AT&T announced a $10,000 contribution to Dillard University to support women of color in optics, physics and science, technology, engineering and math  (STEM) programs. The program will add to the available resources for girls and young women interested in STEM careers and help to orient them toward STEM fields early on in their studies. Dillard University has a long-standing history of being placed among the top 15 schools graduating African American students in physics. Over 80% of graduates in physics from this school are women.

“There is a lack of gender and race diversity in STEM-related fields of study; therefore, it is imperative that we continue to fund programs that help to increase the number and success of young women of color in STEM fields,” stated State Senator JP Morrell. “The U.S. cannot become a world leader in STEM development without focusing on underrepresented populations as diversity will secure the best talent, and diverse viewpoints create the best problem solving.”

“Without the support of corporate partners like AT&T we would not have the financial resources to fully support and  provide incentives for young women of color to pursue careers in STEM,” said Marc Barnes, vice president for Institutional Advancement at Dillard. “Having the financial means to fully support the success of our current students and graduates in the workforce will eventually make the STEM areas of education for women of color more acceptable to our future students.”

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