Educators in Georgia and Maryland earn top 2006 Mentoring Awards from AAAS

SAN FRANCISCO -- A professor of mathematics at the University of Maryland and the head of the school of electrical and computer engineering at the Georgia Institute of Technology and have been honored by the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) for their diligent efforts to help underrepresented students earn doctoral degrees in the sciences.

Raymond L. Johnson, a professor of mathematics at the University of Maryland, College Park, received the prestigious 2006 AAAS Mentor Award for Lifetime Achievement. He has mentored 23 students 22 of them African Americans who have received Ph.D. degrees in mathematics. Eight of the African Americans are women.

Gary S, May, professor and chair of the Steve W. Chaddick School of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Georgia Tech, received the 2006 AAAS Mentor Award. He has mentored 33 students most of them African Americans who have received doctoral degrees in electrical and computer engineering. Ten of them are women.

2006 AAAS Mentor Award for Lifetime Achievement

Nearly 40 years ago, Raymond Johnson became the first African American to earn a Ph.D. degree in mathematics from Rice University in Houston. He had entered the school as a research assistant because Rice's charter barred African Americans from graduate study, a restriction the school lifted a year after Johnson's arrival. Johnson, who received his Ph.D. in 1969, became the first African-American professor at the University of Maryland. He has devoted his career there to increasing the participation in the mathematical sciences by African Americans.

In nominating Johnson for the AAAS award, Patrick Fitzpatrick the chair of the mathematics department at Maryland noted that "the institutional success of our department in educating underrepresented minorities has been based on the leadership of Ray Johnson." Johnson also has been an influential voice nationally in efforts to fost

Contact: Lonnie Shekhtman
American Association for the Advancement of Science

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