Monifa Phillips Is The First Black Woman To Earn A Ph.D. In Physics From University Of Glasgow In The School's 568-Year History
Congratulations are most certainly in order.
Congratulations are in order for Dr. Monifa Phillips: the first Black woman to earn a doctorate in physics from the University of Glasgow.
An anomaly in her field, Phillips said she carved space for herself in the white, male-dominated arena of physics. According to the National Science Foundation, only 5.4% of Ph.D. recipients in STEM fields are Black.
This week I was the very first black woman to graduate from the Uni of Glasgow with a PhD in Physics.— Monifa Phillips, PhD (@monifa_monifa) June 30, 2019'
I'm a proud Black British woman from LDN. I made space for myself in a predominantly white, male field. It was hard, but with the support of my family & my community, I did it. pic.twitter.com/12YYOiJq0c
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Before even stepping into the STEM workforce, the odds for Black and brown students in the field are exacerbated by high tuition costs, racial bias and limited representation. In a shocking 2017 report from The Atlantic, not one Black student received a doctoral degree in STEM’s dozens of fields.
Throughout her doctoral career, Phillips has shared her experiences with explicit racism as often being the only Black woman in her professional space.
Luckily, in the career path I've chosen, I can actually look at the 'our people' page and see whether or not they hire black people or POC. Otherwise I have to ask, "DO YOU HIRE BLACK AND BROWN PEOPLE? FOR THERE IS NO EVIDENCE." and see how they respond.— Monifa Phillips, PhD (@monifa_monifa) May 24, 2019'
Too awks to ask? https://t.co/mKB4Tdiu5o
I've been told the same myself, I've been told "black people are just not good at science" for instance, "they are just better at music"— Monifa Phillips, PhD (@monifa_monifa) May 20, 2019'
Professor Muffy Calder, head of the University of Glasgow's College of Science and Engineering, spoke with Teen Vogue and extended congratulations to Phillips’ on her major accomplishment.
“Congratulations to Monifa Phillips on becoming the first black woman to earn a PhD from the University’s School of Physics in Materials and Condensed Matter Physics," the educator said. "We wish Dr. Phillips the best of luck in her future career!”
Phillips is now a trainee patent attorney within the electronics and engineering team at Veneer Shipley, an intellectual property firm in Europe.