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The Graduate School is among the nation’s largest producers of African-American students who complete doctorates in science, technology, engineering, and physical sciences.


Howard University was established in 1867 – the same year that the University offered its first master’s degree.  In 1934, the Graduate School was formally established; and in 1976, the school was reorganized into its current structure with divisions in the arts and humanities, biological and life sciences, engineering and physical sciences, and social sciences. The school awarded its first doctorate degree in 1958 in the field of chemistry. Today, the school offers 28 master’s and 27 doctoral programs.

Howard University is a comprehensive, research intensive and historically black private university located in Washington, D.C. The University’s mission is to “attract and sustain a cadre of faculty who are, through their teaching, research and service, committed to the development of distinguished, historically aware, and compassionate graduates and to the discovery of solutions to human problems in the United States and throughout the world. With an abiding interest in both domestic and international affairs, the University is committed to continuing to produce leaders for America and the global community.”

In 2014, the Graduate School celebrated 58 years of awarding the Ph.D. degree. Since awarding its first Ph.D. degree, the school has risen to its status as the nation’s number one on-campus producer of African-American doctoral recipients, among a highly diverse group of doctoral recipients.  In 2014, the Graduate School awarded 105 doctoral degrees, the highest number in the history of the university.

The school consistently produces the nation’s largest number of on-campus African-American doctoral recipients, producing 100 or more doctoral degree recipients annually.  Howard also produces the nation’s largest grouping of African-American baccalaureate students in the STEM programs who go on to obtain the Ph.D. degree.  The Graduate School is also among the nation’s largest producers of African-American students who complete doctorates in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. Additionally, Howard continues to be the nation’s top ranked university in producing African American doctorates in the applied and social sciences.

The school has earned a national reputation for its leadership role in preparing future faculty who will help replenish and ensure diversity among the nation’s professoriate.  In recent years, U.S. News and World Report has named Howard as one of the nation’s great schools at great prices, and one of the Best National Universities. Several departments, including the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders, rank among the top in their disciplines nationally. Graduate School faculty consistently receive top honors nationally. For example, Professor Winston Anderson was named by President Barack Obama as one of nine individuals and eight organizations who were recipients of the Presidential Award for Excellence in Science, Mathematics, and Engineering Mentoring. 

Recently, the National Science Foundation (NSF) awarded a five-year $20 million grant to establish a Science and Technology Center (STC) to a team of faculty from Howard University, Harvard University, MIT, Museum of Science (MOS)-Boston and the Center’s College Network. The Center for Integrated Quantum Materials (CIQM) is positioned to transform photonics from 3D structures to 2D atomic layers and communicate the impact of the technology to the public. CIQM activities will facilitate collaborations across diverse disciplines and institutions and encourage students to pursue careers in science and engineering.






Years of Scholarship

From radio technology to quantum materials


The future of electronics via new quantum materials. Dr. Harris demonstrates prototypes of technology from the transistor radio to the iPod.