Robert Robinson Taylor: Building on the Legacy of MIT's First Black Graduate

Friday, September 30, 2022 at 4:00pm to 5:00pm

MIT, 6-120

The Honorable Valerie Jarrett, former Senior Advisor to President Obama, in conversation about the life and legacy of her great-grandfather, MIT’s first Black graduate.

Join us to recognize the impact and legacy of Robert Robinson Taylor (Class of 1892), MIT’s first Black graduate, the first accredited Black Architect in the United States, and a founder of Tuskegee University and its architecture school. This gathering celebrates the loan of Taylor’s MIT diploma to the campus for the inaugural exhibition of the new MIT Museum by Valerie Jarrett, CEO of the Barack Obama Foundation and Taylor’s great-granddaughter, and will include reflections on Taylor’s legacy and new collaborations between Tuskegee and MIT by Professor of the History and Theory of Architecture Mark Jarzombek, as well as Kwesi Daniels, Professor and Head of the Department of Architecture at Tuskegee University.

Dr. Holly Harriel--Tuskegee Class of 1996, MIT Class of 2003, DUSP Lecturer, and MIT CoLab Director--will moderate a discussion with Ms. Jarrett.

NOTE: Individuals who do not have an active MIT identification card or an active e-mail address will have to register for a Tim Ticket, MIT's visitor pass sytem, to gain access to campus facilities. Please follow these instructions to get your Tim Ticket:

For questions about accessibility, please write to Monica Orta at

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