As campus policies are put into motion to continue preventing the spread of COVID-19, the Black Cultural Center (BCC) is operating at limited capacity on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday at 11 am - 4 pm. Please call (801-213-1441) or email (bcc@utah.edu) the BCC prior to your visit in order to verify there is space to maintain physical distancing. Outside of these times, the BCC’s staff are available remotely and can be met through virtual meetings scheduled on Skype for Business or Cranium Cafe.

Using a Pan-African lens, the Black Cultural Center seeks to holistically enrich, support, and advocate for faculty, staff, and students through Black centered research, culturally affirming educational initiatives, and service.

The Black Cultural Center will enact this mission through intentional programmatic learning outcomes, envisioned to build a sense of belonging and community at the U, with the goal of increasing the recruitment and retention of Black faculty, staff, and students. Through research, education, and service this center will promote and explore race/racism, social justice, cross disciplines, community connections, centering the black voice, leadership, and the larger African diasporic community.

Groups & Associations

The African Student Association (TASA)

The African Student Association mission at the University of Utah is to serve our community, the minorities within the society and create awareness of our unique and beautiful African cultures within the different countries in the continent of Africa.

Black Student Union (BSU)

The Mission of BSU is to foster a sense of community among all students of the African Diaspora at the University of Utah. Our goal is to simulate the intellectual, political, cultural, and social growth of all Utah students. We seek to educate ourselves and the larger Utah community, in hopes that awareness will spark action and ignite change in our communities. In addition, the Black Student Union shall serve as a resource to all other groups on campus, no matter sex, creed, age, and sexual identity.

Black Graduate Student Association (BGSA)

The Black Graduate Student Association, (BGSA) U of U was founded in 2009 to support the Black graduate and professional students of the University of Utah.

Black Faculty & Staff Association (BFSA)

The Black Faculty and Staff Association (BFSA) is dedicated to promoting the full inclusion of Black faculty, staff, and students at the University of Utah. Our mission is to advocate progress through the promotion of critical dialogue, networking, recruitment and retention of Black individuals, professional development, mentoring, and cultural programs that emphasize the traditions of the African-American community.

Muslim Students Association (MSA)

The Muslim Students Association at the University of Utah is a group of Muslim Students working for the sake of God, to achieve unity, justice and God’s pleasure. We are an affiliate of MSA National, the first Islamic organization in North America, established in 1963 for the same goals. There are approximately 150 members and increasing yearly! The MSA is open to all U students to join and participate!

Black Alumni Community

The Black Alumni Community works to serve as a holistic resource, to foster a sense of community, and promote ethnic pride. They pledge to increase cultural unity and leadership opportunities for black students and alumni.

Programs & Initiatives

African American Doctoral Studies Initiative

The African American Doctoral Scholars Initiative provides a scholarly community and educational services for African American doctoral students at the University of Utah. These competitive scholarships are awarded annually to full-time African American doctoral students who demonstrate significant potential for leadership, scholarship, and active engagement in their respective disciplines and who also demonstrate a commitment to understanding Black life, history, and culture in the United States. The Initiative prepares African American doctoral students for academic, industry, and entrepreneurial careers through faculty mentoring, advising and professional development.

Principal Investigator: Paula Smith, Ph.D.

Welcome Black

Welcome Black orients new Black students, staff, and faculty to a Black/African-American community at the University of Utah. This event connects individuals to people, resources, and support services in one place. The three major Black organizations: the Black Student Union, the Black Graduate Student Association, and the Black Faculty & Staff Association introduce their leadership to the community so that individuals recognize names and faces they can go to for support. The goal for the future is that this event will expand to include a component for student support services to be available to share resources, to incorporate the African organizations on campus, and welcome new students and families prior to classes beginning.

Black History Month

Black History Month has historically been a time of the year that has been organized and celebrated in silos at the University of Utah. If Black Lives truly matter, it is imperative that this celebration and acknowledgment of Blacks and individuals of African descent be institutionalized. We envision the Director of the Black Cultural Center facilitating the institutionalization of this month, collaborate with entities that provide programming during Black History Month throughout campus and work with the Office for Equity & Diversity to market these events. The Black Student Union will continue to decorate the display case in the Union as they have traditionally done. Furthermore, all Black organizations on campus will continue to contribute to educational, professional development, and socio-cultural programming that takes place during Black History Month, but this removes the large workload that the Black Student Union has held the last few years.

We’d love to hear about what you, your department, your college is doing for Black History Month (BHM) at the University of Utah! Please submit your event and we’ll add it to our Black History Month calendar!

Black Affair/Graduation Celebration

Black Affair was a traditional event that was organized at the University of Utah to unite, gather and recognize excellence within the Black community. In spring 2018, the Black Student Union brought this event back to the university and expanded the scope to incorporate the community. This event is held at the end of the year to recognize the work of BSU, honor three individuals for their leadership, and to recognize Black graduates; undergraduate, graduate and professional students. This is a time to recognize the hard work that the Black community has put forth to make progress and to acknowledge the scholarship from Black students at the University of Utah.

Black Faculty + Staff Awards

In honoring Black faculty and staff for their work on campus and in the community, the Black Cultural Center hosts its annual Black Faculty + Staff Awards to showcase, award and promote examples of excellence, amazing charges and upholding the four university goals.

Black Professional Workshops

Black professional workshop for staff is a once a semester workshop with several topics (finance, resume building, professional development) in hopes of developing Black faculty and staff here at the University.

George Floyd Memorial Fund

The George Floyd Memorial Fund was established (2020) in response to a national call for action after the death of George Floyd. With your support, this fund will directly support students and programs committed to advancing the interest of the next generation of aspiring Black leaders such as the Black Student Union, Black Graduate Student Association, African Student Association, National Society of Black Engineers and others.

K.I.N.G.S.

The K.I.N.G.S. (Knowledgeable Intuitive Noble Gentlemen Succeeding) Initiative is an empowerment program designed to address the needs of undergraduate men of color. The Initiative hopes to encourage participants to exceed personally and professionally while gaining valuable leadership skills through community work, career development, and social events.

L.O.V.E.

L.O.V.E (Living Our Varied Experiences) is a monthly research, discussion, community series on Black Womxn topics. Faculty, staff, student, and community are welcome.

Man-Not Series

Join the Black Cultural Center on the first Tuesday of every month during the fall and spring semesters on topics pertaining to those that identify as Black Men. Faculty, staff, student, and community are welcome.

Q.U.E.E.N.

The Q.U.E.E.N. (Quintessentially Unifying Everyone’s Everlasting Nobleness) Initiative is committed to providing a sense of community dedicated to providing support and empowerment to one another. Serving all undergraduate, self-identified Q.U.E.E.N. students, the Initiative promises to create an inclusive environment with a strong sense of belonging. Through bi-weekly meetings at the BCC, the Q.U.E.E.N. Initiative will inspire members to achieve greatness and celebrate milestones and successes.

Spotlight Series

Spotlight Series is a monthly series in which the Black Cultural Center brings an audience to faculty, staff and students who have been working on a research here at the University. By providing a spotlight we can showcase diverse works of Black people at the U.

Where is Black in the Rainbow? Amplifying Black Queer Voices in LGBTQ+ Spaces

“Where is Black in the Rainbow?” is a monthly research, discussion, community series on Black queer topics. Faculty, staff, student, and community are welcome.

Community Resources

Utah Black Chamber of Commerce

The mission of the Utah Black Chamber of Commerce is to be the key resource for African American and other minority as well as veterans and women-owned small businesses throughout the State of Utah and nationwide. Among other things, they facilitate opportunities, develop effective networking methods and share key information for African-American and other minority-owned businesses. They serve as a liaison between our small business community and the State, and federal government and business community at large. The Utah Black Chamber of Commerce is the premier organization that advocates for the economic needs of all the above mentioned classified businesses. They believe through developing the necessary partnerships and alliances with government agencies and large corporations, the UBCC will continue to empower and help strengthen the foundation of minority-owned businesses while providing various educational platforms to increase their growth.

NAACP Salt Lake Branch

NAACP Salt Lake Branch is a civil rights organization based in Salt Lake City, Utah. They focus on civil rights issues surrounding discrimination against United States citizens while providing college and youth scholarships that help members avoid the traps of discriminatory loans and lending practices.

Madina Masjid of Salt Lake City

The Madina Masjid is a non-profit religious organization devoted to the teaching of the Islamic religion based on the Shafi Madhab and Ahlu-Sunnah wal-Jamacah.

Calvary Baptist Church

Calvary Baptist Church is a diverse congregation with members from all over the Wasatch Front Community. Their ministries have been an active part of the downtown Salt Lake Community since 1892.

Our Team

Meligha Garfield

Director of the Black Cultural Center
Bldg 603
801-213-1441
Meligha.Garfield@utah.edu

Black Cultural Center

Using a Pan-African lens, the Black Cultural Center seeks to holistically enrich, support, and advocate for faculty, staff, and students through Black centered research, culturally affirming educational initiatives, and service.