Black On Campus
Higher Education and the African American Experience

Georgia Tech #1 for Black Engineers

July 19th, 2007 by Ajuan Mance

More evidence to suggest that majority white colleges and universities are becoming more effective at education African American students:

Exduco.net reports that during the 2005 – 2006 school year Georgia Tech was the top producer of African American engineers in the United States, graduating 120 Black students from their undergrad engineering program. This figure represents a slight increase over the previous school year, when 117 African Americans completed bachelor’s degrees in this field.

During the same school year, Georgia Tech was also the number one producer of Black engineering Ph.D.s, with 11 Afrfican American students completing their doctorates, up from 4 during the previous year.

The Exduco.net article also lists the other top producers of Black engineers, at both the undergraduate and doctoral levels:

Other top five degree producers at the undergraduate level include North Carolina A&T State University, North Carolina State University at Raleigh, Southern University and A&M College and Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University.
[...]
Other top five producers of African-American doctoral engineering graduates include Morgan State University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), University of Florida and North Carolina A&T State University.

Georgia Tech faculty and administrators attribute their success at both recruiting and retaining African American engineers to strong co-curricular programs aimed at both drawing strong Black students to engineering and supporting those African Americans who pursue degrees in that field.

In particular, I would like to call attention to the FACES program (at http://www.faces.gatech.edu/2007/), which encourages undergraduate engineers to consider doctoral study and careers in academe, and the FOCUS program (http://www.focus.gatech.edu/friends/), which encourages high school students with and interest in math and science and undergraduates in engineering to pursue further study in this field.

Kudos to Georgia Tech! When it comes to Black students in engineering this institution definitely “gets it.” While pundits and think tanks debate the value of affirmative action and ethnic diversity as though Black college success is an as-yet unproven abstraction, universities like Georgia Tech proceed with a belief in the ability of all students to reach their academic goals.

Posted by Ajuan Mance

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Posted in Academia, African American Students, Black Engineers, Black PhDs, Black Students, Engineering, Georgia Tech, My Favorite Blogs

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  1. Isaiah Marshall

    At the point when Georgia Tech and other universities will REALLY “get it”, they will stop evaluating their prospective and current students thru any racial lens at all. I’m saddened by the fact that in the year 2007, many of my fellow black peers in college still feel the need to pursue a distinctively race-focused education rather than refusing to let their race factor into the equation at all. Thankfully, I have several black friends who refuse to cave-in to the political correctness of certain race-based special treatment programs (though in fairness, not all race-based programs are inherently preferential) and choose to compete on a level playing field against other students of all races for the top academic and professional slots. Not surprisingly, what I keep seeing over and over is that the black students who have the greatest discipline and talent will usually excel academically and professionally without any special treatment, while those lacking either discipline, natural ability or both will very often choose to make excuses or receive an unfair and unethical advantage to place them ahead of some of their more qualified peers.

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