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Faculty & Departments Play a Critical Role
Female student smiling
If you’re a faculty member or administrator in a physics or astronomy department, you likely see the problem right in front of you: there are too few African Americans in these disciplines. Despite increases in overall participation, African Americans continue to be met with unwelcoming environments impeding their persistence and potential to thrive in the physical sciences, and in physics and astronomy in particular.

The trends, compiled by AIP Statistics, tell the broader story:
  • The growth in bachelors degrees in the physical sciences among African Americans between 2005 and 2015 has not kept pace with students overall.
  • African Americans in 2020 received only about 4 percent of all physics bachelor’s degrees, roughly the same as in 1994!
  • The number of doctorate degrees in physics earned by African Americans has fallen, from 18 people in 2014-15 (including five women) to just nine (including one woman) in 2018-2019.
To reverse these trends, instructors and administrators must act quickly to dismantle the barriers that inhibit greater African American participation in the physical sciences.
We Can Help You to Change the System
Professor and students in a classroom
TEAM-UP Together’s assistance to departments and faculty includes:
  • Funding for programs and activities that directly support Black students or systemic change efforts.
  • Professional development and training opportunities for faculty and other professionals to better support Black students.
  • A community of practice and engagement opportunities to network and learn from the efforts of others.
how to begin
TEAM-UP Report
Start by reading the groundbreaking 2020 TEAM-UP Report to better understand the roots of the problem. Researched and written by a team of scientists and educators, the report identifies the challenges that perpetuate African Americans’ under-participation in physics and astronomy.
TEAM-UP Together Departmental Programs

Below are two of the ways in which TEAM-UP Together helps to improve educational experiences and outcomes for African American undergraduate majors

Supporting Academic Department Success

In early fall 2023, we launched TEAM-UP Together Expanding eXpertise and Championing Excellence and Leadership (TUT EXCEL) to provide funding for physics and astronomy departments that successfully educate and support African American bachelor’s degree earners through systemic change initiatives. Awards help recipients expand their successful strategies and model their successes for other departments.

Mentor Training for Faculty and Professionals

TEAM-UP Together has partnered with the American Physical Society’s National Mentoring Community to provide mentor training to professionals who wish to mentor TEAM-UP Together Scholars. More information can be found here.

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