Gwendolyn Brooks Cultural Center

Groups and Organizations

The Gwendolyn Brooks Cultural Center through the coordination and implementation of programs and outreach activities is committed to assisting and supporting African American students in achieving academic success. One of the positive outcomes of participation in activities through the Center is a lifelong friendship. The overall experience enjoyed by the students becomes a vehicle for interaction and dissemination of cultural information. In an attempt to extend the cultural and educational experience beyond the formal classroom, the Center offers students the opportunity to participate in several unique organizations.

African Student Association (ASA)

The African Student Association (ASA) was established in December 1997. The aim of ASA is to promote African culture through various projects, activities, and events on the campus of Western Illinois University and the Macomb community.

Black Male Achievement Network (BMAN)

The Black Male Achievement Network was designed to enrich the experiences of those who identify as African-American male at Western Illinois University. We strategically invest our resources in each scholar by providing opportunities for identity development, social activism, and scholastic achievement.

Black Student Association (BSA)

The Black Student Association founded in 1969, was established to provide a better scholastic, cultural, political and social life for students of color at Western Illinois University. Overall the organization strives to enhance the general welfare of all culturally diverse populations while promoting high scholastic standards and nurtures unity and pride among black students. The Black Student Association office is located in the Gwendolyn Brooks Cultural Center; The BSA General Assembly meets every Monday at 4:30 pm in the University Union.

Black Student Summit (BSS)

The Black Student Summit aims to address the social, cultural, and emotional concerns that Black student might experience at Western Illinois University. We complete these tasks by educating students, faculty, staff and community members on the vital skills needed on campus and in life. We encourage students to become stronger through our annual Black Student Summit that includes inspiring workshops, breakout sessions, and a signature keynote speaker.

Christian Faith Campus Ministry (CFCM)

Christian Faith Campus Ministry (CFCM) has been at Western Illinois University for over 28 years. We are a primarily student-populated, non-denominational, predominantly African American group of anointed young people who are going forth boldly and without hindrance, seeking to serve the Lord our God with our whole hearts, even as David did in his youth. As Paul instructed the young minister, Timothy, I Timothy 4:12, "Let no man despise thy youth, but be thou an example of the believers, in a word, conversation, in charity (love), in spirit, in faith, in purity," so we strive to be. We desire to exemplify all of these things in our lives.

Worship Services are held Sundays at 1:00 pm at Wesley United Methodist Church. The church is located at:

1212 W Calhoun Street
Macomb, IL 61455-1299

Cultural Expressions

Cultural Expressions was established in October of 1997. The poetry group works collaboratively with other campus organizations to promote unity while focusing on diversity and multiculturalism as it relates to the collegiate experience. Cultural Expressions organizes monthly poetry nights that allow participants to express themselves through mediums such as dramatic readings, rap, and dance.

*For meetings dates and times contact the Gwendolyn Brooks Cultural Center

Gwendolyn Brooks Cultural Center Dance Troupe

The Gwendolyn Brooks Cultural Center Dance Troupe, is a dynamically diverse student company that was established in the fall of 1979. The group strives to promote Black Culture through the Art of Dance. The Troupe's repertoire includes, but is not limited to, a vast array of dance styles such as African, Caribbean, ballet, jazz, spiritual, modern, contemporary, hip hop and tap.

Dance Troupe members have opportunities to serve in leadership positions and choreograph dance routines. As choreographers, members have the artistic freedom to create dances that embrace the past, present, and future as it relates to Black heritage and culture. New member auditions are usually held at the beginning of the semester during the second week of school. Practice is held in the Multicultural Center on Tuesday and Thursday at 5:30-9pm.

Heritage Ensemble

Heritage Ensemble was established in the fall of 1979. Membership in the organization provides students with an opportunity to gain experience and skills in areas which include, but are not limited to: fundamental vocal training, diction, breathing techniques, phrasing, and choral directing , in the various forms of African and African American musical genres such as Gospel, Spirituals, Contemporary, Show Tunes, and anthems to name a few. Also, members gain benefits that are educational, cultural, and social. Heritage Ensemble practices on Tuesday and Thursday, 5-6: 30 pm in Multicultural Center.

National Association for the Advancement of Colored People - College Chapter (NAACP)

The College Chapter shall subscribe to the general policies and programs of the Association. The purpose and aims of the college chapter shall be to ensure the political, educational, social, and economic equality of all citizens; to achieve equality of rights and eliminate race prejudice among the citizens of the United States; to remove all barriers of racial discrimination through democratic processes; to seek enactment and enforcement of federal, state and local laws securing civil rights; to inform the public of the adverse effects of racial discrimination and to seek its elimination; to educate persons as to their constitutional rights and to take all lawful action to secure the exercise thereof, and to take any other lawful action in furtherance of these objectives, consistent with the NAACP's Articles of Incorporation and Constitution. In addition, its objects shall be to inform youth of the problems affecting Africans in the Diasporas and other people of color; to stimulate an appreciation of the African American contribution to US civilization; to develop an intelligent and militant youth leadership. These objectives shall be pursued in accordance with the policies of the Association within the framework of the University's regulations. Students may contact the Gwendolyn Brooks Cultural Center for more information.

*You can find more information about any of our groups through the Gwendolyn Brooks Cultural Center Facebook page

National Association of Colored Women's Club (NACWC)

The National Association of Colored Women's Clubs, Inc. is organized and shall be operated exclusively for charitable, religious, and educational purposes including, making distributions to organizations that qualify as exempt organizations. NACWC shall endeavor to: promote interracial understanding, justice and peace among all people; raise the standard of the home and advance the moral, economic, and social and religious welfare of the family; promote the education of women and girls through local, state and regional activities; and foster and protect the constitutionally guaranteed civil rights for all people including the rights of women and children to work and obtain equal opportunity in all areas of employment. The Women of Integrity chapter of National Association of Colored Women's Club focus will be to encourge African-American women the opportunity of reaching the highest levels in all fields of human endeavors of the Macomb community.