Powerful testimonio /testimony by Dr. Alvaro Huerta that sheds light on the problem of the under-representation of mathematics professors at our nations colleges and universities from a personal vantage point.
As a backdrop, Dr. Huerta notes the following abysmal figures:
"Based on NFS’s 2016 calendar year, out of 1,827 earned doctorates in mathematics and statistics, Hispanics or Latinos held only 63 doctorates, or 3 percent. In comparison, whites held 673 doctorates, or 37 percent. Given that Latinas/os, as the largest racialized groups in nation, represented an estimated 57.5 million residents in 2016, or about 18 percent of the U.S. population, 3 percent represents a minuscule and unacceptable figure."
One can't help but wonder what did not happen because of the discrimination that he and his friend, Martha, faced. Both were subject not only to exceedingly low expectations, but were actually robbed of a first-place, mathematics victory that they had earned.
This cannot be left to chance. We must collectively work to increase the numbers of Mexican Americans and other minoritized children of color in STEM. To get there, we must create pathways to STEM careers and also continue offering and teaching against the kind of racism that creates mindsets that fail to teach equitably and in so doing, reduces possibilities for students of color.