Black mathematician's take on being the ‘only one’

Fewer than 1% of doctorates in math are awarded to African Americans. Edray Goins, who earned one of them, found the upper reaches of the math world a challenging place, but he was able to overcome these challenges to succeed.

(Photography: Jared Soares for The New York Times)

Edray Goins, even as amazing as a professor and mathematician he is, faced racial disparities that existed within the math department when he was a student all the way to his professional career.  The lack of diversity in mathematics led to Dr. Goins being undermined in a field he studied and succeeded in like any of his fellow mathematicians. His only difference: He succeeded with a 1% statistic held over him.  As challenging as it be, Dr. Goins inspired Black mathematicians all over the world with his work. Breaking his silence on the loneliness and suppression he felt being black in a profession marked by extraordinary racial imbalance, Dr. Goins became a voice that black students and professionals can resonate with. Learn more about his story.

(Photography: Myles Ashitey)


Click the above image to watch Dr. Goin’s “MEET a Mathematician!” video