Dr. Valerie Bennett is a native of Atlanta, Georgia. She received a Bachelor of Engineering Degree in Mechanical Engineering, from Vanderbilt University and received her Master of Science and Doctor of Philosophy Degree in Mechanical Engineering, both from the Georgia Institute of Technology. Dr. Bennett then worked as a software consultant for Manhattan Associates then joined Morehouse College as an Assistant Professor where she taught Engineering and Physics courses as part of the Dual Degree Engineering Program for four and a half years. She then joined the faculty at the Westminster Schools in Atlanta where she taught Physics and was one of the two founding Coaches of the Robotics Program. As the Head Coach of the award-winning High School Robotics Team, the team has won several Regional Competitions and has been recognized on the International Level. She has also served on the Georgia FIRST Robotics Regional Committee in the planning of Regional Events. In addition, she is Co-Coordinator of the Georgia FIRST Robotics Mentor Advisory Council. To expose student to the excitement and importance of STEM, she worked as the Physics Research Coordinator for the TRIO Program as part of the Upward Bound Initiative. She was also awarded the Innovative Teacher award by the Georgia Independent Schools Association. She is currently an Engineering Professor and Regents’ Engineering Transfer Program Advisor at Georgia Perimeter College.
Dr. Bennett has been a Research Coordinator for the Peach State Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation Program and has been awarded the Innovative Teaching Award by the Georgia Independent Schools Association. She has served as the Morehouse Coordinator for the Dual Degree Engineering Program and Faculty Advisor for several student Organizations such as National Society of Black Engineers, Society of Physics Students, Society of Women Engineers (Spelman College), and Packard Scholars. Her community involvement includes serving as a Board Member and STEM Advisory Board Member of the Atlanta Cares Mentoring Organization, which was established by Susan Taylor, former editor of Essence Magazine. In the Greater Metropolitan Atlanta Chapter of Jack and Jill of America, she serves as one of the lead Teen Sponsors and has organized several community projects. She has been recently appointed as the Director of the newly formed Robotics Ministry as part of the Scholastic Motivation Ministries.