Black History Month: Events at McMaster

A while circle laid over a colourful circle, with text that reads

February is Black History Month (BHM),  a time to celebrate the contributions and achievements of Black, Caribbean and African diasporic peoples.

The Black History Month Planning Committee and partners across the university are holding virtual and in-person events throughout the month.

Please check back here as more events are added over the coming days and weeks.

Week 1: Jan. 31 to Feb. 4


Black History Month: Door Decorating

Date: January 31, 2024
Time: 4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.
Location: PGCLL 201 (Student Wellness Lounge)

Event OrganizersBlack X Scape, SWC Counsellor Glenda van der Leeuw and BSSC Counsellor Ola Kuforiji (Student Wellness Centre & Black Student Success Centre) 

Decorate the doors of the Student Wellness Centre for Black History Month! This art-making and decorating session is for Black students looking to express themselves, build community, and engage with the Student Wellness Centre in an intimate context. Hosted by our student-led peer support group Black X Scape. 

The Arts: Resistance and Healing (BHM Launch)

Date: February 1, 2024
Time: 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Location: MUSC Atrium

Event Organizers: Equity and Inclusion Office, Black Student Success Centre, Student Affairs

Join us in celebrating the first day of Black History Month with music, mingling with colleagues, and vendors! This year, we will be having artists showcase their talents through a series of performances that commemorate resistance and healing. 

Hamilton Black History Month Launch

Date: February 1, 2024
Time: 12 pm to 2:30 pm
Location: Hamilton City Hall, Council Chambers (2nd Floor)

Registration: Click here

Event Organizers: Hamilton Black History Council

Hamilton Black History Council, in partnership with Black-led orgs and the City of Hamilton, invites you to the Annual Hamilton Black History Month Launch. This kick-off takes place on February 1 at 12:00 pm at City Hall, Council Chambers.

Join us for the City’s unveiling of the 17th Black History Month honouree through the “We are Hamilton – Black History Remembered” initiative.

Learn More and Register

Black Student Association BHM Kickoff Sticker Sale

Date: February 1, 2024
Time: 10:00 am to 3:00 pm
Location: MUSC Atrium

Event Organizers: Black Student Association

A BSA Sticker Sale offering new designs and limited-edition Black History Month Stickers! 

MacAfricans ‘Small Chops’ Bake Sale

Date: February 1, 2024
Time: 12:00 pm to 5:00 pm
Location: Outside of Starbucks in MUSC

Event Organizers: McMaster African Student Association (MacAfricans)

Join us during the Black History Month Kickoff in MUSC to indulge in some of the continent’s tastiest finger foods! We will be selling Samosas, Puff Puff and Meat pies

‘Saturday Church’ Movie Night

Date: February 1, 2024
Time: 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm
Location: TBD

Event Organizers: MSU Pride Community Centre

Join us for a screening of the heartfelt movie musical Saturday Church, which follows the life of a Black queer teenager who finds community and comfort in his local ballroom scene. Open only to 2STLGBQIA+ BIPOC. 

A look ahead: Black History Month launch will celebrate resistance and healing

Week 2: Feb. 5 to Feb. 11


Africa and Black Diaspora Studies Seminar Series 2023-2024: An Interdisciplinary Exploration of Race and Data Collection

Date: February 7, 2024
Time: 4:00 pm to 6:00 pm
Location:  LRW 5803 Sparks CoLAB

Event Organizers: African and Caribbean Faculty Association of McMaster and African and Black Diasporas Studies

Registration: Click here

Join the African Caribbean Faculty Association of McMaster (ACFAM) for the Africa and Black Diaspora Studies (ABLD) Seminar Series 2023-2024. A captivating seminar series featuring esteemed scholars from McMaster University. Our third seminar, An Interdisciplinary Exploration of Race and Data Collection, features insights from McMaster professors Dr. Abel Chikanda, Dr. Juliet Daniel, and Dr. Lawrence Mbuagbaw.

Black Jeopardy w/ Engineering and Science

Date: February 7, 2024
Time: 5:30 pm to 7:30 pm
Location: BSB (tbd)

Event Organizers: Aaron Parry – EDII office, Faculty of Science; Jodi Buckley – Recruitment, Faculty of Engineering 

Students are invited to a night of community and competitive trivia. With questions focused on Black history and STEM topics, students will have the chance to win various prizes! 

Durag Social Games Night

Date: February 7, 2024
Time: 6:00 pm
Location: TBD

Event Organizers: MacAfricans, in collaboration with Black Student Association (BSA) and Midnight Association 

MacAfricans will be hosting their annual Durag Social Games Night. Wear your bonnets, durags, and comfortable clothes, as we play competitive, high-engagement games, as well as introduce the community to some traditional African games as well. 

IGM Financial Celebrates Black History Month

Date: February 7, 2024
Time: 5:30 pm to 8:00 pm
Location: Bay St. Suite 2100, Toronto.

Event Organizers: Employer Partner IGM Financial/ The Student Success Centre 

In honor of Black History Month, IGM Financial will to host the fourth annual campus networking event at their Toronto Office. Join this engaging conversation with a young leader, committed to giving back and fostering positive change. Exploring the importance of building mentorship relationships and the support allies can provide. The Student Success Centre will reimburse transportation expenses for students that attend this networking event.

Click here for more details and registration 

NSBE’s Afro Future Day

Date: February 10, 2024
Time: 12:00 pm to 2:00 pm EST
Location: LRW 2001/Online

Event Organizers: National Society of Black Engineers McMaster

NSBE’s Pre-Collegiate Initiatives team invites Mac’s STEM students and graduating Black high schoolers within the GTHA to a basketball tournament and workshop day. Students will get a chance to explore campus, celebrate Black history in STEM, and enjoy some friendly competition with current Black Mac students for a fun and educational BHM celebration. Afro-Future Day is part of NSBEMac’s brand new Afro-Future STEM Mentorship program targeted at graduating black high schoolers in the GTHA with an interest in STEM. During the workshop, expect a hands-on creative portion to target culturally relevant, sustainable solutions, with an engineering twist to get the creative juices flowing.

Check out @NSBEMac for details on the program 

Week 3: February 12 to February 18



Date: February 12, 2024
Time: 5:30 pm to 8:00 pm
Location: TBD

Event Organizers: Blackspace

“Join us for Lovespace, a special event crafted for Black students to come together in a relaxed and welcoming atmosphere. Mingle, enjoy delightful refreshments, and make meaningful connections. It’s a perfect opportunity to meet new friends, embrace the Valentine’s spirit, and celebrate the joy of community. We can’t wait to see you there!” 

A Conversation with Dr. Michele Johnson

Date: February 13, 2024
Time: 1:30 pm
Location: DSB 505

Event Organizers: African and Black Diaspora Studies & Centre for Human Rights and Restorative Justice

Registration: Click here

Join us for a fascinating conversation. Dr. Juanita De Barros and Matthew Monrose will talk to Dr. Michele Johnson about her research on the history of the Caribbean and the African diaspora and her important new co-edited publication, Unsettling the Great White North: Black Canadian History (University of Toronto Press, 2022) 

Periphery Film viewing with Jewish Ethiopian Cooking

Date: February 13, 2024
Time: 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm
Location: TSH B112

Event Organizers: Hillel McMaster

Learn about the experience of different Jewish communities from around the world in the film, Periphery. Following the film there will be a cooking discussion of Ethiopian Jewish Cuisine

Algoma University Black History Month Virtual Keynote Speaker Event: Dr. Barrington Walker, Vice-Provost, Equity and Inclusion at McMaster University

Date: February 15, 2024
Time: 11:30 am to 1:00 pm
Location: Zoom

Event Organizers: Algoma University 

Registration: Click here

Barrington Walker, Ph.D. holds a doctoral degree in Canadian History from the University of Toronto (Canada) and is Vice Provost Equity and Inclusion and Professor of History at McMaster University.

The Global Reach of the Wu-Tang Clan: Translating Across Race, Religion, and Culture

Date: February 15, 2024
Time: 4:30 pm to 6:00 pm
Location: Hybrid GH 110

Event Organizers:  The Spiritual Care and Learning Centre and the Interfaith Issues Working Group of the President’s Advisory Committee for Building an Inclusive Community (PACBIC) are sponsors of this event. 

Registration: Click here

This will be a hybrid (in-person and virtual) event. Dr. Marcus Evans, a recent McMaster PhD graduate, will present a talk on the impact of the Wu-Tang Clan on race and culture reflecting the impact of spirituality. Some of the music of the WTC will be played as part of the presentation and there will be an opportunity for Q&A. Refreshments for those in person. 

Black @ Mac Eng: Cultivating Community

Date: February 15, 2024
Time: 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm
Location: Alumni Hall

Event Organizers: Faculty of Engineering 

Come celebrate and recognize the contributions of Black students, staff, faculty and alumni toward building a community of excellence in engineering at Black @ Mac Eng: Cultivating Community. This event is free and open to anyone at McMaster.

Registration link

Black History Month Basketball Game

Date: February 16, 2024
Time: 6:00 pm to 10 pm
Location: DBAC

Event Organizers: Black Student Athletic Council, Athletics and Recreation 

BSAC will be integrating aspects of Black culture into a varsity basketball game, providing an enriching and enjoyable experience for spectators. 

Week 4: Feb. 19 to Feb. 25


From Racism to Anti-Racism – Examining the Past and Designing the Future of Medicine in Canada

Date: February 20, 2024
Time: 4:00 pm to 5:00 pm
Location:  Zoom

Event Organizers:  Faculty of Heath Sciences Equity & Inclusion and Faculty Affairs 

Kannin Osei-Tutu will explore the historical, current, and future aspects of anti-Black racism in medical education and training in Canada. As the Senior Associate Dean of Health Equity & Systems Transformation, his insights promise to provide valuable perspectives on the critical journey toward building a more inclusive medical landscape.

Click here for information and to register

Celebrating Black Joy Through Togetherness

Date: February 21, 2024
Time: 5:00 pm to 7:30 pm
Location: Hamilton Central Library

Event Organizers: Together We Rise (Black Justice Program in the Hamilton Community Legal Clinic)

A night of food, music, performances and art to celebrate Black History Month and discuss emerging community issues and goals in Hamilton.

Click here for more information

Healing narratives: Black History Month Storytellers’ Symposium

Date: February 22, 2024
Time: 8:30 am to 10:30 am EST
Location: Hybrid – David Braley Health Sciences Building

Event Organizers: Department of Family Medicine 

This inspiring hybrid artistic symposium will feature a diverse array of artists and storytellers who will delve into topics such as Black health, healing, community organizing, resistance, mental health, and more. Experience the healing power of storytelling as we explore various art forms, including poetry, music, steelpan, spoken words and performances that will inspire, educate, and foster meaningful dialogue. The event will also include a breakfast buffet, showcasing the richness of Black food to be served from 8 a.m. -8:30 a.m.

Click here for information and to register

28th Annual Reverend John C. Holland Awards

Date: February 24, 2024
Time: 5:30 pm
Location: Liuna Station

Event Organizers: Hamilton Black History Month Council

Join us for the 28th Annual Reverend John C. Holland Awards!

Prepare for an unforgettable night filled with inspiring stories, heartfelt speeches, and a sense of unity as we celebrate Black history, heritage, and excellence at the 28th Annual Reverend John C. Holland Awards Gala.

Hosted by the Hamilton Black History Council, this event is a chance for all Hamiltonians to come together and celebrate the remarkable achievements of people of African descent who have made a positive impact in our community.

Click here to register

Week 5: Feb. 26 to March 3


Continent to Diaspora: Home to Here

Date: February 26, 2024
Time: 12:00 pm
Location:   Sherman Centre, Mills Library

Event Organizers:  McMaster University Libraries 

A selection of readings by McMaster staff and faculty, including some seminal works of the Diaspora including Africa, Canada, the Caribbean and the United States.

Click here for more information  

Elevate and Empower: A Networking Event for Black Students

Date: February 27, 2024
Time: 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm
Location:  Alumni Memorial Hall

Event Organizers:  McMaster Black Student Association in collaboration with the McMaster Alumni Office

“Elevate and Empower” will be a distinguished gathering, featuring a panel of esteemed Black alumni who have not only excelled in their respective fields but have also made significant contributions to their communities. The event will encompass a combination of inspiring panel discussions and networking opportunities, creating a holistic experience for both our alumni and current students. This event will serve as a testament to the strength, resilience, and success of Black individuals within the McMaster community. 

What is Intersectionality?: Black Intersectionality Unveiled

Date: February 28, 2024
Time: 12:00 pm to 1:00 pm
Location: Online

Event Organizers: De Groote School of Business;

Facilitator: Eve Nyambiya, Anti-Black Racism Education and Programs Coordinator 

This virtual lunch and learn session for School of Business staff and faculty will define social identity and social location, intersectionality, anti-black racism, and bring it all together to make connections between Blackness and intersectionality and why it is important for us to consider it our work and personal relationships. 

Email to register

Durag Social: Mood/Vision Board Night

Date: February 28, 2024
Time: 6:00 pm
Location: TBD

Event Organizers: MacAfricans, in collaboration with BlackSpace 

In continuation from our previousDurag Social event, we will be hosting a mood/vision board night. Wear your comfy clothes and create a vision board for the goals you want to achieve this year. It is a great way to mingle with friends, and also meet people who may have similar goals to you! 

UTS EDI Committee Black History Month Book Club

Date: February 29, 2024
Time: 3:00 pm to 4:30 pm
Location: BSB 240 A

Event Organizers: University Technology Services EDI Committee 

The UTS EDI Committee Black History Month Book Club will dive into compelling narratives and thought-provoking discussions, exploring the rich tapestry of Black history, culture, and resilience. Together, we honour the past, embrace the present, and envision an inclusive future. 

Industry Professionals Engagement Night

Date: February 29, 2024
Time: 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm
Location: TBD

Event Organizers: Black Student Success Centre 

A networking event organized for black professionals (alumni and non-alumni) in STEM and other industries to connect with black undergrads and provide information on how to navigate different career paths after graduation.