Student Researcher Learns More About the First Black Graduate of Pomona College

In 1904, Winston M.C. Dickson became the first African American graduate of Pomona College in Claremont, California. Not much was known about Dickson until Saahil Desai, a current senior at the college, undertook research for a class project. He later published his findings on the website Medium.

Desai conducted research in the Claremont Colleges Library, through, and in old newspapers in California and in Texas, where Dickson was one of the earliest Black attorneys.

Desai said that “it’s thoroughly important to remember the history of our college, and of a certain individual who’s overcome so much to get here, and after graduating has accomplished so much, and had a fulfilling life.”


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