Celebrating 50 years of African and African-American studies at UB

Class with Nestor Zarragoitia, adjunct professor of Transnational Studies, in a Capen Hall classroom.

Nestor Zarragoitia, adjunct professor of Transnational Studies, teaches students in a Capen Hall classroom. Photographer: Douglas Levere

The Department of Transnational Studies in the College of Arts and Sciences will celebrate five decades of African and African-American studies at UB with a 50th Anniversary Symposium on Feb. 12.

The daylong celebration, which will begin at 9 a.m. in 228 Student Union, North Campus, is open to students, faculty, staff, alumni and members of the community. It will kick off a year of commemoration for the program, with additional events scheduled for the fall.

“UB was a pioneer in black studies in the nation,” says Cecil Foster, professor and chair of transnational studies. “So it is a time of celebrating, and a time of examining and evaluating what the program has become. And, equally, looking to what the program can become in the future.”

Mark Anthony Neal, a UB alumnus (PhD ’96) and chair of the Department of African and African American Studies at Duke University, will present the symposium’s keynote address, “If You Don’t Own the [Servers]”: Curating + Aggregating + Doing Black Studies in the Digital Era.” Founding director of the Center for Arts, Digital Culture and Entrepreneurship at Duke, Neal also co-directs the Duke Council on Race and Ethnicity, and is the author of several books.

The day will continue with a discussion of the history of African-American studies at UB, guest speakers and panels comprised of faculty, staff, students and alumni. A reception with this year’s Camille Arnold Scholarship awardees will close the symposium.

For specific event information, visit the UB event calendar or contact the department at tnsdept@buffalo.edu.