History was recently made at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point in New York when 32 Black women graduated from the illustrious school.
The 2019 graduating class on Friday marked the largest number of African-American women to earn degrees.
“My hope when young black girls see these photos is that they understand that regardless of what life presents you, you have the ability and fortitude to be a force to be reckoned with,” Cadet Tiffany Welch-Baker, one of the graduates, told Because of Them We Can.
Baker added that she initially questioned her decision to leave active duty and attend West Point, but quickly came around after meeting “so many cadets that looked like me and that offered me some comfort.”
“I have been fortunate to have my sisters in arms,” she said. “We have been fortunate to have each other.”
West Point, founded in 1802, did not graduate its first Black cadet until 1877. It did not graduate a Black cadet in the 20th century until Benjamin O. Davis in 1936. The first Black Corps of Cadets captain was not named until 1979.
This article originally appeared in the Washington Informer.