate top percentile salaries. An HBCU like Jackson State University made a concerted effort to obtain funding for a new football stadium to the tune of $200 million. Jackson State University is located in Mississippi, the state with the worst dental health. The university has not produced a NFL draft pick since 2008 and only 86 in its history. Meanwhile, if that same funding push had been aimed at developing a dental school where the median salary of a dentist is $150,000 and just achieved the same number of graduates Meharry’s School of Dentistry has with 60 students graduating per year the income pool of that graduating class would be approximately $9 million annually. The last time I checked someone could have a career as a dentist for thirty plus years while the average football career is four. We are annually talking about producing a consistent group of alumni whose lifetime earnings could be $270 million versus hoping to produce a few NFL players whose career earnings will be in the neighborhood of $2.4 million and have an 80 percent chance of going broke after they stop playing. Remember, just ONE class of 60 dental school graduates is worth $270 million over their lifetime in earnings.

This is not intended to pick on Jackson State University. The same could be said for a number of HBCUs who are chasing new stadiums and the hopes of athletic windfalls that is regulated to a very small group of HWCUs who have alumni in the hundreds of thousands. Many among them are full service universities that have boosters like dentist earning six-figure salaries that allow them to pump donations into their athletic programs. The demographics allow for the profitability not the stadium.

Ultimately, it comes down to priorities and strategy. There is so much opportunity (and revenue potential) simply fufilling the needs of our communities. 1890 HBCUs especially have an immense opportunity in servicing rural America where dental health tends to be poorer because of lack of access. Using their agricultural extension to build out these programs and services as well as obtain access to funding through the Department of Agriculture gives an easier entry point to building dental schools. Again, it takes creativity and vision to expand the possibilities and push the boundaries. Ultimately, if health is wealth, then when are we going to start making investments in our own?

The HBCUpreneur Corner – Tennessee State University’s Trina Morris & Style Root


Name: Trina Morris

Alma Mater: Tennessee State University

Business Name & Description: Style Root Inc., a public relations and personal development consulting firm

What year did you found your company? Started as a freelancer (sole proprietor) in 2002 and officially launched as an incorporated business in 2005.

What was the most exciting and/or fearful moment during your HBCUpreneur career?

Exciting- Every time I saw one of my clients in the press (print, online or TV), I was over the moon! Every time I proved that my petite PR powerhouse could contend with the PR giants (via international clients, corporate sponsorships, national campaigns, etc.), I was beyond delighted. When I would see the images from events that I produced, I was truly proud. Doing PR is an art as much as a strategy for me, so my events were like live exhibitions ; )

Fearful- In 2009-10, when the recession hit hard. Across several industries, PR was “the last hired and the first fired.” Also when ‘Web 2.0’ launched with social media and the abyss of the blogosphere. Whether other PR pros will admit it or not, that immediately pulled the rug from under all of us. We had to learn Web 2.0, get on the other side of (this new way) and figure out how to make it ‘billable’- in spite of it being something the client could do for free/on their own. As a very small firm, I was stressed OUT. This was also amidst a print publishing collapse. Thus, my media services and contacts were in jeopardy and I was slowly melting.

What made you want to start your own company? Networking and exploring NYC provided me with loads of connections. These industry and creative professionals (rising and seasoned) wanted to build their brands in some way, but were too close (to them) to have an objective view and fresh positioning approach. Its like they were Style Root clients-in-waiting, so I knew starting my own firm was inevitable and fast-approaching ; )

Who was the most influential person/people for you during your time in college? My sophomore Resident Assistant (RA). Her style and charm were matchless, and I knew I could learn soo much from her. Our relationship evolved upon me joining her/our sorority, and I will forever refer to her as my ‘special’ sister.

TSU’s PR Director at the time. Once I realized that Public Relations was ‘the name of this mystery career’ I duly researched, I asked to volunteer in her on-campus office. She solidified my interest in PR, and was the catalyst for my decision to pursue my Masters degree (in PR).

Trina HBCUMoney Shot

My English Professor (from hell) whose academic approach challenged me in a way I’d never been before. She made me analyze and express myself from a deeply authentic place, and defend myself in a way that has served me tremendously- as a female, black woman, intellectual and communications professional. In the end, I waved my white flag (in surrender) and she applauded my growth and talent. Turns out, she was God-sent ; )

How do you handle complex problems? To quote Nina Simone “Oh I’m just a soul whose intentions are good, Lord please don’t let me be misunderstood.”

Prayer, Yoga, Meditation, Tears, Counsel from my closest confidants, Inspirational Reading, Long Showers, Laughter, Wine- lol

What is something you wish you had known prior to starting your company? ‘Exit’ or let me say, ‘Growth’ Strategies- ones that are not purely professional, but also personal. When you are young and inspired, you dare think that you’d ever tire of the work you’re doing, or that things will change (for the bad or good). I wish someone had told me that it was not just okay to rebrand myself/business, but its necessary for long-term success. Internal and external influences must be factored in on a regular basis. OMG, I was sooo emotional about the whole process. Part of me felt like I was betraying myself/business/clients/industry, or claiming defeat. But thank God, today… I know better ; )

What do you believe HBCUs can do to spur more innovation and entrepreneurship while their students are in school either as undergraduate or graduate students? If I answer that, I will expose Style Root’s new product details prematurely. I’ll just say stay tuned for YouArePR, launching this Fall. Also this summer, I am hosting workshops (locally) which examine how to be #wholeselfemployed. My hope is to bring these unique solutions to HBCUs directly.

How do you deal with rejection? (Refer to my answer to the Question How do you handle complex problems?)And actually… I’ve gotten much better. As I’ve mentioned, the recession, Web 2.0 and my subsequent lifestyle changes were like my training grounds. I just recently re-tweeted PR veteran @TerrieWilliams who said, “Sometimes the bad things that happen in our lives put us directly on the path to the best things that will ever happen to us.” Its true. So to answer your question, I think rejection is simply the divine means to reception ; )

When you have down time how do you like to spend it? I have the biggest ‘auntie crush’ on my 1-yr old niece, so whenever I can hop on a plane (to the Midwest) to love her up… I do. As an entrepreneur, college professor and yoga instructor, I have a strict schedule and mainly live from a “To Do List”. Thus, I enjoy breaking up the monotony via travel- domestic or international. With others or solo. I’m definitely a beach bum, but when I can’t get there, I simply follow the sun and go on ‘staycation’ (a rooftop, park, backyard, spa, or hey… my stoop!). I also enjoy cooking. Researching and trying new recipes is my nerdland (s/o to @MHarrisPerry), and pop culture (media, fashion, music and art) will forever be a major source of inspiration.

What was your most memorable HBCU memory? Its soooo hard to just give one memory when you are a TSU alum!! All of our Greek Weeks were INSANELY entertaining (Skeeee weeeee!! to my Alpha Psi Sorors of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc!!) and Homecoming was just BANANAS!! I was also on the Student Union Board of Governors (SUBG), which coordinated nearly all of the student activities throughout the year. So I could pick ANY of those events between 1996-2000… honestly, the prequel to my PR career ; )

In leaving is there any advice you have for budding HBCUpreneurs? Take personal development as seriously as professional development. Accept that you aren’t just good at one thing (and honor them as ‘transitional skills/talents’). Know your core values and deal-breakers. Volunteer. Slow down. Evolve. Do yoga ; )

The HBCU Endowment Feature – Coppin State University


School Name: Coppin State University

Median Cost of Attendance: $25 593

Undergraduate Population: 3 295

Endowment Needed: $1 686 545 760

Analysis: Coppin State University needs an approximately $1.7 billion endowment for all of its undergraduates to attend debt free. The university is located in Baltimore, Maryland. Coppin State University has become an orphan among stepchildren. The state of Maryland of has historically been brutal to HBCUs and it does not help that Coppin State University shares the state’s largest city with 2 other HBCUs and John Hopkins, the nation’s leading research institution. It is considered by many to be a diamond in the rough. Unfortunately, it is hard to see anyone uncovering that rough so long as the school remains in Baltimore. Location seems to be harming and not helping Coppin State University. It has no room to establish an identity or expand more importantly. The school should consider a relocation to Waldorf, Maryland which is located over a hour away from Baltimore. Waldorf is the 5th largest city in the state and has a 54 percent African American population. Only Baltimore has a higher African American percentage of African Americans. This space could give Coppin State University the opportunity to recruit students in Baltimore who might want to go “away” from home without being too far. Coppin State University has been known for producing quality nurses and teachers. The problem lies in that neither of these occupations produce the high quality donors that universities need to build their endowments. Of course if it honed its nursing program on the specialties that were the top earners that would greatly help. Coppin State University badly needs to find a professional niche it can grow. No small task and one that requires understanding the lay of the land, vision, and leadership. All of which Coppin State University has been lacking for many years now. Despite many problems there is no denying that Coppin State University possesses something special it just needs the space to show what it can do.

As always it should be noted that endowments provide a myriad of subsidies to the university for everything from scholarship, faculty & administration salaries, research, and much more.

HBCU Money™ Business Book Feature – Beginner’s Guide to Creating Mobile Apps


Beginner’s Guide to Creating Mobile Apps provides a one-stop repository with all of the information needed to successfully create and publish an iPhone/iPad and Android application to the App Store and Google Play.

Creating mobile applications is a great way to earn passive income, whether you are a stay-at-home parent, student, entrepreneur, or work in a traditional setting.

Several people have had the desire to create a mobile application based on a great idea, but never put action to it because of their lack of technical proficiency.

You do not need to be or become a technical expert in mobile development to create an application, and the author demonstrates how this can be accomplished step-by-step.

The author provides:

-Her experiences in developing her first application and pitfalls to avoid
-How to get established with Apple and Google
-How to choose the appropriate graphic design
-How to outsource the technical development and graphic design
-How to select a contractor
-A sample job announcement
-A sample non-disclosure agreement
-How to price and budget accordingly
-Recommended dos and don’ts
-Marketing tips