Featured Image

Excellent College Extracurriculars for Black Students and Allies

Searching for college activities that support the Black student experience? This list of clubs, organizations, and networks is just scratching the surface!

College isn’t just about academics; it's a transformative journey that involves personal growth, networking, and community engagement. For many Black students, finding a supportive and culturally enriching environment within the vast college landscape is crucial. Fortunately, colleges across the country offer a plethora of extracurricular activities and campus organizations tailored to the diverse interests and aspirations of Black students and allies. Here are just a few examples of amazing groups to look for during your college search or at your current school.

Black Student Union (BSU)

The Black Student Union is a vital hub for fostering a sense of community and activism at thousands of colleges (and even some high schools) across the country. First established in the 1960s as a way for students to protest racial discrimination, this organization focuses on advocating for the needs and concerns of Black students on campus while addressing issues such as diversity, equity, and inclusion. BSUs organize campus events that celebrate Black history, provide mentorship programs, promote volunteerism, and engage in social justice initiatives. You’ll find chapters at almost every college in the US, including:

Related: List: Colleges With Active Black Communities 

African Student Association (ASA)

Another prominent and unifying extracurricular group you’ll find on many college campuses is the African Student Association, an organization that celebrates the rich and varied cultures of the African continent. Through events, performances, and cultural exchanges, the ASA provides a space for all students to connect, share experiences, learn from their peers, and promote understanding.

The National African Student Association offers a performance-based scholarship of $7,000 or more to students serving on its National Executive Board, but you’ll also find ASA chapters at schools like Georgia State University, Agnes Scott College, and more. Similar groups such as the African Student Union at Michigan State University serve as a community for African students as well as others who are committed to learning about, promoting, and uplifting African culture.

Professional development and leadership organizations

Many colleges have established organizations specifically designed to empower Black students in their professional journeys. These groups focus on career development, mentorship, networking opportunities, and scholarships for members. Just a few examples include:

Look for chapters of these groups and more at your college(s), then research how you can become a member before or after graduation. Beyond national associations, you’ll also find smaller groups for professional development and leadership in different fields of study, like the Black Business Students Association at Columbia University or the Multicultural Student Nurses Association at the University of Delaware.

Cultural and artistic groups

For those with a passion for arts and culture, colleges offer a variety of dance, music, art, and heritage groups that celebrate Black and African cultures while highlighting students’ creativity, talents, and backgrounds. From dance troupes and spoken word poetry clubs to arts coalitions and ancestry organizations, these groups provide a platform for self-expression and cultural exploration. Great examples include:

  • DoroBucci Dance, a premier African dance group at Princeton University with showcases like Black Renaissance Weekend
  • Tiger Steel, Ouachita Baptist University's Advanced Steel Drum Ensemble that performs calypso and soca music from the Caribbean nation of Trinidad and Tobago
  • The University of Georgia's Black Artists Alliance, a space that offers support, exhibits, and community for Black student artists at UGA
  • The Ohio State University’s Caribbean Student Association, a group that celebrates and shares island cuisine, study abroad opportunities, music, and more with the campus and local community

Related: Fostering Diversity: College Clubs That Welcome Students of All Cultures

Athletic activities and networks

Sports have always been a powerful avenue for camaraderie and teamwork in student-athletes. Many organizations host affinity groups and events that foster a sense of belonging, support, and empowerment among Black athletes in particular. Schools like The George Washington University offer the Black Student-Athlete Alliance, a group led by students to uplift Black voices in the athletic community. Similarly, the Black Student Athlete Group at Vanderbilt University works to celebrate, support, and educate the student body with a focus on athletic activism, social justice, and other issues affecting Black student-athletes. On the national level, conferences like the Black Student Athlete Summit offer opportunities for student-athletes of all types to network and prepare to compete in the postgrad workforce.

Groups for intersectional identities

Many college extracurricular groups go beyond racial identity by recognizing and embracing students’ intersectional identities, including gender, sexuality, religion, and more. These types of groups create spaces where individuals can explore the unique intersections of their Black identity with other aspects of their lives, fostering a sense of belonging and understanding. Groups like Sisters United at Boston University, Queer and Trans People of Color at the University of Colorado Boulder, and Black Campus Ministries contribute to a more inclusive college environment that encourages holistic self-expression and collaboration among students of various backgrounds.

Related: 6 Important Intersectional Identities to Consider in Your College Search

The diverse extracurricular landscape at so many institutions is a testament to the commitment of campus communities to foster inclusivity and celebrate diversity. These options not only provide avenues for personal and professional growth but also create spaces where Black students and supporters can connect, share experiences, and thrive. There are so many other great groups, networks, councils, associations, and clubs available beyond this. As colleges continue to prioritize diversity and inclusion, this expanding array of extracurricular activities ensures that every student can find their niche and make the most of their college experience.

Interested in learning more about the featured schools mentioned in this article? Click the buttons below to request more information and start a conversation!

Connect with Agnes Scott! Connect with Boston University! Connect with Brown!

Connect with Elon! Connect with Holy Cross! Connect with Columbia!

Connect with George Washington! Connect with Georgia State! Connect with Michigan State!

Connect with Ohio State! Connect with Ouachita Baptist! Connect with Princeton!

Connect with Seattle University! Connect with CU Boulder! Connect with University of Delaware!

Connect with University of Georgia! Connect with Vanderbilt!

Like what you’re reading?

Join the CollegeXpress community! Create a free account and we’ll notify you about new articles, scholarship deadlines, and more.

Join Now

Join our community of
over 5 million students!

CollegeXpress has everything you need to simplify your college search, get connected to schools, and find your perfect fit.

Join CollegeXpress
Keaun Brown

Keaun Brown

$2,000 Community Service Scholarship Winner, 2020

As I transition to furthering my education, I can say with certainty that it simply wouldn’t be possible without the help of generous organizations such as CollegeXpress. Those who initially founded CX had no idea their platform would give a plethora of information to a first-generation homeless kid native to the ghettos of over half a dozen states. Everyone at CX and Carnegie Dartlet gave me a chance at a future when the statistics said I had none. And for that, I thank them.

Chris Bell

Chris Bell

Bell College Consulting

The college lists on CollegeXpress are indispensable for sussing out creative additions to a student’s list, and the college-specific pages provide terrific commentary and suggestions for related schools. CollegeXpress is among the most trusted sources I use for information for my students.

Tariq Adam Khatib

Tariq Adam Khatib

High School Class of 2022

CollegeXpress helped me a lot. I am a Tanzania boy who finished my high school studies in Tanzania. I never knew I could get an opportunity to get a scholarship to study abroad. I am happy that now I know how to find the school to study abroad through CollegeXpress.

Yuhlani Patterson

Yuhlani Patterson

High School Student

CollegeXpress has helped me find so many scholarships that fit me. They match me to colleges I have specific interest in to make searching for colleges way easier and more efficient. CollegeXpress refers me to schools that have my major of interest and backup schools if I want to change my mind. CollegeXpress also gives out their own scholarships, so you have even more of a chance at gaining multiple scholarships. This website has helped me de-stress from the pressure of not being able to afford college, [of finding] what schools are right for me, and how to find easy access to scholarships that most people never knew existed.

Rayan Hamdan

Rayan Hamdan

High School Student

I joined CollegeXpress just a few months ago. I had been struggling with severe anxiety, causing me to not be able to tour schools and make sure a college would be perfect for me. I came across CollegeXpress one day when I was searching for colleges online, and it completely changed the game. I was easily able to choose colleges that would suit me, and I also entered a few giveaways! Thank you so much!

College Matches
X

Colleges You May Be Interested In

SUNY Maritime College

Throggs Neck, NY

High Point University

High Point, NC

Moody Bible Institute

Chicago, IL

Geneva College

Beaver Falls, PA