Dr. Elayne Arrington

Personal

Prefix: Dr.
First Name: Elayne
Last Name: Arrington

Education

Summary

Elayne Arrington is the first Black female graduate of the School of Engineering at the University of Pittsburgh.

Biography

In her suburban Pittsburgh steel town home, Elayne Arrington was, because of her race, not permitted to be a cheerleader, a drum majorette, or an angel in the Christmas play - all things a young girl might wish to do. When she was valedictorian of her class, it was the first year in the history of the school that the valedictory address was given by the class president and not the valedictorian. As the child of an employee of the steel company, she was awarded a company scholarship to the university of Pittsburgh, only to be informed a few days later that the company did not give scholarships to women.

 

She has written,

First of all I was resentful-I resented the white male who received "my scholarship" as I thought of it. I had classes with him at the university and often heard him boast about the great scholarship he had "won." Secondly, I felt compelled to prove that I could do anything that the males could do (often collectively). They were not friendly and I did'nt ask them any questions lest they think I was incapable of doing my own work.

 

At the University of Pittsburg Elayne Arrington was in Pi Tau Sigma Honorary, Mechanical Engineering Fraternity), Quax (Women's Honorary Science Sorority). She earned her B.S. in Aeronautical Engineering from the University of Pittsburgh (1961) as the first Black female graduate of the Engineering School. After graduation from the University of Pittsburgh she worked from 1962 to 1970 as an aerospace engineer at Wright-Patterson Airforce Base. In 1968 she earned a M.S. in Mathematics from the University of Dayton, and a 1974 Ph.D. in mathematics from the University of Cincinnati - The P-Frattini-Subgroup of a Finite-Group , advisor Donald Parker.

Academic Appointments: 1974 - 1983 Assistant Professor, Department of Mathematics and Statistics, University of Pittsburgh; 1983 - 1996 Lecturer Department of Mathematics and Statistics, University of Pittsburgh; 1996 - Present Senior Lecturer Department of Mathematics and Statistics, University of Pittsburgh.

PuzzlePlay Project: For four years I have assisted in leading groups of student interns and volunteers into local schools to conduct "puzzle play periods" in the classroom on a regular basis for grades K through 5.