Several of the African American Studies core faculty members, affiliate faculty members, and advisory board members are members of research teams that have been awarded Intersections Grants from the Mellon Foundation (organized by the Center for the Humanities and Public Sphere).  See the information below and information about each of the four grants

The African American Studies faculty, affiliates, and advisory board members involved in these grants are:

Tanya Saunders, Manoucheka Celeste, Bryce Henson, Ben Hebblethwaite, Paul Ortiz, Nick Vargas, Chris Busey, Agnes Leslie, Stephanie Birch, Katheryn Russell-Brown, Lauren Pearlman, and Sharon Austin.  Sophia Acord and Barbara Mennel of the Center for the Humanities also assisted with these grants.

Dr. Manoucheka Celeste, Assistant Professor of African American Studies and Gender, Women’s Studies, and Sexualities Research, recently won the Diamond Anniversary Book Award from the National Communication Association for her book, Race, Gender, and Citizenship in the African Diaspora: Travelling Blackness (Routledge 2017). This Award is given to “the most outstanding scholarly book published during the previous two years.”  For more information, see 2018 NCA Award Winners.  This book also won the 2017 National Communication Association Outstanding Book Award from the African American Communication & Culture Division and the Black Caucus.  Congratulations Dr. Celeste!

During the 2018 spring break in March, Dr. Sharon Austin accompanied 13 students to Paris for the African Americans in Paris class.  This was the fifth consecutive year the class was offered.  The students watched online lectures, read materials, completed papers, and took an exam before traveling to France.  While there, they listened to lectures and visited several historic sites of significance to African American ex-patriates who fled the U.S. and lived in France to escape American discrimination and injustices.  The students visited the suburban home of the late entertainer Josephine Baker, Versailles Palace, and the Louvre Museum.  They also took a cruise of the River Seine and visited the Eiffel Tower as well as several of the cities’ neighborhoods such as Montmarte and Goutte D’Or.  Many visited Amsterdam, Barcelona, London, and Rome on their free day.  The course will be offered every year during spring break. For more information,visit our website, YouTube page, or contact Dr. Austin at

A picture of Dr. Patricia Hillard with his students

In the fall of 2017, Dr. Patricia Hilliard-Nunn took three African American Studies students, Kayla O’Neal, DeAunte Fox, and Syleena Powell, to the Annual Meeting of the Association of African American Life and History (ASALH) Conference in Cincinnati, Ohio to present their research on a panel entitled “The Implications of Gender and Race in Three Dimensions.”  The title of O’Neal’s paper was “Black Children and Zero Tolerance Policies in Florida’s Schools.  Fox’s paper was entitled “A Content Analysis of Black Male Relationships in the films Get Out, Moonlight, and Fences.”  Finally, the title of Powell’s paper was “The Strong Black Woman Stereotype and Black Female Coping Strategies.”

In March 2018, Tiara Telfair and Jasmyn Sullivan presented research at the National Conference of Black Political Scientists Meeting in Chicago, Illinois.

Dr. Sharon Austin’s third book, The Caribbeanization of Black Politics: Race, Group Consciousness, and Political Participation in America, was published by SUNY, Albany Press in March 2018.  She has also been promoted to the rank of full professor.  You can access some of her articles for The Conversation at the links below.  Congratulations Dr. Austin!


Dr. Vincent Adejumo won a Teacher of the Year Award from the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences during the spring 2018 semester. Dr. Adejumo has been a Lecturer in the UF African American Studies Program since 2015 and had served as a graduate teaching assistant since 2011. He teaches a number of courses including the online version of Introduction to African American Studies, Black Masculinity, Black Wall Street, and The Wire. Congratulations Dr. Vince!