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Diversity Center
Diversity Programs & Services

Diversity Services

Cultural Programs

Celebration of Diversity

Butler University’s Celebration of Diversity is a comprehensive analysis and recognition of the contributions of African-Americans and other ethnic cultures to American history and society. Promoting ethnic diversity is an integral goal stated in the Butler University Mission Statement. The celebration of diversity, through multicultural interaction and awareness, facilitates a greater appreciation of the inherent complexities and commonalities of our global community.

Celebration of Diversity has become one of the largest multicultural collegiate observances in the Midwest. Program highlights include:

  • Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Luncheon Symposium
  • Celebration of Diversity Distinguished Lecture Series
  • African-American Music Heritage Festival
  • Fall Study Tour
  • Women’s History Month programming
  • Annual student sponsored service projects, educational programs, and events. Popular student events include the Black Student Union's, "Showtime on Sunset" Midwest Collegiate Talent Competition, GospelFest, Unity Ball, and the Campus Style Fashion Show and Cultural Fair

Celebration of Diversity Distinguished Lecture Series

Butler’s Celebration of Diversity Distinguished Lecture Series was implemented in 1988 to provide Butler University and the greater Indianapolis community. The Celebration of Diversity Distinguished Lecture Series promotes ethnic diversity and multicultural awareness through increased interaction with high profile multicultural scholars, dignitaries and personalities.

Past lecturers have included:

  • Dr. Maya Angelou, Inaugural Poet, Author, Actress and Director
  • Carole Simpson, Journalist and Weekend Anchor, ABC Evening News
  • Dr. Joseph Lowery, Civil Rights Activist
  • Spike Lee, Actor and Director
  • Dr. Joycelyn Elders, Surgeon General of the United States
  • Kimberly Aiken, Miss America 1994
  • Dr. Benjamin Chavis, Civil Rights Activist
  • Dr. Makiziwe (Maki) Mandela, Educator and daughter of Nelson Mandela, President of the Republic of South Africa
  • Robert Townsend, Actor, Director and Comedian
  • Dr. Phakamile Gongo, first Black Secretary General of the Embassy of South Africa
  • Dr. Bertice Berry, Award-winning Lecturer, Comedienne, and talk show host
  • Morris Dees, Co-founder and Chief Attorney, Southern Poverty Law Center
  • Myrlie Evers-Williams, Civil Rights Activist and Chairperson of the National Board of Directors of the NAACP