Dr. Milton L Cofield STEM Scholarship

Honoring the legacy of Dr. Milton L. Cofield, Natchitoches native, Southern University graduate, professor, and notable scientist and scholar. This scholarship is designed to support the academic ambitions of students pursuing careers in the fields of science, technology, engineering or math (STEM).

About Dr. Milton L. Cofield 

Cofield graduated from Southern University in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, with a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemistry, magna cum laude, in 1973 where he continued to excel and achieve. He attended graduate school at the University of Illinois and received his Ph.D. in Physical Chemistry in 1979. Upon graduation, Dr. Cofield moved to Rochester, New York where he began his career as a physical scientist in the research laboratories of the Eastman Kodak Company in 1979.  In 1989, Dr. Cofield was awarded the M.B.A. degree in Finance from the University of Pennsylvania Wharton School and upon graduation was appointed assistant to the President of SUNY College at Brockport, New York, and also served as Executive Director of the Rochester Educational Opportunity Center. In 1996, Dr. Cofield was named James E. McGhee Distinguished Professor at the Rochester Institute of Technology, and in 2000, he was appointed Fulbright Senior Scholar in the Graduate Institute of Technology and Innovation Management at National Chengchi University in Taipei, Taiwan, and also a Fulbright American Studies Professor at De LaSalle University at Manila, Philippines.

Upon departure from RIT, Dr. Cofield became a Distinguished Teaching Professor and the executive director of the Undergraduate Business Administration program at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, PA.  He was the first African American to hold this distinguished position in the history of the University. 

Due to his commitment to scholarship and community leadership, Dr. Cofield was appointed to the New York State Board of Regents for ten years where he was elected by his colleagues to the position of Vice-Chancellor.  Cofield was also among the first African Americans to be appointed as a member of the Board of Governors for the New York Academy of Sciences.  

For the last four years, Dr. Cofield served as Distinguished Service Professor of Business Management at Carnegie Mellon University Qatar. Milton was very proud of his students who recently honored him with an award that quotes the author Judy Blume and reads, “Our fingerprints never fade from the lives we touch.”  He was also named as one of the favorite professors at Carnegie Mellon University by Bloomberg. 

While we mourn this loss, we celebrate his many contributions as a scholar, activist, professor, government official, and community leader championing educational opportunity for all.