The First African American to Earn a PhD from an American University.
Born in 1852 in New Haven, Connecticut, Edward Alexander Bouchet graduated valedictorian from Hopkins Grammar School in 1870. That same year, he began his studies at Yale University. He completed his bachelor’s degree in 1874. Bouchet made history two years later, becoming the first African American to earn a doctorate degree in the United States. After earning his doctorate in physics, he taught at the School for Colored Youth in Philadelphia for more than 25 years. He died in 1918.
Educational GroundbreakerThat fall, Bouchet entered Yale College (later renamed Yale University) in pursuit of a bachelor’s degree—a remarkable endeavor for the time, as there were few opportunities for African Americans seeking higher education. After graduating from Yale with his bachelor’s in 1874, Bouchet stayed on for two more years and completed his Ph.D. in physics—making him the first African American to earn a doctorate degree in the United States—in 1876. With this accomplishment, Bouchet joined a select group of academics; only a handful of other people had earned that same degree in the country’s history by this time.Read the Complete Article @ biography.com
In 1915, Carter G. Woodson traveled to Chicago from his home in Washington, D.C. to take part in a national celebration of the 50th anniversary of emancipation. He had earned his bachelor’s and master’s degree at the University of Chicago, and still had many friends there. As he joined the thousands of Black Americans overflowing from the Coliseum, which housed exhibits highlighting African American achievements since the abolition of slavery, Woodson was inspired to do more in the spirit of celebrating Black history and heritage. Before he left Chicago, he helped found the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History (ASNLH). A year later, Woodson singlehandedly launched the Journal of Negro History, in which he and other researchers brought attention to the achievements of Black Americans.
The observance of Martin Luther King’s birthday on the third Monday in January is the only federal holiday designated as a national day of service to encourage all Americans to volunteer to improve their communities. Our communities and how we interact with them are changing – family and social lives are physically distanced, offices sprout in kitchens, worship moves online. What remains is our ability to improve the lives of those around us. That impact on our communities is at the core of our mission and in the hearts of every member of the Argonne community.
When Dr. King addressed the Hungry Club Forum on May 10, 1967, three years after being awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for employing nonviolent civil disobedience to advance racial equality he asked not if we have the resources or skills to tackle humanity’s great challenges but whether we as a nation would decide to initiate the action to do so.
On this day of celebration and service, please live in the Argonne core value of impact as you choose to think creatively, pursue innovative ideas, and deliver excellence to positively change our community, nation, and world in honor of Dr. King’s life and legacy. Do it, as he charged the crowd that evening in Atlanta, not because it is safe or popular, but “because it is right.”
In proud support of the University of Chicago, AAA ERG invites you to attend the 31st Annual Martin Luther King Jr. celebration! This event is open to the public. Register here: https://mlk.uchicago.edu/attend to attend the virtual event.
Keynote Speaker: Isabel Wilkerson
Isabel Wilkerson, winner of the Pulitzer Prize and the National Humanities Medal, has become a leading figure in narrative nonfiction, an interpreter of the human condition, and an impassioned voice for demonstrating how history can help us understand ourselves, our country, and our current era of upheaval.