African Studies Center

The African Studies Center is a federally funded National Resource Center housed in the Office of International Studies and Programs at Michigan State University. More than 170 core faculty from 54 departments contribute multidisciplinary expertise in support of the Center's priorities.

We are proud of our legacy of African Studies at MSU, where the study of Africa links classroom learning with global engagement; where academic excellence and social activism go hand in hand; and where our excellent faculty not only carry out cutting edge research but also turn research into practice to address real world challenges.

Jamie Monson

Priorities and Resources of the African Studies Center

Supporting Future Experts

The Center seeks to help prepare the next generation of African experts, whether academicians, policy makers, or applied practitioners, through:

  • Undergraduate, graduate, and certificate programs, as well as minors, specializations, and concentrations offered through many departments at MSU.
  • Collaborations with many units on campus to offer supervised research, study abroad, and internships.

Teaching African Languages

MSU has one of the largest African language programs in the U.S., offering:

  • Beginning to advanced level instruction in 30 African languages, representing all major regions of Africa.
  • Foreign Language and Area Studies (FLAS) fellowships, awarded to students enrolled in a program that combines language study with international development studies.

Disseminating Information to the Public

The Center presents information contextualized to the social, political, and economic dynamics of the African continent, through:

  • Resources for K-12 educators, including the Overcoming Apartheid web resource (
  • The Eye on Africa speaker series, designed for scholars, policy-makers, practitioners, students, and the interested public.
  • The African Tea Time, which provides an opportunity to learn and share about first-hand experiences on the African continent. Open to everyone.

Working with the Community

The Center works with community organizations and partner institutions across Michigan and nationally, offering:

  • Outreach to K-12 educators, community colleges, historically Black colleges and universities, and other higher education classrooms through workshops, summer institutes, collaborative study abroad, and curriculum development.
  • Outreach to business, government, and community organizations, through consultation, seminars, and collaboration on humanitarian projects.

Creating New Knowledge

The Center creates new knowledge through its support of research, print publications, and digital media presentations, including:

  • Serving as the home of MSU's new Alliance for African Partnership (AAP) initiative (see more about AAP).
  • Supporting the Africana Library, which contains over 270,000 print volumes and over 500,000 digital items, placing it in the top three university collections nationally on Sub-Saharan Africa.

For more information:

Jamie Monson

John Metzler
Assistant Director and Outreach Coordinator

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