Magazine article Diverse Issues in Higher Education

Columbia University's Institute of African Studies Reopens under New Leadership

Magazine article Diverse Issues in Higher Education

Columbia University's Institute of African Studies Reopens under New Leadership

Article excerpt

Columbia University has reopened its Institute of African Studies and has hired a new director as a result of widespread protests among students and alumni.

The 48-year-old research center, which is housed in Columbia's School of International Public Affairs, was temporarily dosed last year because of a lack of funding. At the time, university officials said that they were having a difficult time finding someone qualified to run the day-to-day operations of the institute, which is principally charged with organizing Columbia's programs and courses that focus on Africa.

[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED]

Recently, the university announced that it has hired Dr. Mamadou Diouf to fill the position of director that has been open since 2004. The announcement was greeted by cheers from students and alumni who say that the appointment was long overdue.

"I'm extremely excited about his being appointed," says Christabel Dadzie, who is president of the SIPA Pan-African Network. "He wants to make Africa part of the discussion. We have someone who knows what he's talking about."

Diouf, who served as a professor of history and African-American and African studies at the University of Michigan, says that he is hopeful that Columbia will broaden its reach beyond campus to work with the growing African community in nearby Harlem.

"I think it is impossible to have a program like ours here and not be involved with Harlem," says Diouf, adding that he hopes to spearhead the work of improving and strengthening relations between Africans and African-Americans.

He says that he is planning lectures, conferences and roundtable discussions that will bring African scholars to campus from around the world. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.