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Dillard University outranks many others in black physics grads

By ERRIN HAINES WHACK | AP: In this Tuesday, May 16, 2017 photo, Dr. Trivia Frazier, a graduate of Dillard University, works in her lab in New Orleans. Frazier returns to her alma mater frequently to inspire the next generation. Dillard University in New Orleans graduates more physics majors - and, notably, more female physics majors - than far bigger schools with more resources. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)

One of the smallest historically black colleges in the U.S. boasts a huge accomplishment: pound for pound, tiny Dillard University in New Orleans graduates more physics majors -- and, notably, more female physics majors -- than far bigger schools with more resources.

With an enrollment of 1,200, Dillard ranks second in the country in black physics undergrads.

The point was punctuated at Dillard’s recent commencement exercises, which featured a keynote address from actress and singer Janelle Monae, one of the stars of “Hidden Figures.” The award-winning film tells the story of the black women scientists who fought Jim Crow while doing essential mathematical calculations for America’s space program.

Janelle at Stage
Click for more commencements photos

“To see that we have this significant number of women representing (science and math) in the way that they are is a blessing to America and our future,” Monae told The Associated Press in an interview before the May 13 graduation. “To have physicists coming out of New Orleans who are African-American women ... that’s a huge deal.”

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Dillard University

2601 Gentilly Boulevard
New Orleans, Louisiana 70122
504.283.8822

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