Published on September 17, 2013  

Samford University will host students and faculty from Ohio State University and Central State University this week for a special focus on the city’s Civil Rights history.

Samford communication studies professor Grace Anderson said students in her Intercultural Communication course will participate in joint classes and activities with 17 students in Ohio State professor Malcolm Cash’s African American Studies course.

The groups will meet for a joint class at Samford Sept. 19 and tour Birmingham’s Civil Rights sites. On Friday, Sept. 20, the students will hear from and interview the Rev. Carolyn McKinstry. McKinstry, a graduate of Samford’s Beeson Divinity School, escaped by just a few moments the 1963 bombing of Birmingham’s 16th St. Baptist Church.

Anderson said the project originated with a chance encounter at Birmingham Civil Rights Institute in spring 2013. Visiting the institute for a class assignment, her students met Cash when he overheard them talking about how much they were enjoying learning about intercultural communication. He asked them more about their studies, then contacted Anderson to propose the collaboration.

“It is both professor Cash's hope and mine that students will find the process of fellowship and collaboration with those of differing cultures enriching,” Anderson said. “Instead of simply observing multiculturalism, we look forward to practicing multiculturalism as well.”

Samford is a leading Christian university offering undergraduate programs grounded in the liberal arts with an array of nationally recognized graduate and professional schools. Founded in 1841, Samford is the 87th-oldest institution of higher learning in the United States. Samford enrolls 5,791 students from 49 states, Puerto Rico and 16 countries in its 10 academic schools: arts, arts and sciences, business, divinity, education, health professions, law, nursing, pharmacy and public health. Samford fields 17 athletic teams that compete in the tradition-rich Southern Conference and ranks 6th nationally for its Graduation Success Rate among all NCAA Division I schools.