Dr. Archie Taylor named as Diverse: Issues in Higher Education 2020 Emerging Scholar

One of Alcorn State University’s biology assistant professors is being recognized for his commitment to leading and equipping science students for a promising future.

Archie Taylor, who earned a bachelor’s degree in biology/pre-medicine from Alcorn in 2008, is one of 15 distinguished educators from across the country to be named as a Diverse: Issues in Higher Education 2020 Emerging Scholar. The scholars are selected based on several factors, including teaching, community service, scholarly awards, honors, and academic accomplishments.

Because of the push for more diversity in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) careers, Taylor appreciates his acknowledgment as an emerging scholar because it allows him to be an example to young minorities aspiring to pursue STEM careers.

“It is truly an honor and blessing,” said Taylor. “Most importantly, this honor allows me to expose underrepresented populations to other exciting STEM-related areas. I hope to show the students that their dreams and aspirations are valid. In many of the STEM-related fields, minorities are highly underrepresented. Despite this fact, I hope to show students that becoming a doctor, scientist, engineer, chemist, biologist, pharmacist, etc. is possible if they believe. To be recognized as an emerging scholar highlights how important diversity is in science. I hope to continue to use this platform to serve as a beacon of light for other students.”

Teaching at Alcorn has helped Taylor rise to a level worthy of such an award. He credits his alma mater for giving him the chance to teach and his daily interactions with his students as the driving forces behind his success.

“Alcorn has played an important role in my growth. The students have truly reminded me of why I chose to go into science. The experience working and learning with them challenges me to climb higher and reach further to bring those along with me. At Alcorn, I can meet the needs of the students where they are. I am always up for the challenge to be the best advocate for students. I could not imagine doing science at no place other than Alcorn.”

Taylor hopes to establish laboratories across the state of Mississippi that caters to bringing awareness to citizens about various diseases and their treatments.

“My short-term goal is to establish a research center at Alcorn that takes an interdisciplinary approach to understanding diseases and preventive measures. I started a laboratory with my colleague, Dr. Debarshi Roy, where we plan to address health disparity related biomedical research in cancer genomics. In this capacity, I hope to establish research centers throughout Mississippi to pay homage to Henrietta Lacks, whom we owe most of our advances in medicine, drugs, diseases, and biomedical research.”

To read more about Taylor and see his feature, visit Diverse: Issues in Higher Education website.