Diola Bagayoko - Distinguished Professor of Physics; Director, Timbuktu Academy

Bagayoko is Professor of Physics and Chancellor s Fellow at Southern University. His accomplishments include: I. Establishment of the Timbuktu Academy, which has a summer program for 100 plus middle and high school students annually and an academic year program for undergraduates, and is nationally recognized as an exceptional program for mentoring minority students in STEM disciplines -- Bagayoko has intensively mentored over 200 students through the Physics Department and the Academy since his arrival at Southern in 1984; II. Demonstrable student outcomes -- among Academy students, two have received the University s highest academic awards, University Grand Marshals; two have received Ph.D.s in Physics and five others are completing their Ph.D.; 10 students have received the M.S. degree in Physics; many of these students are themselves making meaningful contributions to science and society; III. Significant institutional impact and replicability -- started in Physics, the Academy program has expanded to Chemistry and Engineering; while Southern is a predominantly Black institution, students from a variety of backgrounds have been included and succeeded in his program, e.g., Asian, Hispanic, and Caucasian; and IV. Strong testimonials from current graduate students about the influence of Bagayoko personally and the Academy program on their academic and career pursuits.