10 HBCUs That Graduate The Most Black STEM Students

The American Institutes for Research (AIR) found in 2014 that 72 percent of Black graduates with a STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) doctorate from an historically Black college and university earned their undergraduate degree at an HBCU as well. The top colleges producing STEM graduates are listed below. These top universities and colleges are proof that HBCUs matter and produce high-quality graduates.


Howard University

The Washington D.C.-based university awards the most STEM degrees — 33 percent of all STEM degrees given out by HBCUs. Howard is at the top of many major categories, based on the study. In biological and biomedical sciences, Howard ranks No. 1, awarding 45 percent of all degrees from HBCUs in the field.


Meharry Medical College

Meharry Medical College, based in Nashville, awards 14 percent of STEM degrees primarily in the biological and biomedical sciences category.

10 Brilliant Black Mathematicians Who Never Received the Praise They Deserved


Euphemia Haynes (Sept. 11, 1890 – July 25, 1980)

Haynes  was a mathematician and educator and the first African-American woman to earn a doctorate in mathematics from the Catholic University of America in 1943. For roughly 47 years, Haynes was a devoted math teacher in Washington, D.C. She taught at local high schools and at universities. In 1930, she taught at Miner Teachers College. While there, she served as chair of the mathematics department and the Division of Mathematics and Business Education. In 1966, Haynes was the first woman to chair the District of Columbia School Board, and during her short period there, she was vital in the integration of the D.C. public schools. 



Gloria Conyers Hewitt (born Oct. 26, 1935)

Hewitt earned her bachelor’s in secondary mathematics education at Fisk University in 1956. She attended the University of Washington and received her master’s and doctorate in mathematics in 1962. One of her major career highlights was in the 1990s, when she served as chair of the mathematics department at the University of Montana. Hewitt was also one of the first Black women to be awarded a mathematics reward of any kind. She was awarded the National Science Foundation postdoctoral Science Faculty Fellowship in the 1990s.

10 of the Best HBCUs for Students Pursuing STEM Careers

As our world depends more and more on technology, STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) careers will be in high demand. This list shows the historically Black colleges and universities that awarded the most STEM degrees to students within the sample year of 2008-09. According to a 2012 study, Texas Southern professors Emiel W. Owens, Andrea J. Shelton, Collette M. Bloom and  J. Kenyatta Cavil also found that the schools listed below have produced the most STEM graduates from HBCUs.


Howard University

Located in the heart of Washington D.C., this university awarded 166 different STEM degrees.

vier_University__New_Orleans__public_domain__0Xavier University of Louisiana

This university in New Orleans awarded 159 science, technology, engineering and math degrees.

Paid Less and Paying More: Black College Graduates Drowning in Student Loan Debt

University researchers revealed that Black college graduates are typically forced to take on much more student loan debt than their white counterparts.

At the end of what seems like an endless journey for a diploma, many Black college graduates are finding that their diploma was much more expensive than they could have even imagined.

Half of all Black graduates said they had to take on at least $25,000 in student loans before they completed their undergraduate degrees between 2000 and 2014.

Less than 35 percent of white graduates had to take on that same amount.

According to Cecilia Rouse, dean of the Woodrow Wilson School at Princeton University, the difference is all about income.

“It’s about the fact that there is a black-white gap in income and wealth, and that’s what underlies this gap in borrowing as well,” Rouse told The Atlantic.

With Black households typically having less income than white households, there is less money to invest in a child’s education.

The Atlantic reports that the average Black household in the U.S. makes less than one-tenth of the accumulated wealth of the average white household and that income gap has only grown over time.

According to researchers at Brandeis University, the wealth gap between Black and white households has tripled over the past 25 years.

With Black graduates drowning in debt after they graduate, it becomes nearly impossible for many of them to fully reap the benefits of the diploma they just borrowed thousands of dollars for.

“If the debt burden is too high, students from low- and moderate-income families will have trouble making the economic gains that we all know a college degree offers,” said Elizabeth Baylor, associate director for postsecondary education at the Center for American Progress.

To make matters worse, those same Black graduates are struggling to find well-paying jobs.

A large number of Black college graduates between the ages of 22 and 27 are being forced to settle for jobs that don’t require college degrees or severely underpay them.

Black graduates are paying more for their diplomas and getting paid less for their work despite earning degrees in their perspective fields.

With that troubling fact in mind, Rouse still hopes to encourage minorities to pursue higher education.

“Education remains a very solid investment for students in terms of increasing their earning capacity and future labor-market outcomes,” she said.

Rouse believes students should become more aware of the different repayment options they have available to them instead of refusing to pay for college at all.

State governments should also find ways to invest in education, according to Baylor.

“Students of color are increasingly a larger part of our higher education system,” Baylor said. “So as state investment in public colleges has retreated in the past decade, it’s important to make sure that those schools remain affordable to students of color who are a big share of public colleges.”