Helping Girls “Get” IT

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ECPI University’s Newport News campus and the Peninsula Council for Workforce Development hosted more than 40 young ladies from Bethel High School in Hampton for a very special event called “Girls Get IT.” It’s a program designed to expose teenage girls to careers in information technology and engineering.

Today’s event featured a problem solving exercise whereby students utilized technology to overcome theoretical challenges, as well as a slate of guest speakers. One of those speakers was ECPI University alum Nikki Tarnacki who works as a Network Engineer for NCI, Inc. at Langley Air Force Base.  ”This program meets a tremendously important need,” says ECPI Newport News Campus President Dr. John Olson. “The number of women in STEM fields is disproportionately low. So, we hope that events like this will broaden awareness and encourage these young ladies to pursue careers in IT and engineering.”



High School Game Enthusiasts Win Scholarships

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Congratulations to three Virginia Beach high school students who competed at ECPI University’s Video Game Challenge. Each of these young men have been awarded $1,000 scholarships:

1st Place – Antonio Brundage of Princess Anne High School

2nd Place – Dylan O’Brien of Ocean Lakes High School

3rd Place – Steven Hartman of Ocean Lakes High School

To think that someone probably once told them that video games are a waste of time!

CIV Students Compete to Represent School at Meatball Challenge


Chef Chris Jones from Riverstone Chophouse samples a Chorizo Meatball with Salsa Roja.


Student winners Mike Miles and Jason Lord.








Meatball mania has overtaken ECPI University’s Culinary Institute of Virginia (CIV), at least for today!  Fifteen student teams from the Norfolk and Newport News locations went head-to-head this morning in a competition to create the most imaginative, tasty meatballs. And there was more on the line than simple bragging rights.

The winner represents CIV at the Crazy Good Meatball Challenge this Sunday at the Mid-Atlantic Home and Garden Show in Virginia Beach. Presiding over that competition is none other than Chef Mike Isabella, Top Chef Contestant, famous restaurant owner, and author of the book, Crazy Good Italian. He will lead a contingent of local chefs in deciding who makes the best meatballs in Coastal Virginia.

Today’s winner at the CIV competition: Mike Miles and Jason Lord and their crazy-delicious Moroccan Meatballs with Yogurt Sauce. Some of the other lip-smacking entries included Bacon Caprese Meatballs, Chorizo Meatballs with Salsa Roja, Italian Mushroom Risotto Meatballs with Spicy Tomato Jam, Greek Meatballs with Tzatziki Sauce, Smokey Meatball Au Gratin, Carib-Asian Chicken Meatballs.

Everyone at the Culinary Institute of Virginia would like to thank our guest chefs who judged today’s event: Elizabeth Kloc from Felinni’s, Matt Gibbs from Todd Jurich’s Bistro, David Frohlich from Braise, Jose Perez from Cedar Point Country Club, Chris Jones from Riverstone Chophouse, Peter Tseng from Westminster Canterbury, and Leon Buenviaje from CP Shuckers.

“One of the most difficult things to do is to take an abstract idea and bring it to fruition on a plate,” says Peter Tseng. Several of the chefs praised the students for their imagination, simple, elegant flavors, and presentation. As for today’s winner, Fellinis’ Elizabeth Kloc may have said it best. “When I tasted it, it was like immediate ‘WOW’ factor.”


Criminal Justice Students Experience Reality without Danger

Milo Sim

Advanced Firearm Simulator Provides Hands-On Experience to Help Students Learn How to “Make the Right Call”

ECPI University is pleased to announce it has acquired a Milo Range Pro v4, an advanced interactive augmented-reality training system designed to enhance use-of-force and firearms training. Used by law enforcement agencies around the country, it is an important tool for the development of situational assessment skills.

“While it may seem like a shooting simulator, the Milo offers so much more,” says ECPI University Associate Dean of Criminal Justice Ife Alexander-Caines. “It is an excellent tool for the development of communication and critical thinking skills, especially when working as a team.

ECPI University has a long history of providing its students with hands-on learning experiences and this simulator gives them an unprecedented opportunity to prepare themselves for the real world. The practice scenarios will allow students to determine when to utilize verbal conflict management skills and when responses need to be escalated. Students can also practice working as partners when they navigate the various scenarios.”