Week 2: The 1960s with Bill Hurd, Ben Finley, and Percy Pierre

Week 2: The 1960s with Bill Hurd, Ben Finley, and Percy Pierre

Welcome to week 2 of Shared Reading Experience - Black Domers: African-American Students at Notre Dame in Their Own Words. Corey discusses the 60s with Bill Hurd, Ben Finley, and Percy Pierre. This week's reading is chapter 2 of the book.

The 1960s

View the Event: Exploring Racial and Social Injustice and Inequality in America

The event on October 13, 2020, featured leading scholars discussing the history, root causes, and modern-day implications of social and racial injustice in America, with the goal of promoting change through greater understanding of these issues.

The event was presented by the Office of the Provost, in partnership with the Klau Center for Civil and Human Rights, and the Rooney Center for the Study of American Democracy.  Speakers include Notre Dame Professors Veronica Root Martinez, David Hooker, and Jim Sullivan.

Read more about the event and speakers here.

Campus Policing

Black @ ND is a talk show that will discuss the experiences, successes, and challenges of the University of Notre Dame’s African American students, current and alumni, and the steps taken to survive in a community that lacks representation of color. It is our job to discuss the difficult topics and have honest perspectives followed by ways of improvement with aims to build a better community. For today’s topic, host Emorja Roberson ’17 is joined by Police Chief Keri Kei Shibata.

On September 16, 2020, the Notre Dame Police Department issued an equity in policing report.

Shaping History

The sculptor who turned the social movement of his time into art

Kelly Nola
Scholars gather around the flame of knowledge in a replica Hayden created for Percy Pierre when his friend became president of Prairie View A&M.

Frank Hayden’s art was of its time and timeless, attuned to current events and to eternity. Closely associated with the civil rights movement, he created sculptures in honor of those who bore the crosses of that struggle, as well as actual Church-commissioned crucifixes — an American Black Catholic artist in a time of civil and spiritual unrest.

Above all the labels that could be affixed to him, Hayden ’59MFA defined himself first and foremost as a sculptor. Sometimes, his friend Percy Pierre ’61, ’63M.S. relates, Hayden wished he could live in a hole away from the distractions of the world, handing up each new piece “to somebody who would take it and give him a loaf of bread, and he’d go back and do his art again.”

Such simplicity forever eluded him. The unavoidable cultural ferment became material, as much as the wood and aluminum, plaster and fiberglass that were his chosen media. As outgoing in personal relationships as he was inward-looking in his artistic imagination, Hayden combined the two impulses, talking and working, working and talking, steeping his art in the issues of the day and the stirrings of his soul.

Among the few Black students on campus in the late 1950s, Hayden and Pierre overlapped at Notre Dame but did not meet during those years. Hayden was getting a master’s degree under celebrated Croatian sculptor Ivan Meštrović and Pierre was an engineering undergraduate. A mutual friend, Leonard Price ’62Ph.D., introduced them in 1963 and Hayden encouraged Pierre to teach at Southern University in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, where the sculptor had begun his own academic career.

Read the full article here.

Originally published by Notre Dame Magazine (Autumn 2020) by Jason Kelly ’95.

Looking for a genuine commitment to diversity

Presented by With Voices True

“You can diversify campus all you want, but if people don’t feel included, we’re not making progress. Diversity is being invited to the party, but inclusion is being asked to dance.” Briana Tucker ’19

Race, Violence, and Protest: A Conversation about the Ongoing Struggle for Justice

Presented by With Voices True


  • David Anderson Hooker, Associate Professor of the Practice of Conflict Transformation and Peacebuilding
  • Ashley Bohrer, Assistant Professor of Gender and Peace Studies
  • Helina Haile ’20Master of Global Affairs, International Peace Concentration Graduate 
  • Ann Mische, Associate Professor of Sociology and Peace Studies
  • Karsonya (Kaye) Wise Whitehead ’93 M.A., Associate Professor of Communication and African and African American Studies at Loyola University Maryland and Host of Today with Dr. Kaye on WEAA in Baltimore

Art for Thought: "Untitled Scorch Work"

Presented by Snite Museum of Art

Learn more about the art work and its artist here.

Willie Cole (American, b. 1955 ), Untitled Scorch Work (Figure), 2013, Scorch drawing on paper, Humana Foundation Endowment for American Art, Snite Museum of Art, University of Notre Dame, 2017.009.002

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