African American Studies

African American Studies Department Menu


300 Jay Street
Library Building 643 (L-643)
Brooklyn, NY 11201

Phone: 718-260-5205

Meet the Chair

Marta Effinger
Library Building (L-643)

Welcome to the African American Studies Department (AFR) at New York City College of Technology. Students in all three schools at City Tech may enroll in AFR courses, which challenge students to think critically about a broad range of topics and issues, including but not limited to, race, gender, class, sexuality, and culture. Our courses and faculty expose students to the complexities of Africana people throughout the world. In our mission statement, we emphasize and recognize:

The African American Studies Department at City Tech is designed to bring into disciplinary focus, through inter-departmental and multicultural course offerings in Liberal Arts and Sciences, the history and culture of Africans and their descendants, throughout the diaspora from antiquity to the present.

The department was set up in 1969, first as a program and five years later, attained departmental status. African American Studies at City Tech is proudly positioned within the larger history of African American Studies on college campuses, whereby activists and scholars challenged the marginalization of African contributions to human heritage and called for changes in curricula and new programs to address these shortcomings.

AFR courses and faculty prepare students to exist in a world where they thoughtfully question, critique, act, motivate, inspire, and challenge. More specifically, the Option in African American Studies (AFR Option) enables Liberal Arts (LAA) students to develop a concentrated area of studies from Humanities, Literature, History/Social Science and Philosophy. The AFR Option may inspire students to earn a degree in African American Studies from another college or university. Individuals with a degree in African American Studies have a wide range of career choices. The discipline may lead to career opportunities in Education, Law, Community Organizing, Policy Planning, Museum Administration, Publishing, Health Administration, Filmmaking, Social Work, Arts Programming, Business, and International Aid Management. Students are encouraged to visit the department and speak to any full-time faculty member about the AFR Option as well as other academic and career opportunities.

The entire City Tech community is invited to take advantage of the exciting programs AFR organizes throughout the academic year, including Black Solidarity Day and Black History Month. I am confident that attendance at our departmental events will highlight the inherent value of African American Studies locally, nationally, and globally.

One Nigerian proverb states: A farmer does not conclude by the mere look of it that a corn is unripe; he/she tears it open for examination.