Virginia Tech Graduate Becomes First Black Female Nanoscientist In Virginia

The university uses the opportunity to increase diversity within its STEM programs.

22-year-old Richmond native Ginai Seabron makes history after graduating with a degree in Nanoscience from Virginia Tech. The first African-American female to do so in the state of Virginia, Seabron is setting a precedent not only in her state but the STEM field as well.

Like many of us who attended a PWI (predominately white institution), there was alway that sigh of relief when another black person walked into class. Seabron found that more often than not, she was the only person of color in her classes. With over 27,000 students enrolled for the 2017-2018 school year, Virginia Tech’s demographics reveal that over 17,000 students are white while 1,079 are African-American. Not uncommon, these numbers would explain why Seabron felt she was the only woman of color pursuing a degree in nanoscience.

Women of color in STEM is not unheard of. The groundbreaking film Hidden Figures showed the world that black women have been present, just underrepresented. With only two schools in Virginia offering a nanoscience program, Seabron was appalled to learn that she was the first to receive a degree in the field.

 “We talked to the department head and he looked it up and confirmed it,” said Seabron, a Richmond Community High grad.

Pictures of Seabron went viral on social media upon her graduation this past May. Virginia Tech even shared in her congratulations hoping this would attract more diversity to its STEM programs. Seabron plans to intern at her Alma Mater for a year before returning to school for a second degree.



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