Alumni College – Before the Anti-Racist Movement there was Black Studies with Dr. Tomarra Adams, Dean of Undergraduate Education, and Dr. Ricky Jones, Chair of Pan-African Studies at University of Louisville
The Free Speech, Civil Rights, Black Power, and Anti-War Movements all converged to give rise to the establishment of Black Studies. This session, co-presented with Dr. Ricky Jones, provides an historical overview of the establishment of Black Studies and its evolution within predominantly White institutions, its commitment to and impact within higher education and the larger community. Understanding the ongoing struggles with racism and violence against Blacks in America, there is a resurgence in the importance for the discipline and the role it plays on meaningful social change. Let’s explore the footprint of engaging in a curriculum grounded in anti-racist theory and practices for nearly 50 years.
Dr. Tomarra Adams grew up as the youngest of four and raised by a strong single mother in Hopkinsville, KY. She attended the University of Louisville on the Woodford Porter Scholarship. From the University of Louisville, she received her B.A. in Psychology with a minor in Pan-African Studies, her Master of Science and doctorate in Social Work. She has a post-graduate certificate from Bellarmine University in Advanced Psychotherapy. She is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker with experience in working with survivors of domestic and sexual violence, grief and loss, depression, identity formation, and relationship issues. She now serves as Dean of Undergraduate Education at Spalding University and Associate Professor in African American Studies and Social Work.
Raised by his grandmother in Atlanta’s Carver Homes housing project, Dr. Ricky L. Jones not only became the first member of his immediate family to graduate high school, but by age 28 he also earned a Ph.D. Currently, he is Professor and Chair of the University of Louisville’s Department of Pan-African Studies. Jones was educated as an undergraduate at the United States Naval Academy and Morehouse College. He was only the second African American to receive a Ph.D. in Political Science from the University of Kentucky where he specialized in Political Philosophy and Comparative Politics.