The controversy

The controversy


Opening remarks

History of the Institute of Hispanic/latino cultures

History of the Institute of Hispanic/latino cultures

History of the Institute of black culture

History of the Institute of black culture

Recent Neglect

  • In 2007, the IBC and La Casita acquired donated furniture and computers from the Reitz Union.

  • In January of 2008, Student Government sold old yearbooks as a fundraiser to help revamp the IBC and La Casita.

  • In April of 2008, Student Government canceled their end of the year banquet and donated the funds to buy technology and furniture for the Institutes.

Buildings Condemned



Air and Water Intrusion


Rotting Wood

Leaning Balcony





July 12

Advisory Committee Meetings

May 18

May 25

June 8

June 14

June 28

First Advisory Committee meeting; Discussed roles of advisory committee and core committee.

Second Advisory Committee meeting; Architects went over their design process: visioning sessions, MCDA meetings, etc.

Third Advisory Committee meeting; Architects presented information on the possibility of the two building design vs the U-shaped design.

Fifth Advisory Committee meeting; Discuss survey results and form a recommendation for the Core Committee.

MCDA conducted a webinar explaining the designs. MCDA also released a survey.

May 2017

June 2017

Fourth Advisory Committee meeting; Students presented national threats to modern cultural centers face (eg. dilution, homogenization, closure).

IBC: 2,207

La Casita: 1,846

No Large Assembly Room.

Not up to code.

IBC: 2,513 (+1,000)

La Casita: 2,457 (+1,000)

Includes 2 Large Assembly Rooms, Storage Rooms, and Recreation Rooms (adding 1,000 square feet per institute)

IBC: 2,520

La Casita: 2,520

Loss of Large Assembly Room (125 people), Storage Room, and Recreation Room

Includes Small Assembly Room (estimate of 40 people)

Percentages still need to be adjusted (could gain more program space)


What is the Concern?

The design puts two communities in one building which was not the original intent of the institutes.

Even though the current designs may include art, artifacts, and design aspects that appear to acknowledge individuality, there is a fear that the spaces may be consolidated into a multicultural center in the future. Placing both communities in one building makes such a transition easier for administration in the future.

  • Multicultural complexes decenter and undermine the historical roles that cultural-specific centers carry out (Hefner, 2002).
  • “Proponents of Black Cultural Centers argue that these newer initiatives may be precursors to total elimination of race-specific centers” (Hefner, 2002).
  • A large number of BCC directors and staff members are hesitant to collapse race-specific centers into a single multicultural center:
    • Many directors of Black cultural centers believe this new push is quietly undermining their historical role. In fact, they are worried that Black centers either will be pushed to compromise their African-centered foundations in order to appeal to other ethnic groups or, more ominously, drop the Black title all together and become Multicultural centers. Either way, many directors are putting on their battle armor because they feel under attack (para. 5). Hefner (2002)

What is the Concern?

Open discussion

Open discussion

"The Controversy" Presentation - Google Slides