"He loved UConn and was a student affairs vice president during the 70s...African American alums of that era revered Dr. Simons. They felt that he was their advisor, protector, mentor, and friend."

—Dr. Willena Price, former director of the African American Cultural Center

Dr. H. Fred Simons

August 20, 1925 - April 10, 2013

Dr. Simons had a significant presence in the history of the University of Connecticut (UConn). For his early efforts in multicultural education, the African American Cultural Center was named after him. He was one of the first African American Students to receive a doctorate from the NEAG School of Education. He was responsible for restructuring the Day of Pride and established the first university full scholarship for students of color. Often looked upon as a role model and father figure, he was easily approachable and was seen by students and faculty as fair, compassionate, firm, and professional.
Dr. Simons retired in 1989 but continued to visit the African American Cultural Center on an annual basis. In 2007, he was presented the University of Connecticut’s Provost Pioneer Award for Diversity and in 2008, he was honored for his lifetime of service to the field of education by the NEAG School of Education.

Learn more about Dr. Simons here

Featuring February: Black History Month

Now Featuring: February, Black History Month

Signature Programs

Welcome Back Dinner

One of the Center’s most anticipated signature programs, the Welcome Back Dinner is a staple of the fall semester. Held in September, the dinner welcomes new and returning students, faculty, staff and community members to celebrate the beginning of another academic year at the University of Connecticut. The Welcome Back Dinner has also been used as a space to mark the passing of notable members of the African American community, and to honor the memories of those lost in tragic events.

Learn more here

Kwanzaa

Kwanzaa is an African American and Pan-African holiday which celebrates family, community and culture. At the close of the fall semester the African American Cultural Center sponsors the traditional feast and lighting of the kinara as a part of a Kwanzaa celebration for the entire campus to enjoy.

Learn more here

Black History Month

For the entire month of February the Center works especially hard to celebrate African American legacy and culture through various lectures, workshops, exhibits, and artistic symposiums. The Black History Month Opening and Closing Ceremonies are among the Center’s signature programs and represent just a small portion of the events of the month. In addition, the organizations affiliated with the AACC also take part in the programming with student-run events and cultural shows.

Learn more here

Spotlight: Student Resources

PUMP Mentoring

The PNB Undergraduate Mentoring Program is a peer mentoring/tutoring program within the physiology and neurobiology department. It focuses on fundamental courses like PNB 2274/75 and PNB 3251. It aims to provide a supportive and inclusive earning environment by increasing access to peer mentors and reducing language barriers to learning.

MAGIC

MAGIC stands for Mentoring Aspiring Graduate Students and building an Inclusive Community Connect, and is a mentoring program for aspiring graduate students in the field of psychology. MAGIC's mission is to connect underrepresented and first generation students with mentors. The overall goal is to provide a greater support structure for these students and provide them with the tools they need to succeed in their graduate school applications and beyond.

Please apply to become a peer-mentor for incoming first year and transfer students. This will be a great leadership opportunity for your personal and professional growth. Selected rising sophomores, juniors, and seniors will become peer mentors for incoming first-year and transfer students in Fall 2023/Spring 2024, and they will be enrolled in a 1-credit class this Spring 2023. The class time is We 4:40PM - 5:30PM (Note: the class is still listed as UNIV 2230 - The PA2SS Program, Mentoring African American Students in the system). Scan the QR code or reach out directly to share the application link with you. If you have any questions, please let us know! ...

Mark your calendars!! @uconnour ...

The AACC is inviting you to sign up for attending our celebration of Kwanzaa and Dr. Price's retirement. Dinner will be served, and space is limited -- so RSVP! The event will take place on Friday, Dec 9th, 2022 - 6:00 PM at the Student Union Ballroom (RM 330), and it will be livestreamed for those who are not able to attend. The link to the livestream is: https://s.uconn.edu/SUBallroom ...

Hope to see you on November 11th. ...

Hi UConn Nation! The AACC is undergoing an external review, and we are looking for students, alumni, faculty, and staff to share their perspectives about how the center is serving the needs of members of the UConn community. The responses will be thematically analyzed by independent facilitators unaffiliated with UCONN, to best protect your anonymity. We would greatly appreciate it if you can fill the survey. Thank you for your time! ...