Upperman African American Cultural Center



Africana Lecture and
Film Series
Art Exhibits Sankofa Programming
Special Events and
Signature Programs Excellence Project
Black Fridays Get Lit

Click here for a .pdf version of the calendar.

All events free and open to the public unless otherwise stated

August 2019

18 | Icons Living: Road To Sankofa 
6:00 p.m., Madeline Suites

The Road to Sankofa program welcomes you and your family to the UNCW family. This program introduces you to the Upperman African American Cultural Center and the great legacy of the African American presence at UNCW. Join members of the UNCW faculty and administration, student leaders and other distinguished guests for this important UNCW tradition.


23 | The Launch: Open House
11:30 a.m., Azalea Coast Room

Join us for our annual Open House which invites all constituents into the center for an afternoon of fun, fellowship, and culture! Come meet the staff of our center as well as our organizations' student leaders to find out how you can get involved and make the most of your UNCW experience!


25 | Mentee/Mentor Bowling
2-5 p.m., Ten Pin Alley

The Excellence Project, Upperman's signature mentoring program, gets rolling with its opening event: A fun bonding afternoon of bowling with mentors and mentees!

September 2019

4 | Test Taking: How To Finesse an A
12-2 p.m. Upperman Center

Whether a freshman or a super senior, tests can feel overwhelming and not showcase our brilliance. As such, it's time to UPPgrade your skills! Drop in to learn the best study habits, testing techniques and resources available to students on campus.


12 | Black H(a)eir Exposition
p.m. Upperman Center

What if Black hair was truly a crown?

Upperman is proud to host a solo student show on Black hair!  Donny Durham's “Black H(a)eir Exposition” is provocative, interesting, confrontational, and deeply moving. We hope that audiences will consider identity, difference and nuance as Donny’s images seek to highlight our very own students.  The exhibit fits “neatly” into our year on fashion, aesthetics and cultural production.  To that end, we hope that you will take in every image, imagine the beauty of every student featured in the exhibit, and re-evaluate how you understand your own hair (or lack of) in this engaging exhibit.

13 | Textured
12-3 p.m., Upperman Center
Whether your dark or fair, make sure you are here this Black Friday, cause we're talking bout your beautiful hair! Enjoy a day inspired by the beautiful textures we walk around with and get ready to learn how creating beard oils, your own hair care products, and everything in between!
17 | When To Know A Class Isn't Good For You
6 p.m., Upperman Center
College is a time of exploration, and sometimes that means making a few mistakes. Get equipped with the tools to recognize when you might be in the wrong class, have the wrong schedule, or even may not be the best major for you!
24 | Tarana Burke Lecture
7 p.m. Burney Center
The simple yet courageous #metoo hashtag campaign has emerged as a rallying cry for people everywhere who have survived sexual assault and sexual harassment – and Tarana’s powerful, poignant story as creator of what is now an international movement that supports survivors will move, uplift, and inspire you.

October 2019

2 | Building A Wardrobe On A Budget
12 p.m., Upperman Center

Present the best version of YOU for every professional setting by learning how to dress for interviews and professional events. Looking the part is one of the first steps to land that new job or to make valuable networking contacts. So make sure you come out to UPPgrade your wardrobe!

15 | Deeper DIVE Into Your True Colors
6:00 p.m., Upperman Center

True Colors is a fun and insightful personality-identification system designed to uncover key social information about yourself and others while fostering an environment of understanding and collaboration. We're diving into our colors (colors, colors...) as we explore how we interact and interface with with the world.

17 | Noire: A Black Poetry Day Salon
5:30 p.m., Madeline Suite
Join Upperman in celebration of Black Poetry Day for "Noire: A Black Poetry Day Salon." Get ready for an evening of upscale poetry from student, and professional poets, including NC own's Bull City Slam! RSVP here by September 17.
23-25 | The SymPOSEium

Upperman, Centro Hispano and the LGBTQIA Resource Office are collaborating for a legendary celebration and exploration of Black and Brown Queer Culture in our three day program entitled: 'The SymPOSEium' From the history and social context of ball culture, to voguing workshops and performances, QPOC student, staff and faculty mixers, the SymPOSEium seeks to highlight and uplift the intersections in all our communities!

25 | Life's a Ball
12-3p.m., Upperman
Psssttt...You've been invited to the ball! Learn about the complex and joyous history of ball culture and come prepared to strut your stuff in the Center as you learn voguing, runway walking and more! A part of the OIDI SymPOSEium.

November 2019

3 | Jazzmeia Horn Performance
3PM., Kenan Auditorium
Jazz vocalist extraordinaire Jazzmeia Horn has a name that speaks for itself, capturing the very essence of her art. In 2015, Jazzmeia Horn strode onto the stage of the Thelonious Monk International Jazz Competition and left a panel of esteemed judges slack-jawed in astonishment. Horn’s victory launched her career as one of the world’s most daring young singers in any style. On her GRAMMY-nominated 2017 debut, A Social Call, Horn recalls the likes of Nina Simone and Betty Carter as she serenades and scats through an unapologetically urgent, political take on jazz. She lambasts social structures that have kept people poor, attaches gospel standards to Coltrane themes, and renders ballads with frank poignancy. A student of past masters, Horn is a brave new voice for jazz’s vocal resurgence and a mighty clarion for its future.
6 | Ettiquette Dinner
6:30-8:30 p.m., Circa 1922
Knowing basic dining etiquette can assist you in an interview or business meeting conducted over a meal. Join the Upperman Center for an interactive workshop and dinner while we provide you with the tools necessary for proper dining etiquette and give insights and practical tips about what networking is and how to tap into the power of networking.
12 | Unmasking What Lies Beneath: A Deep Dive Into Anxiety
6 p.m., Upperman Center
Anxiety can affect all of us in different ways, and for many, the new and unexpected experiences of college can reveal or exacerbate these triggers. Join Upperman and the Counseling Center as we seek to understand the the roots of anxiety, and how we manage our specific types.
13 | Get Lit: Quicksand
6-8 p.m., Randall Library Auditorium
Get Lit is back! Join Upperman and the English Department for an conversation around Nella Larsen's seminal work Quicksand; an exploration of cross-cultural and interracial themes such as class, race, gender and passing. Co-sponsored by the UNCW English Department.

22 | Picture Perfect
12-3 p.m., Upperman

Bring your camera and your eye to this photogenic Black Friday! Explore black photography history and get the best tips on the techniques for photography, mobile photography, and how to photograph Black skin.

December 2019

4 | 13th Annual Pre-Kwanzaa Celebration/Fall Sankofa
7:00 p.m., Warwick Ballroom
In the spirit and history of African-Americans merging West African Traditions, we've got a Upperman merger! Join us for our 13th Annual Pre-Kwanzaa Celebration and Fall Senior Sankofa ceremony! Come learn about the Ngozu Saba (7 Principles of Kwanzaa) support local student artists, paint your own adrinka symbol and celebrate our graduating African-American students and hear from our renowed artist and speaker, Willa Brigham!

Archived Events