The National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE) began in April 1975 at Purdue University. The Society of Black Engineers at Purdue University planned a national conference, which was attended by African American engineering students from various parts of the United States and Canada. They came to lay the foundation for an organization which would promote the achievement of African Americans in engineering. In December 1976, NSBE was incorporated in the state of Texas as a tax-exempt organization under Section 501 (c)(3) of the Internal Revenue code and is a Non-Profit organization.

In March 1988, at NSBE’s 14th Annual National Conference, the organization approved the adoption of NSBE Alumni Extension (NSBE-AE) with NSBE-AE representing members of the professional engineering community. To better represent today’s technical professional membership and the long-range vision of being a premier organization for those working in STEM fields, it was proposed that the name of the Alumni Extension be changed. The NSBE Senate approved a constitutional amendment at the 39th Annual Convention in Indianapolis, Ind. which formally transformed the NSBE Alumni Extension into NSBE Professionals, effective Aug. 1, 2013.

The transition to NSBE Professionals ushers in a new era in which we strive to become an organization focused not only on giving back to its communities and mentoring students pursuing STEM careers, but also on providing resources, networking and support for our members working in academia and industry, as they pursue professional success. The name is part of a larger strategy to provide mentoring, continuing education, networking and career opportunities to increase the value of your professional membership. As the name change is implemented, you’ll see a number of changes in our documentation, marketing materials and communication channels. These changes will be made throughout the current membership year in an effort to align these items with our brand.

The objectives of NSBE-Professionals are as follows:

  • Represent students and professionals on issues and developments that affect the careers of African American engineers
  • Encourage and advise African American pre-college and college students in their pursuit of an engineering career
  • Stimulate and develop pre-college students interest in the various engineering disciplines
  • Increase the number of African American students studying engineering at both the undergraduate and graduate levels
  • Develop the technical and professional skills of its members
  • Encourage members to seek advanced degrees in engineering or related fields and to obtain professional engineering certification
  • Promote public awareness of engineering and the opportunities for African Americans in the profession

NSBE-Professionals currently has chartered chapters and financial members throughout the country divided into six geographical regions, and in Canada, the Caribbean and West African. An individual qualifies as an Alumni Member by possessing a B.S. or advanced degree in engineering, engineering technology, or applied physical sciences and having received a registered membership card through the payment of annual membership fees. All other individuals who do not meet the educational requirements qualify as an Affiliated NSBE Professional Member.