About the Project

Re-membering Blackness at The University of Scranton  shares the University’s racial story. This work was led by the Institutional Black History subcommittee of the University’s Council for Diversity and Inclusion over the 2021-2022 academic year. The subcommittee sought to examine the University’s historical relationships with Black faculty, staff, students and the broader community as part of campus efforts to address anti-Black racism and foster greater diversity, equity and inclusion. Grounded in the University’s Jesuit and Catholic mission, these efforts draw on notions of “moral memory” – the collective and moral act of remembering – and “metanoia” – a process of individual and community-based change, spiritual transformation, and renewal.

Institutional Black History Subcommittee (Academic Year 2021-2022):

Julie Schumacher Cohen (Chair), Assistant Vice President for Community Engagement & Government Affairs
Peter Anderson, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Marketing
Ravenne Cooper, Class of 2022
Koebe Diaz, Black Student Union Officer, Class of 2022
David Dzurec, Ph.D., Associate Dean, College of Arts and Sciences, and Interim Executive Director of Slattery Center for the Humanities
Colleen Farry, Assistant Professor, Digital Services Librarian, Weinberg Memorial Library
Elizabeth M. Garcia, Esq., Special Assistant to the President, Executive Director for the Office of Equity & Diversity, and Title IX Coordinator
Nicole Hoskins, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Theology/Religious Studies
Aiala Levy, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of History, Latin American Studies, and Women’s and Gender Studies
Michelle Maldonado, Ph.D., Dean, College of Arts and Sciences
Ian O’Hara, Assistant Professor, Research and Instruction Librarian, Weinberg Memorial Library

Contributors: Glynis Johns (Founder and CEO of the Black Scranton Project), Jackson Feiner (Class of 2025), and Olivia Stemkowski (Class of 2022).



During the 2022 spring semester, the subcommittee, in collaboration with other University offices, provided three presentations to the University community:

"Jesuits and Slavery: A History in Search of Understanding," presented by Rev. David Collins, S.J., Haub Director of Catholic Studies and Associate Professor of History, Georgetown University, February 15, 2022. Link to recording (Access via the My.Scranton portal).

Annual Ellacuría Initiative's Teach-In for Racial Justice, “Re-Membering Blackness: History as a Call to Action,” presented by subcommittee members, March 29, 2022. Link to Presentation Slides.

Lunch & Learn Presentation: “Re-Membering Blackness at The University of Scranton: History as a Call to Action," presented by subcommittee members. Co-sponsored by The University of Scranton Jesuit Center, Office of Equity and Diversity, Council on Diversity and Inclusion’s Institutional Black History subcommittee, and Office of Community Relations, April 28, 2022. Link to recording.


Jesuit Higher Education Context & Black History

The University of Scranton’s subcommittee was inspired by the AJCU’s “Eyes to See” 2021 Anti-Racism Examen for Jesuit Colleges and Universities that includes recommendations related to how Jesuit institutions should share and reflect on their “racial story” as part of efforts to advance anti-racism.

The 2021 Characteristics of Jesuit Higher Education guide also recommends as part of a University’s diversity, equity and inclusion efforts that “It is important to speak the truth about the University’s and Church’s history, with respect to racism.”


Jesuits and Slavery

The historical work of our campus has been also informed by research and reflection taking place at other Jesuit institutions. To learn more, see Rothman, A. (2020). The Jesuits and Slavery, Journal of Jesuit Studies, 8(1), 1-10. doi: https://doi.org/10.1163/22141332-0801P001.

You can also visit the Georgetown Slavery Archive here. Their project is part of Georgetown University’s Slavery, Memory, and Reconciliation initiative.

About the Archive

You can search the archive on the University's Black history under the Browse section. It includes a curated collection of materials from The University of Scranton Archives and newspaper clippings from local publications.  This archive is by no means a comprehensive representation of the Black experience at The University of Scranton. 

Digital Archive Support Team in the Weinberg Memorial Library:

Colleen Farry, Assistant Professor, Digital Services Librarian
Jennifer Galas, Library Systems Developer & Coordinator, Digital Services Web Developer
David Hunisch, Digital Services Assistant
Michael Knies, Professor, University Archivist/Special Collections Librarian

Many thanks to Times Shamrock Communications for permitting the inclusion of historical newspaper clippings from their publications in the archive.

Harmful Content

The University of Scranton Archives makes the historical materials in this online archive publicly available. These materials were created either by University members or, in the case of newspaper clippings, by individuals or entities not affiliated with The University. The materials in this collection reflect a variety of viewpoints on social, political, and intellectual issues of the past and recent present. Some of the materials contain negative and/or discriminatory stereotypes, language, or symbols aimed at individuals or groups based on race, ethnicity, gender, social class, or religion, etc. The University of Scranton Archives does not condone these viewpoints, and we recognize that this material may be emotionally triggering.

We make these materials available to the community, without redaction or abridgment, to avoid altering or suppressing the historical record. We believe that providing access to and supporting engagement with historical documents, including those that may be offensive, is critical for understanding history. We hope that, by sharing this history, we can amplify previously silenced voices and advance racial inclusion and equity on our campus.

Takedown Policy

The University of Scranton Archives seeks to act responsibly and mitigate legal risk in providing online public access to materials. However, despite our best intentions in the publication of digital materials, we recognize that mistakes do occur. Please contact us directly if you think materials may violate your copyright ownership or privacy rights. We take all such reports seriously.

Student Projects

Undergraduate student research on the Black history of The University of Scranton has been conducted by students of HIST 190 Digital History.  You can explore their final projects here.