The Snail-Like Progress of Blacks Into Faculty Ranks

A new report from the U.S. Department of Education finds that in 2007 there were 37,862 black faculty members at degree-granting institutions in the United States. Black faculty accounted for 5.4 percent of the total faculty at all degree-granting institutions.

Blacks have made snail-like progress in winning greater faculty positions. More than a quarter-century ago, in 1981, blacks were 4.2 percent of all faculty in higher education. Today, as stated, the figure is 5.4 percent. At this rate of progress it would take nearly a century and a half for the percentage of black faculty in higher education to match the percentage of blacks in the overall American work force.