About the Department

The Department of Africana Studies is a well established academic unit of the University of Cincinnati's McMicken College of Arts and Sciences. From Dr. William David Smith's appointment as the first director in 1970 to the present day it has evolved into a comprehensive degree-granting department aimed at providing a first-rate education while maintaining a balanced relationship between academic excellence and social responsibility. The department was originally called the Department of African and African American Studies. The name was changed to the Department of Africana Studies in 2009 to reflect the growing interest and emphasis of the African Diaspora and the migration of Africans around the world to the Americas, Europe and the Caribbean.

The Department of Africana Studies is a scholar-activist department that encourages research and scholarship in many dimensions of African Diaspora experiences. Students enrolled in the department as majors receive the Bachelor of Arts degree. In addition to the major program, the department has also developed a number of other important academic and culturally-based programs, including a minor and more specialized African and Minority Health certificates. Additional information on these programs is included within this website.

The faculty and staff of the Department of Africana Studies are dedicated to enabling students to receive the best education possible. Moreover, since we also believe that learning is a two-way process and that there is no substitute for "Brain Power," we are dedicated to the kinds of research that will be beneficial to each student and the larger community.