RIT’s Minett Professorship-Celebrating 30 Years of Connections | September 2021
Newsletter September 2021
RIT’s Minett Professorship-Celebrating 30 Years of Connections
The late Wyoma Best was appointed as the first Minett Professor at Rochester Institute of Technology in 1991. Best was always a trailblazer. She was the first Black woman to serve on the Rochester City School Board. In the 1970’s she joined WHEC-TV as the first Black woman to work as a reporter in local TV news and was later named a vice president with the Rochester Metro Chamber of Commerce.
The Minett Professorship is celebrating its 30th anniversary this academic year. It is named after Frederick Minett, an RIT benefactor who owned a tool and die company in downtown Rochester during the 1920s. He would often employ students from RIT, then called the Mechanics Institute. When Minett died in 1971, he left an endowment of over $5 million to RIT to support career education efforts.
The Minett Professorship brings distinguished Rochester-area multicultural professionals to the RIT campus to share their expertise with students, faculty and staff for one academic year. With Best leading the way, many others from business executives and educators to judges and journalists- even a former Mayor- have served as Minett Professors.
This year esteemed Native American storyteller Perry Ground was appointed to the position.