About 150 people are expected to attend the National Society of Black Engineers' regional leadership conference in New Orleans this weekend.

Rose Telus, who serves as a regional chair for NSBE, said the conference at the University of New Orleans started Friday and ends Sunday. It could be a trial for a larger NSBE conference in a few years. "We're very excited about New Orleans," said Telus, who is a graduate student at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. "We have the students from St. Aug involved. People from all over the region are coming to train and socialize and get ready for the upcoming year."

The NSBE is looking at taking a bigger role in social issues, in light of things such as the shootings of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile. The organization launched a fundraising campaign to get safe drinking water to the residents of Flint, Michigan. The goal is to increase the number of black engineers and have them make a difference in their communities.

According to Telus, the NSBE has about 30,000 members, ranging from students to professional members. There are chapters across the U.S. and in Mexico, Europe and Africa.  

Follow Timothy Boone on Twitter, @TCB_TheAdvocate.