Woman is first African American to earn PhD in chemistry at UT-Arlington

A notable milestone will take place this week at the University of Texas at Arlington.

A woman is set to become the first-ever African American to graduate with a PhD in chemistry from the university.

Lindsay Davis joked that she wasn’t always passionate about the subject.

"In high school, I wasn’t the best at chemistry. I actually did not like chemistry," she said.

Davis grew up in Oklahoma City and attended science academy summer camps at nearby Langston University, an HBCU. Additionally, she was inspired by her mom, who was a single parent. As a young girl, Davis watched her mom earn a college degree.

Davis earned a bachelor’s in chemistry at Langston in 2015.   

"I was always interested in science I was stronger in biology more than chemistry. I struggled with chemistry for a while, but with the mentorship of my professors at Langston I got stronger in chemistry," she said.

Davis’ dissertation at UTA involved the study of enzymes relating to tuberculosis that will contribute to furthering treatment options for the disease.

"I chose UTA because I knew they were on their way to becoming a tear one research institution," she said.

Davis said she’s looking forward to the big day. 

"It’s very exciting for my family and friends to come and see me across the stage, especially my son who is three," she said.

Davis said she recently accepted a position to teach and continue with her medical research at Langston University. As for the notable milestone she’s about to achieve, she is humbled. 

"It’s one thing to have an accomplishment and to celebrate it, but I’m here to help others," she said. "So I’m using this accomplishment, in this spotlight, at this time to inspire others."

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