Black United Students

What can I do with an AFS degree?

Students who major or minor in an Africana studies degree program have unlimited opportunities in the career field of their choice. Students graduate with a keen understanding of the social, cultural and economic issues facing people of African descent and other Peoples of Color. They graduate as competent and skilled professionals who are able to assist organizations in a variety of ways.  

Kent State students walk to and from class.

The nation watched in anger and shock as a white police officer in Minneapolis nonchalantly knelt on the neck of George Floyd, an African American man, who had been accused of passing a counterfeit $20 bill until he uttered the words “I can’t breathe.” Floyd’s brief encounter with the police, which was recorded and subsequently disseminated to the world, was the latest in numerous encounters in which unarmed African American men and women have died at the hands of police or other citizens taking the law into their own hands. Floyd’s death set off national, even global, outrag...

Note: The following essay was crafted by Tayjua Hines, president of Black United Students (BUS), a student organization at Kent State University. Founded in 1968, the underlying philosophy of BUS is to serve and unify all Black students at Kent State by addressing their needs.  ------------- As a community, Black citizens have seen more than enough of our own treated unjustly, brutalized and murdered by law enforcement. For me, my first realization of the value that America places on its Black citizens was when Trayvon Martin was killed by police, how he received no justic...

Note: The following essay was crafted by Amoaba Gooden, Ph.D., Kent State University’s interim vice president for diversity, equity and inclusion, and chair and associate professor in the Department of Pan-African Studies. Created in 2009, the Division of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion leads the university’s efforts to increase diverse representation, create and sustain equity of opportunity and intentionally foster an inclusive environment. The Department of Pan-African Studies focuses on the study of communities of people of African descent both on the continent of Africa a...

Kent State University’s Director of Public Safety and Police Chief Dean Tondiglia was honored with the university’s 2019 Diversity Trailblazer Award for his years of promoting inclusion and diversity within public safety. Chief Tondiglia was nominated for the award by Mark Polatajko, senior vice president for finance and administration, who praised the chief for promoting diversity and inclusion “by word and deed.” Chief Tondiglia was an early advocate for the adoption of the Sexual Assault Response Team and the development of the Sexual and Relationship Violence Support Services office.&nbs...

A student walkout in 1968 contributed to the launch of Black United Students (BUS), which is commemorating 50 years at Kent State. (Photo from the collection of E. Timothy Moore)

Set against the backdrop of five decades of dynamic social change, the powerful “BUS at 50 Reloaded” photography exhibit in Ritchie Hall’s Uumbaji Gallery highlights the impact and influence of the Black United Students (BUS) organization at Kent State University since its founding in 1968. The show runs through Nov. 14.  Curated by professors Lae’l Hughes-Watkins and Idris Kabir Syed, the exhibit chronicles black student life over the last 50 years with a collection of photographs by E. Timothy Moore and Lafayette Tolliver, both students at the time the images were taken. Mr. Moore, ’7...

Communication Studies majors are playing vital roles in this year’s Black History Month celebration at Kent State University. Roslynn Porch, Dairia Harvin, Mary Rogers, Dwain Ross and Olivia Thompson are executive board members of Black United Students (BUS). Founded in 1968, BUS is one of the oldest student organizations on campus. Porch, BUS president, planned the “Your Black is Beautiful” event, which is scheduled to take place later this month in the Kent Student Center. BUS members will pass out candy attached to notes of encouragement to students. “As a student leader, I just wa...