In A Flash

LSU Board approves creation of African and African American studies department

By: - January 16, 2021 9:00 am

LSU’s Board of Supervisors approved a request Friday day to promote its African and African American program to department status. 

The promotion will give the African and African American studies program more autonomy, more faculty and more resources, Stephen Finley, the director of the African and African American studies program, said.

“Everyone knows when something is a department, the university is committed to that field or discipline,” Finley said.

The promotion to department status will also allow students to work toward a bachelor’s degree in African and African American studies from the department. Before, African and African American studies was just a concentration within a liberal arts degree.

“If I was a student, that would probably make a difference for me,” Finley said. “As well as having a degree from a full department, rather than just a program.”

“And the students have been really supportive, so I know it matters to them,” Finley said.

The next step for creation of the African and African American studies department is approval from the Board of Regents, but “it’s pretty much pro forma,” Finley said.

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JC Canicosa
JC Canicosa

JC Canicosa is a former Louisiana Illuminator reporter. Prior to working with the Illuminator, Canicosa worked for Investigate-TV and The Loyola Maroon. Canicosa earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism from Loyola University New Orleans. At Loyola, he was the senior staff writer at The Maroon and the president of the school's chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists. Off the clock, Canicosa enjoys playing basketball, watching movies and dabbling in comedy writing.