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Mission and Governance of the Center

The Kansas African Studies Center coordinates and develops interdisciplinary interests in all areas of African Studies across the University of Kansas, and promotes an understanding of Africa and its diaspora in the university, the state of Kansas, the Midwest, and beyond. The Center's mission includes the enhancement of curriculum, the sponsorship of research, the organization of conferences, the promotion of special projects, the acquisition of library and related resources, and the implementation of outreach programs. KASC actively pursues funding opportunities to make these activities possible and assist the university in their realization. 

The Center Director is appointed by the Dean of the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences. The Executive Committee includes the Director, the Assistant Director, the Faculty Associate Director, the African Language Coordinator, a representative from KU Libraries, and one faculty member from the Department of African & African-American Studies. In addition, five at-large faculty representatives  from the professional schools and the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences (humanities, social sciences, and natural sciences) are elected by the Council. One student representative is also a voting member. Ex officio members of the Executive Committee are the Chair of the Department of African & African-American Studies, the Dean of International Programs or a representative, and the Associate Dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences for International and Interdisciplinary Studies. The Executive Committee usually meets monthly and functions as the major policy-formulating body for the Center.

(From the Bylaws adopted by the University of Kansas African Studies Council, April 24, 1998. Revised April, 2007, March 2016)

KASC, as well as other area studies centers, reports to the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences and works with Graduate Studies and the Office of International Programs. The Center has a direct and dynamic relationship with the Department of African & African-American Studies.

2016-17 Executive Committee Members:

KASC: Elizabeth MacGonagle (Director), Peter Ojiambo (Faculty Associate Director & Language Coordinator), Cecile Accilien (AAAS and Language Coordinator in 2017) and Mackenzie Jones (Assistant Director) 

At-Large Members: Byron Caminero-Santangelo (English and Environmental Studies) Mohamed El-Hodiri (Economics), Stacey Vanderhurst (WGSS),  Musa Olaka (KU Libraries), Van Kelly (French and Italian), Abel Chikanda (AAAS/Geography), Antje Ziethen (French & Italian/SLLC) and Marwa Ghazali (Graduate Student, Anthropology)

Migration Stories: Africans in Midwestern Communities

The Kansas African Studies Center has received $140,000 in funding from the National Endowment for the Humanities to launch public discussions, community programming, and the creation of educational resources in local communities to discuss the challenges and opportunities surrounding recent demographic changes in the region. With close to 10,000 African immigrants living today in the heartland metropolitan centers of Kansas City, Lawrence, Topeka, Emporia, Wichita and Garden City, a new project entitled “Migration Stories” will facilitate the sharing of migration stories about Africans within Midwestern communities. Visit to learn more. 

Upcoming Events
Join us tomorrow, Friday, March 31 7th Annual KASC Graduate Research Workshop Divine Nine Room, Kansas Union,...

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