Programs

Freshman Pinning Ceremony:The purpose of this ceremony is to welcome our first-year students into academic life at Indian University Bloomington. It is an opportunity for them to recognize their place within the legacy of Black academe here at Indiana University, as well as an introduction to Black student leaders, faculty, staff, and community members. The Neal and Marshall Black Culture Center Pin is presented to each first-year student as a commemoration of the ceremony.

Neal-Marshall Leadership Academy:The Neal-Marshall Leadership Academy is a four-month leadership development program hosted by the Neal-Marshall Black Culture Center for first-year, first-semester African American students. This program is designed to assist first year African American students with: 1) Building a cohort of peers, 2) Connecting to the Neal-Marshall Black Culture Center for involvement and support opportunities, 3) Engaging with the Indiana University Bloomington community, and 4) Identifying and developing their leadership styles.

UMOJA (OO-MO-JAH) DAY:Umoja (Unity) Day is named after one of the 7 principles of Kwanzaa. The purpose of Umoja Day is to connect Black students, faculty and staff to the resources and services available to them on the IUB campus and within the Bloomington community. During this event, the NMBCC invites local and national Businesses, student organizations, campus services, and academic departments to share information/ Umoja Day also host a select group of vendors specializing in apparel, art, literature, and accessories that celebrate Black culture and history.

Black Alumni Weekend:Annually, the NMBCC invites Black alumni to visit the center to participate in Umoja Day and the annually Fish Fry. This event will typically take place in September and may include a small fee for participation.

Critical Conversations:Periodically, during the academic year, the NMBCC will host Critical Conversation series as an opportunity for the IUB community to come together to discuss current issues and topics relating to the Black experience and beyond. These events are often produce collaboratively with various campus partners.

Black Knowledge Bowl:An academic tradition at the NMBCC that started in the early 1980’s by IUB’s very own Dr. Portia Maultsby. The annual Black Knowledge Bowl is an academically competitive program which will test student knowledge regarding the history, geography, science, philosophy, and politics of African Americans in the United States and around the world. The Neal-Marshall Black Culture Center invites individuals to for teams to test their knowledge of black history and culture in this jeopardy-style, fun event. Community member, faculty, and IU staff serve as judges and moderators, and the top three winning teams receive monetary prizes.

First Friday:The NMBCC hosts and/or cosponsors First Friday, which is often a themed event (Family Dinner, Game Night, etc...). The goal of our First Friday event is to facilitate opportunities for IUB students, faculty, staff, alumni, and Bloomington community to network and share resources. Good food and great fellowship are the fundamentals of First Friday, and these events are often supported by student organizations who serve as volunteers.

Mid-Day House Party:Every second Wednesday the NMBCC hosts the Mid-day House Party to provide the NMBCC staff an opportunity to check-in with students and a casual atmosphere for students to unwind. These parties provide opportunities for the NMBCC staff, graduate and undergraduate students to build community, network, share experiences, and resources.

Family Night:Family Night is a fun filled evening geared toward IU students and members of the Bloomington community who have young children. It is an interactive family centered event that educates elementary aged youth about the Black experience through a variety of activities such as African storytelling, African Drumming, and Stepping. Some of the many activities include a bounce house, face painting, balloons, snacks, arts and crafts, games, music, Humane Society visits etc...

Pre-Kwanzaa:Kwanzaa is an African American holiday celebrated from December 26 through January 1st. It is based on the agricultural celebration of Africa called "the first fruits" celebrations, which celebrate the times of harvest, gathering, reverence, commemoration of the past, recommitment to cultural ideals and celebration of the good. Since classes are not in session during the actual celebration of Kwanzaa, we host a Pre-Kwanzaa celebration where we explain the 7 principles of Kwanzaa and share a community meal.

Black Faculty and Staff Recognition:This is a community building and retention event facilitated by NMBCC. Students are able to nominate Black faculty and staff that they believe have been integral to their success at IUB. The faculty and staff member that receive the highest number of nominations receive the Student Choice Award. All faculty and staff who receive nominations are recognized and receive certificates at the Black Faculty and Staff Recognition Luncheon. This is an awesome opportunity that allows IU students and NMBCC to recognize the important role that faculty and staff play in supporting and retaining our students.

CAPS Partnership:The NMBCC understands that today’s college students face complex challenges and we are committed to supporting students both socially and emotionally. Our partnership with Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS), affords us an opportunity to perhaps reach students who might not traditionally seek out counseling when faced with challenging situations.

Black Congratulatory Celebration:The Black Congratulatory Celebration is a celebration to honor African and African American students; who through unyielding determination have successfully completed an undergraduate or graduate degree from the Indiana University. The Ceremony is representative of African and African American culture and heritage, embraces the value of community and scholarship, and culminates with a Kente Stole presentation. This is a Celebration for Graduates to be recognized for their accomplishments and provided an opportunity to honor significant people who have helped them achieve their goal. Students are honored together in one setting, and their families also get the opportunity to celebrate their hard work and dedication.