Beyond Black History Month Event Speakers & Suggestions  Links for Teachers & Kids Books and Shopping History of Blacks BEFORE Slavery Black History Month 2006
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The first Black college graduate was Edward A. Jones, who received a B.A. degree from Amherst College on August 23, 1826.  John B. Russwurm, who is generally considered the first Black college graduate, received an A.B. degree from Bowdoin College on September 6, 1826.

The first Black to receive a Ph.D. degree was Patrick Francis Healy, who passed the final examinations at Louvain in Belgium on July 26, 1865.

The first Black to receive a Ph.D. degree from an American university was Edward A. Bouchet, who was awarded a degree in physics at Yale University in 1876.  Bouchet, the principal of a high school in Galliopolis, Ohio, died in 1918.

The first Black inducted into Phi Beta Kappa was Edward A. Bouchet, who was inducted at Yale University in 1874.

The first Black president of a predominantly White university was Patrick Francis Healy, S.J., who was inaugurated at Georgetown University, the oldest Catholic university in America, on July 31, 1874.

The first Black president of a major, predominantly White university in the 20th century was Clifton R. Wharton Jr., who was named president of Michigan State University on October 17, 1969.  In 1978 Wharton became chancellor of the State University of New York.

The first Black professor at a predominantly White university was Charles L. Reason, who was named pofessor of belles-lettres and French at Central College, McGrawville, New York in 1849.  

The first Black graduate of Harvard University was Richard T. Greer.  In 1873, he was named professor of metaphysics at the University of South Carolina.

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