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Inside Iowa State, a newspaper for faculty and staff, is published by the Office of University Relations.

Feb. 9, 2007

Black Cultural Center reopens this month

by Anne Krapfl

The university and Ames communities are invited to a rededication of the Black Cultural Center on Welch Avenue Wednesday, Feb. 14. The rededication begins with a reception at 3:30 p.m. and program at 4 p.m. in the Knapp-Storms dining complex. Following the program, guests may take a tour of the renovated house at 517 Welch Ave., about 1.5 blocks north of the dining complex.

RSVPs are requested by Feb. 9 to the office of Multicultural Student Affairs (MSA), 4-6338, so that an accurate number of tour groups can be organized.

The Black Cultural Center was created in 1969 as a non-profit organization affiliated with the university. Its Welch Avenue facility received a significant renovation in 1997, but maintenance issues and water problems in the basement led to its closing in 2003.

Members of the Black Student Alliance, later joined by leadership from the Government of the Student Body, started the momentum to renovate the building again and re-open it. The university, led by the president's office, and the city, led by the mayor's office, were key funders of the project.

"This definitely has been a 'One Community' effort," said George Jackson, assistant dean of the Graduate College and board member of the BCC. "The students made a move to help themselves and others saw that."

The house now has useable space on all four levels, including a renovated basement and full kitchen. The driveway was replaced and new furnishings and computers also were purchased.

MSA will manage the facility. Ames and university groups, whether or not they're related to black culture, are welcome to use the facility for meetings and retreats, said Lynn Lundy Evans, a coordinator of multicultural student development in MSA. Contact the MSA office to make arrangements, she said.


"This definitely has been a 'One Community' effort. The students made a move to help themselves and others saw that."

-George Jackson, assistant dean, Graduate College board member, Black Cultural Center