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1970 Black Studies Program Approved, Director Appointed

In April, Clement Cottingham, Jr. is appointed to teach two courses as well as administer the Black Studies Program, adopted in the 1969-70 academic year. Cottingham earned a B.A. from Lincoln University, an M.P.A. from UCLA, and a Ph.D. in political science from UC-Berkeley. New courses added to the curriculum include Black Literature, Economics of the Black Community, a two-semester course on Afro-American History, Politics of the Urban Ghetto, Black Theology, and African Modernization.

In May, Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist James Michener '29 donates $100,000 for the new program as well as initiatives meant to improve race relations. Michener said at the time that he hoped that "Swarthmore College – blacks and whites together – will continue to explore the program in Black studies, to develop an adequate program for a Black cultural center that will encourage people of all races to participate, and to explore the most effective kinds of pre- and post-enrollment support program."

In 1973, Cottingham left Swarthmore to accept a position at the University of Pennsylvania. SASS members and others continued to advocate for a Black Studies department and major.