ASU celebrates Black History Month

ASU celebrates Black History Month

Arizona State University announces its first university-wide calendar for Black History Month. The university will celebrate Black History Month throughout February with a variety of speakers and performances.

This year, all four ASU campuses have contributed three to four signature events to a master calendar to celebrate the month while unifying the celebration and showcasing each location. The four campuses – Tempe, Polytechnic, West and Downtown – will still host an additional variety of events in addition to the master calendar of events.

The conversational theme this year is Exploring the African Influence Throughout the Americas.

“Our hope is to spark the conversations of how, through the African diaspora, the influence of African culture is present in the history, art, music and culture of countries across the Americas, and how that influence is seen through the intersecting identities amongst our students today,” says Emeka Ikegwuonu, chair of the Black History Month Planning Committee.

ASU is continuing its tradition in celebrating Black History Month through its academic schools and various centers. We invite you to join us for events honoring the movements, traditions and legacies of peoples of the African diaspora. Black History Month programming at ASU is developed by the Black History Month Planning Committee.

Black History Month traces its origins to the first Negro History Week in February 1926, which was selected because it included the birthdays of Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass, two key figures in the history of African Americans. It was expanded from a week to a month in 1976 by a message from U.S. President Gerald Ford.

The kickoff to the month will take place on Jan. 23 during the MLK Rally at the Memorial Union North Stage on the Tempe campus. 

The following are the university-wide signature events:

Downtown Phoenix campus

Film Screening: "The Abolitionists, Sponsored by Student Engagement and Center for the Study of Race & Democracy," 7 p.m., Feb. 10, Student Center at Post Office, brought to you by the Center for the Study of Race & Democracy

"The Drug Enforcement Agency: Arizona and the Human Factor," 5-9 p.m., Feb 13, Walter Cronkite Building, room 128, brought to you by Project Humanities and Humanity 101

Soul Train Dance, 7-10 p.m., Feb. 25, Student Center at the Post Office

West campus

Opening reception, 6 p.m., Feb. 3, ArtSpace West Gallery

Gumbo Challenge, 6 p.m., Feb. 8, the home of Dr. Duku Anokye (for more information, email

“The Submission,” 7:30 p.m., Feb. 20-21, Second Stage West,

13th Annual Pioneer Award Dinner, 6 p.m., Feb. 22, La Sala Ballrooms

Polytechnic campus

"First Generation: The Documentary," 6-9 p.m., Feb. 3, Peralta 135 

CORA/EOSS Peace Luncheon, 11 a.m.-1 p.m., Feb. 12, Polytechnic Student Union Ballrooms

An Evening of Poetry with Nikki Giovanni, 6:30-8:30 p.m., Feb. 13, Mesa Arts Center (1 E. Main St, Mesa 85201), brought to you by Project Humanities and Humanity 101

Discussion/Panel: "The Things People Say," 3-5 p.m., Feb. 18, Polytechnic Student Union ballrooms

Tempe campus

Black African Coalition Opening Candlelight Vigil, 7 p.m., Feb. 3, Old Main

Guest speaker: Black African Coalition & USG present Talib Kweli, 6-7 p.m., Feb. 4, Memorial Union, Arizona Ballroom

Black African Coalition & MU after Dark Present: Harlem Renaissance Ball (ticket required; email, 8 p.m.-1 a.m., Feb. 7, Memorial Union

Black African Coalition Closing Candlelight Vigil, 7 p.m., Feb. 27, Old Main