My friend Ray Mazurek mentioned last week that during his ten-year tenure as an undergraduate and then graduate college student, he only had three female professors and four professors of color. This was in the 70s.
I also spent exactly ten years in college, from 1992 until 2002. So I decided to do a count of my own. Nearly half of my professors were women. Okay, interesting, especially given how different my numbers are compared to Ray's. Then, I broke it down by race. During my ten years as a full-time college student, I had TWO professors of color. And this was mostly in the 90s. And I did my undergraduate work in Detroit, and got my doctorate thirty miles north of the Mexican border. And both classes were in multiculturalism (an African-American woman taught my Af-Am Lit class and a Latino man taught my multi-cultural education seminar)--non-required electives that I sought out.