Black Student Life on Campus
In speaking of his time as one of the first Black students at Harvard in the 19th century, scholar W. E. B. Du Bois said that he was “at but not of Harvard.” Though separated by time and space, Du Bois’s statement echoes in the sentiments of Black students at UGA in the years after 1961. The enrollment of the first two Black students had desegregated the campus, ending the policy of racial segregation. However, the intentional process of integration would take longer for the institution to achieve.
The Black students who came to UGA after Holmes, Hunter, and Early faced their own struggles, and forged their own community. They challenged the administration to make changes to curriculum, staff, and campus culture that would embrace a more diverse student body. From calling for an end to the playing of “Dixie” at university athletic events to founding the first Black student organizations, these students advocated for themselves and worked toward building a new UGA.