Black History Month

Black History Month is a dedicated time to recognize the contributions of Black peoples to the world. But it is also a time to reflect on the historical and contemporary injustices perpetrated against an entire race and imagine a world that should be different. Black and African American communities continue to struggle in the grips of unjust criminal justice and education systems that continue to diminish the lives and opportunities of their people. These are systems that require re-imagining and re-building, and we all share in that work. 

As an institution dedicated to serving the public good, DU recognizes that our pathway to excellence in science, arts, business, government, and human services has depended, and will continue to depend, on the contributions of our Black and African American peers. 

The national theme for Black History Month theme for 2024 is "African Americans and the Arts in the past present AND FUTURE." 

"African American art is infused with African, Caribbean, and the Black American lived experiences. In the fields of visual and performing arts, literature, fashion, folklore, language, film, music, architecture, culinary and other forms of cultural expression the African American influence has been paramount. African American artists have used art to preserve history and community memory as well as for empowerment. Artistic and cultural movements such as the New Negro, Black Arts, Black Reniassance, hip-hop, and Afrofuturism, have been led by people of African descent and set the standard for popular trends around the world. In 2024, we examine the varied history and life of African American arts and artisans."
Association for the Study of African American Life and History

2024 Black History Month - BCI Sponsored Programs

  • The Space Race Screening and Conversation with Ed Dwight

    Feb. 1st, 6:00pm

    Location: Sturm Hall – Davis Auditorium 

    The Space Race' uncovers the little-known stories of the first Black pilots, engineers and scientists that became astronauts. This documentary weaves together the stories of Black astronauts seeking to break the bonds of social injustice to reach for the stars, including Guion Bluford, Charles Bolden and DU and CAHSS alumnus Ed Dwight. 

    From 1963, when the assassination of JFK thwarted Captain Ed Dwight's quest to reach the moon, to 2020, when the echoes of the civil unrest sparked by the killing of George Floyd reached the International Space Station, the story of African Americans at NASA is a tale of world events colliding with the aspirations of uncommon men. 

    Register here

  • Community Art Creation Workshop

    Feb. 2nd, 5:00pm - 7:00pm

    Location: Community Commons 1001 

    This sign-up is for the Community Art Creation Workshop with local artist ZoidHam on February 2, 2024, from 5-7 PM in Community Commons 1001. This workshop will explore how to Black bodies exist, take up space, are policed, and cultivate joy. During this two-hour block of time you will develop your own narrative and then create a piece that reflects your newly articulated narrative. This event is open to all levels of experience with art.  
    Any questions? Email du.bci@edu 

    Register here

  • What’s Behind the Mask?: The Multitudes of Blackness

    Feb. 5th, 12:00pm

    Location: Community Commons 1001 

    Step into a transformative glimpse behind the mask at our art gallery exhibit, “What’s Behind the Mask?: The Multitudes of Blackness” where Black identity takes center stage.” This exhibit explores the profound themes of Black identity exploration, taking up space, and the concept of double consciousness. Crafted by DU Black-identified community members, these cultivated art pieces are the outcomes of guided discussions about how we construct ourselves in racialized spaces. Each piece reflects the unique perspectives, struggles, and triumphs within the Black community, inviting viewers to engage in a dialogue that transcends the canvas. Capturing resilience and embodying the complexities of double consciousness, this exhibit is a celebration of diversity and an exploration of the multifaceted nature of Black identity. Join us in fostering understanding, empathy, and appreciation for the rich tapestry of experiences that shape the narratives of Black lives. 

  • Black Community Dinner in Partnership with The Cultural Center

    Feb. 8th, 6:00pm

    Location: Saucey’s Southern Cuisine | 2100 S University Blvd, Denver, CO 80210 

    Join us for our first Black Community Dinner at Saucey’s Southern Cuisine during Black History Month. Celebrate culture and connection with delicious Southern flavors from 6-7:30 PM. Engage in meaningful conversations, savor soulful dishes, and embrace the unity that defines our community. An evening of warmth, laughter, and togetherness awaits! This event is designed to support the Black community at DU and is open to students, staff, and faculty.  

  • Black Love Day

    Feb. 14th, 11:00am - 1:00pm

    Location: Community Commons 1700 

    Join the BCI Team in the Community Commons as we celebrate the love, people, and cultures from across the African Diaspora. We will have our "Black Love" Photo Booth, quick activities, and some sweet treats! Come stop by our Common Commons 1700 to learn and celebrate with us! 

  • Valentine’s Day Concert in partnership with Music Department

    Feb. 14th, 6:00pm

    Location: Newman Center

    Join the LWE on Valentine’s Day for a romantic program that features guest artists Igor Pikayzen, Tatiana Mayfield Brown, and Cleo Parker Robinson Dance! Pikayzen is the soloist in Corigliano’s “The Red Violin” concerto, and Mayfield Brown performs a set of Gershwin love songs. Dancers from Cleo Parker Robinson perform to Bernstein’s Three Dance Episodes from “On the Town.”

    For more information, please visit the Newman Center's website 

  • Celebrate Black Art Jubilee

    Feb. 15th, 6:30pm

    Location: Burwell 340

    Step into a celebration of Black History Month hosted by BSA, ASU, and the Cultural Center! Get ready for a fantastic event showcasing the incredible talent of local black artists. Join us for an evening filled with beautiful art, good vibes, and a chance to meet and support these amazing creatives. Don't miss out on this vibrant gathering and register early! 

    Register here

  • BCI Scholarly Show & Tell

    Feb. 20th, 4:00pm - 5:30pm

    Location: Burwell 340 

    The "BCI Scholarly Show & Tell" is a platform that shines a spotlight on the outstanding contributions made by Black faculty and staff members at the University of Denver. This event offers a space for these exceptional Black scholars to present their multifaceted research, scholarly endeavors, creative works, and accomplishments through concise 5-minute mini-presentations. Following these engaging presentations, we extend a warm invitation to attendees to mingle and engage in informal discussions.  

    Our aspiration is that activities of this nature will bring us a step closer to gaining insights into the innovative work within our respective fields and create opportunities for the exchange of ideas. Light refreshments and a variety of beverages, both alcoholic and non-alcoholic, will be available for both our attendees and presenters to enjoy. 

  • Harm in the Hush Harbor: Exploring the Impact of Spiritual Trauma in the Black Church on Black Millennials and Generation Z

    Feb. 21st, 10:00am - 11:30am

    Location: Burwell 120 

    Join us in witnessing the doctoral dissertation defense of one of our community members, Indhira Udofia, Visiting Teaching Assistant Professor of Critical Race and Ethnic Studies.  


Black Community Initiatives

For more information on Black Community Initiatives (BCI) at the University of Denver

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Call for Programs

Please submit your Black History Month 2024 program(s) via this form. Any program submitted will be added to our 2024 BHM Heritage Month webpage and included in our community communications. There is no deadline to submit your program but please allow us 48 hours to update the website for all submissions after February 1, 2024.

Please send any program changes to John Miller IV, Associate Director of DEI, Black Community Initiatives at

Click here

As we are working with departments to produce the most impactful programs, please check out the questions below that can help guide our contributions to the conversation. If you would like to meet with BCI staff to discuss your program (logistics, topics, feedback, etc.) please schedule a meeting with us using this Bookings link.

  1. How does this program relate specifically to Black History Month?
  2. How is this program FOR Black identified folx? How does it relate specifically to Black identified faculty, staff, or students? 
  3. How is this program ABOUT folx within the African Diaspora? What would you like people outside of the African diaspora to take away from this program and how are you curating those outcomes?
  4. What kind of collaboration/feedback are you looking for from the BCI staff?