The University of Texas at Austin will celebrate the 60th anniversary of The Precursors, the first group of African American undergraduates to integrate the Forty Acres in 1956. Events are coordinated by the Division of Diversity and Community Engagement, The Precursors, and the Texas Exes Black Alumni Network.
WHEN: Sept 8-11. Official UT Austin speaker event will be on Friday, Sept. 9, 3-5 p.m.
WHERE: Events will take place at various locations on and off campus.
WHO MAY ATTEND: Thursday, Sept. 8 panel discussion and Friday, Sept. 9 Official UT speaker event are free and open to the public.
BACKGROUND: In 1956, the first African American undergraduates attended The University of Texas at Austin. Since that watershed year, thousands of African American students have attended this flagship institution.
“As we celebrate this milestone in the history of Texas’ premiere university, we are privileged to honor those who courageously paved the way for the advancement of civil rights on the Forty Acres and throughout the United States,” said Gregory J. Vincent, vice president of diversity and community engagement at The University of Texas at Austin.
“We stand on the shoulders of the courageous men and women who were among the first African American students to enroll at The University of Texas at Austin,” said Stephanie Johnson, Black Alumni Network president. “Through their grace, dignity and determination, The Precursors showed the world they belonged on the Forty Acres. We look forward to honoring them and reconnecting with many other fellow Longhorns—former classmates and friends—during homecoming,”
SCHEDULE OF EVENTS:
Thursday, Sept. 8, 7 p.m., Etter-Harbin Alumni Center, 2110 San Jacinto Blvd
Members of The Precursors, current UT students and alumni will discuss their experiences as African Americans on campus at a panel discussion titled “Then and Now.”
Friday, Sept. 9, 3-5 p.m., LBJ Auditorium, 2313 Red River St.
The University of Texas at Austin honors The Precursors at an event titled “Facing the Winds of Change with Dignity, Courage and Wisdom.” The event will feature remarks by President Greg L. Fenves, Chancellor William McRaven, and State Sen Rodney Ellis. Members of The Precursors will also discuss their experiences on campus at a panel discussion. For more about The Precursors visit As We Saw It, a website that chronicles UT Austin’s story of integration.
LIVE STEAM at 3 p.m.: livestream.com/utblackalumni/events/6278804
Friday, Sept. 9, 7:30 p.m., Crowne Plaza Hotel, 6121 North Interstate Highway 35
The Black Alumni Network will continue the celebration honoring the 1956 undergraduates.
LIVE STREAM at 6:30 p.m.: utblackalumni/events/6278158
Saturday, Sept. 10, 6 p.m., Darryl K. Royal Memorial Stadium, 405 E 23rd St.
The Precursors and honorary chair of the celebration, Earl Campbell, will take part in the coin toss and be recognized during the Texas v. UTEP game.
Join the online conversation: #Blackonthe40Acres