Organization name: Butler University

Program Type

Leadership skills & college/career prep programs

Ages Served:

19-25 Years


Brief Program Summary: The basis for the Hub for Black Affairs and Community Engagement proposal was in response to President Danko’s email of June 19, 2020– a day that commemorates Juneteenth where he acknowledged systemic racism and institutionalized oppressive conditions that have made it difficult for Black people collectively to thrive. President Danko mentioned four particular areas of accountability: Education, Organization, Behavior and Procedure, with a clear commitment to effect real change. The Hub is anchored in the abolitionist roots of Butler University, founded by Ovid Butler in 1855 that included African Americans and women as part of the admission process. It elevates and centers the disparate Black voice that has been sidelined and sometimes oppressed as evidenced by the policy of the 1920s that allowed only ten Black students to be admitted and the current Black faculty, staff and students who still face marginalizing campus experiences today, that often leave us demeaned and traumatized. It is intentionally related to the current focus and heightened awareness of the ongoing systemic injustices that are faced by Black people. It fully embraces the long-term dedication and expertise of faculty in academic areas of diversity whose work in and out of the classroom is already in place to be supportive, focused and in alignment with the imperative to address racialized and intersectional disparities both within and outside of the institution. And further, this Hub will both deepen and elevate a significant level of intersectional expertise across Butler University that can readily respond to the many ongoing and expected issues that may arise in relationship to systemic and institutional racism. The timing of this Hub is also in the context of the city of Indianapolis celebrating its Bicentennial which itself is going through a reflective time of racial reconciliation. It dovetails with the United Nations International Decade for People of African Descent (2015-2024) and aligns with their global diasporic lens to address the challenges facing our local Black Butler and Indianapolis community. [There is] a palpable energy around both the pandemic and the Black Lives Matter Movement, and Butler University has the chance to be a leader in the local and even national community. Like many institutions of higher learning around the country, Butler needs to take inventory of its own practices and properly recognize the relevant work the University is already doing to respond to the moral imperative resounding in the streets. The establishment of the Butler University Hub for Black Affairs and Community Engagement serves as a central repository of the institution’s efforts from all corners of the campus so that this information can be quickly dispatched, both for purposes of connecting communities to Butler and within Butler, and for making visible the deep and abiding commitment to social and racial justice.
Success Metrics: N/A


Number Served & Racial Distribution:

Total Number of Individuals Annually Served


Black or African Americans Annually Served


Hispanic or Latinos Annually Served


Geographic Scope:

− Central Indiana Counties: Marion
− Additional/Other Areas of Focus: N/A


Annual Operating Cost: N/A
Initial Start-Up Cost: $0

Contact Information

Organization Name: Butler University
Respondents Name: Jonathan Purvis
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