Universities Studying Slavery (USS) is a consortium of over ninety institutions of higher learning in the United States, Canada, Colombia, Scotland, Ireland, and England. These schools are focused on sharing best practices and guiding principles as they engage in truth-telling educational projects focused on human bondage and the legacies of racism in their histories.
This collective was created by the University of Virginia President’s Commission on Slavery and the University (PCSU) both to ensure that UVA’s important work would spread beyond Virginia and to respond to the calls for guidance from other schools. Since 2016, UVA has boldly led this growing movement, positioning the university as an internationally recognized center of educational leadership and excellence in the field.
Member schools are all committed to research, acknowledgment, and atonement regarding institutional ties to the slave trade, to enslavement on campus or abroad, and to enduring racism in school history and practice.
USS has a broad vision for international, multi-institutional collaboration:
• Mentor and educate schools embarking on projects coming to terms with difficult history.
• Educate generations of university students and a global public in innovative ways about the legacies of slavery and racism as historically significant shapers of the modern world.
• Promote collaboration among institutions examining histories of slavery and racism.
• Promote reconciliation practices as institutions seek to move beyond acknowledgement and atonement to working towards equity in the present.
• Create and sustain multi-university collaborations addressing systemic reconciliation and repair.
USS hosts semi-annual free and public conferences to discuss strategies, collaborate on research, and learn from one another.
Current Member Institutions:
The Citadel (South Carolina)
College of Charleston
College of William & Mary (Lemon Project)
Dalhousie University (Canada)
James Madison University
Liverpool John Moores University (United Kingdom)
Morgan State University
Norfolk State University
Rutgers University Scarlet & Black Project
Saint Louis University
Salem Academy and College
Sweet Briar College
Trinity College (Connecticut)
University College Cork (Ireland)
University of Cincinnati
University of Glasgow
University of King’s College (Canada)
University of Liverpool
University of Mississippi
University of Richmond
University of South Carolina
University of the South (Sewanee)
University of Virginia (PCSU)
University of Warwick
Virginia Commonwealth University
Virginia Military Institute
Virginia State University
Wake Forest University
Washington & Lee University
Wesleyan College (Georgia)
If your institution is interested in joining the conversation, please contact Ashley Schmidt, Ph.D., at firstname.lastname@example.org.
To learn more about the many schools that have joined Universities Studying Slavery, please click on the “News” link above. You can find each announcement story in chronological order there.