Five College African Studies Program


Associations and Projects at the Five Colleges

Note: This page is still under construction. To add your organization or project to the list please e-mail the website manager listed at the bottom of this page.

Five College Africa Coalition

On April 11th 2006 a group of students from the Five Colleges gathered at Five College Inc. in Amherst for a discussion about the goals/organization/structure of a Five College Africa related group, an initiative that was baptized “Five College Africa Coalition.”

The students present all endorsed the initiative and expressed their excitement about future activities ranging from fundraising activities to cultural and academic events. The group’s first project is a website which links back to all existing Africa initiatives in the Five College area and mainly serves to create a Five College student community and coordinate Five College events. This website will feature: an Africa News feed, student articles about Africa, student picture albums, blogs for current event discussions, links between students abroad and students in the five colleges and much more.

We hope to launch the website at the beginning of the fall semester. If you would like to be added to our mailing list please e-mail Marcia Schenck at

Engineers Without Borders UMass:

Engineers Without Borders UMass is a student organization dedicated to helping local and international communities create sustainable solutions to improve their quality of life. Current projects include: Kenya Project Potable Drinking Water, Namawanga Village, Western Kenya.

The Mount Holyoke College African and Caribbean Students Association (MHACASA):

MHACASA was formed in January 1993 out of the need for an organization that puts issues of Africa and the Caribbean at the top of the agenda. MHACASA is an organization in which African and Caribbean students can come together and educate one another and the Mount Holyoke community about the place from which they come. In addition the organization makes active efforts to eradicate the stereotypes created by mass media and ignorance.

The Mount Holyoke College Association of Pan-African Unity - (APAU):

APAU, an organization for persons of African descent, plans and implements activities and programs designed to increase awareness of Africa's unique and diverse cultural heritage within the Mount Holyoke and the Five College community. APAU also serves as a support group that facilitates social activities to bring women of color together. APAU's main office is in the Betty Shabazz Cultural Center.

The Smith African and Caribbean Student Association (SASCA):

The Smith African and Caribbean Students Associaton(SACSA), is anorganization dedicated to people of African and Caribbean decent. Members currently include individuals from all continets relating to the African Diaspora. As an organization, we promote awareness of different African and Caribbean issues, events, art, cultures and cuisine. We hold a number of talks and conferences during the year, fund raise, host parties but most importantly we work together to respect and sufficiently represent our different backgrounds in our everyday interactions with the Smith and Five College community.

The University of Massachusetts African Graduate Student and Scholars Association (AGASA):

AGASA was formed in 2001 with the aim of giving guidance and support to registered African Graduate Students and Scholars affiliated with the five colleges in the Pioneer Valley. Amongst other objectives, the association is to network with other organizations on and off campus such as the Graduate Student Senate (GSS), ALANA, and the GEO on issues of mutual interest, strengthen its capacity to serve as a resource on African issues, and to create awareness and advocacy in the university research community and beyond about issues that are pertinent to African development. To guide the conduct of this association, the founding members prepared a constitution which is still operational till date.

UMass African Students Association:

The African Students Association (ASA) is a dynamic group of students, mostly africans, who undertake various activities and cultural events with the goal of promoting awareness of the rich African culture and people. We hope to use this site to further our goals by providing interesting content on the African continent and people, as well as our provide information on
our upcoming events. Please feel free to explore any area on our site and do not hesitate to contact the webmaster, or the members of this group.

Youth Action International (Amherst, Mount Holyoke, Hampshire, and Smith College Chapters):

Youth Action International is a national humanitarian organization dedicated to establishing and implementing programs, providing funds, and facilitating rehabilitation strategies and resources to children affected by war, poverty, and hunger. Youth Action International actively pursues governments, organizations and relevant parties to ensure the promotion of children's, women's and general human rights as enshrined in international conventions.