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Celebrating Black History Month

By Jessica Sinn

Earl Campbell and Ricky Williams on the UT football feild

Every February, we celebrate Black History Month to honor and recognize the contributions of African Americans to U.S. history. During this month of national reflection, we bring you several stories and educational offerings that highlight the many Black leaders and pioneers who have shaped our university and our nation. 


Lessons in Black History

History of the Black Experience

Thumbnail image for link to story: "Answering the Call"

Last summer, the DDCE received an outpouring of requests from colleagues in need of educational materials and guidance on how to better support the university’s Black community. To answer the growing demand for education and advocacy training, Leonard Moore, the George Littlefield Professor of American History and former vice president of diversity and community engagement, offered his History of the Black Experience course online at no cost throughout the months of July and August. The online classes are available on our YouTube channel.


Honoring Our Precursors

Willie C. Jordan stands with a group of UT Precursors

Top Houston architect Willie C. Jordan Jr. (pictured here on the left) shares academic journey during UT’s early days of integration in this DDCE web story.

Hidden in Plain Sight

Gloria Akkinibosun, a McCombs School of Business/African and African Diaspora Studies junior and member of the Fearless Leadership Institute, honored UT Precursor Peggy Drake Holland in a spoken word performance at this year’s Heman Sweatt Symposium on Civil Rights. Read the full spoken-word piece. 

A Watershed Moment in UT History

image of precursor court case
Precursor Sherryl Griffin Bozeman reflects on the lawsuit known as the “Dormitory Desegregation Case” that led to the integration of UT Austin dorms. Read her full editorial on our Precursors website.


In the Books

John S. Chase-The Chase Residence

Chase Residence book cover
Go to this Houston Chronicle story to read about the forthcoming book “John S. Chase: The Chase Residence,” authored by School of Architecture Professor David Heymann. Within the coming months, we will be posting updates on our news site about the Center for Community Engagement’s new home within the historic East Austin building designed by Chase, the first African American to attend the university’s School of Architecture.

The Sword and the Shield

Visit our Access magazine website to read an interview with Peniel Joseph, author of “The Sword and the Shield: The Revolutionary Lives of Malcolm X and Martin Luther King Jr.”

As We Saw It

as we saw it book cover
“As We Saw It”
is a collection of stories, co-edited by Division of Diversity and Community Engagement staff and faculty, gives readers a glimpse into the lives of the first Black undergraduate students to enroll at the university. Told against the backdrop of the Jim Crow South, this narrative is inextricably linked to current conversations about race, identity, access and equality in higher education.


Texas Legends

Changing the Game

image of football player

Read about C.R. Roberts, one of the first Black college athletes to take the field against the all-white Texas team, on our Access magazine website.
Photo caption: USC fullback C.R. Roberts broke a school record for yardage in a single game in the Trojans’ 1956 bout against the Longhorns. Photo courtesy of University of Southern California Athletics

Taking the Field

Image courtesy of Texas Athletics

The field at Darrel K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium is now  known as Campbell-Williams Field in Honor of two of the greatest running backs in Texas history, Ricky Williams (1995-98) and Earl Campbell (1974-77). This is one of several changes that have been made to the UT Austin campus in response to the list of “8 Demands for Transformative Change” developed by a coalition of students, faculty, alumni and staff. Visit the Texas Sports website to watch a conversation with Campbell and Williams. Image courtesy of Texas Athletics.