Black Graduation Fund

The Black Graduation Fund

Thank you for supporting Black Graduation! For over forty years, the Department of African American Studies has hosted Black Graduation: a celebration of students earning degrees from our department (B.S., M.S., and Ph.D.) and students from all across Berkeley’s campus. Black Grad inspires and uplifts the campus community by celebrating the achievements of scholars of Black Studies, Black/African/African American-identifying students at Berkeley, and their allies in the pursuit of racial equality in higher education. Students who participate in the celebration include those who have successfully completed undergraduate, master’s, Ph.D., J.D., and/or professional degree programs at Berkeley.

“As an undergraduate, even prior to my own chance to walk the stage as a senior, attending Black Graduation was a highlight of the academic year.”

— Brandi Catanese, Associate Professor of African and African American Studies and Theater, Dance, and Performance Studies Class of ’95

Your gift makes a difference

Black Graduation is an annual, campus-wide ceremony. This joyous event has historical roots and cultural importance dating from the inception of the African American Studies Program in the 1970s and has been a “holy grail” for Black/African/African American students and their allies during their Berkeley careers.

The Black Graduation Fund, which is housed within the department of African American Studies, supports the programmatic and logistical costs associated with this event, enabling the department to host a graduation ceremony for students at no charge to them, and to invite their families and guests, at a minimal charge. Make a gift to support the celebration of the accomplishments of our graduating students.  

“Berkeley’s Black graduation was an amazing affirmation of a community’s triumph. The crowd cheered with pride and hope for all of the graduates as if each person was a family member or friend. It was by far the most joyous and enjoyable graduation ceremony I have ever been a part of and I was truly grateful for the experience.” 

— Karolyn Tyson, Professor and Chair of Sociology, Georgetown University, MA and PhD in Sociology at UC-Berkeley

UC-Berkeley Non-Discrimination Disclosure: UC Berkeley is committed to diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging. Black Graduation prohibits discrimination against qualified individuals based on their status as protected veterans or individuals with disabilities, and prohibits discrimination against all individuals based on their race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, or national origin.