Black Degree Attainments in Engineering: Long Way to Go to Reach Parity

ASEEA report from the American Society for Engineering Education shows that the percentage of all bachelor’s degree in engineering earned by African Americans has declined in recent years. In 2005, Black earned 5.3 percent of all bachelor’s degrees awarded in engineering. In 2012, Blacks earned only 4.2 percent of all bachelor’s degrees awarded in the discipline.

Women earned 23.6 percent of all bachelor’s degree in engineering awarded to African Americans. In contrast, women were awarded 17.4 percent of all bachelor’s degrees in engineering earned by White Americans.

During the 2012-13 academic year, North Carolina A&T State University in Greensboro awarded 162 bachelor’s degrees in engineering to African Americans. This was, by a large margin, the most of any university in the country. Georgia Tech was in second place with 109. The only other university with more than 75 engineering bachelor’s degrees was historically Black Morgan State University in Baltimore.

The news is slightly better in graduate degree awards in engineering. From 2005 to 2012, the percentage of all doctoral degrees in engineering awarded to Blacks increased from 3.7 percent to 4.1 percent. For master’s degrees in engineering, the Black percentage of total degree awards increased only slightly from 4.6 percent to 4.7 percent during the period.

The full report, Engineering by the Numbers by Brian L. Yoder, may be downloaded by clicking here.

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