Shirley Jackson at MIT, 1973
Shirley Ann Jackson '68, PhD '73 of Washington, D.C. was one of the first black women to earn a Bachelor's degree and the first to earn a PhD from MIT. During her undergraduate and graduate years at the Institute, Jackson advocated for the recruitment and retainment of black students. Her efforts included co-founding the Black Students' Union in 1968 and working with the Administration to advance racial equity at the Institute. Today Jackson serves as the 18th president of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and is a permanent member of the MIT Corporation.