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Black Cultural Center Fund: Supporting Black Student Success at UW-Madison

Celebration. Community. Legacy.

The Black Cultural Center (BCC) at the University of Wisconsin-Madison serves Black students by facilitating opportunities for academic and social support, co-curricular programming, and community building. It exists to acknowledge the specific and particular realities of Black communities at UW-Madison, while also connecting communities to the larger Wisconsin Experience and fostering a sense of belonging. The BCC is one of three identity centers within the Multicultural Student Center, a Student Affairs department at UW-Madison.

The impact of the national climate for Black people in the U.S. can amplify feelings of isolation and un-belonging that Black Badgers may feel on campus. Thus, this fund was created to supplement campus initiatives that build community, celebrate Black culture and existence, and honor the legacy of advocacy and action within Black communities at UW-Madison.

The original Black Cultural Center opened in 1968 as the Center for Afro-American and Race Relations with the purpose of encouraging the development of Afro-American studies, serving as a source for public activities, and acting as a meeting place for students and community members. The center was closed in 1974 due to its funds being reallocated into three positions in the Dean of Students office to support Black, Latinx, and Native students. Forty-three years later on May 3, 2017, the institution again recognized the need for a dedicated space for Black students by opening the BCC. This action was driven by student activism and campus leadership’s acknowledgement that improvements were needed in the campus climate. That work and need continues today. Given this context, the necessity of concerted and institutionalized support for Black students at UW-Madison is as critical as ever.

“The BCC has positively impacted my Wisconsin Experience by creating a safe environment for me to work, have a good laugh, or even take a quick nap in. Every time I walk in, I am always greeted with a smile from one of the front desk workers or Lauren, and they are always willing to provide resources or refill the printer. The BCC for me is a home away from home on campus and allows me to meet amazing individuals and to explore numerous opportunities.”
– Brittany, Sophomore Management & Human Resources: Entrepreneurship Major


Take Action – Make an Impact

Donations to this fund will go directly to support vital student programming and initiatives that uplift and affirm the voices, experiences, and dynamic lives of Black undergraduate, graduate, and professional students. Through initiatives like Black Student Orientation, Black History Month programming, immersive experiential trips to cities like Chicago and Washington, D.C., art exhibits, leadership experiences and opportunities to engage in social justice, together we can ensure that vital financial resources are allocated to provide community, connection, and belonging for Black students at UW-Madison.

In efforts to ensure the longevity of the BCC and support for Black students, this fund will exist in perpetuity.

For information after this campaign ends, contact bcc@studentlife.wisc.edu

“The BCC is a space where you meet lifelong friends and make amazing memories. It is a space full of love, laughter, tears and education. It’s where I get to unwind from the stresses of the day with a game of spades. The BCC is my home away from home.”
– Tierra, Senior Theatre & Drama Major

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