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Policies & Procedures

It is the expectation that all policies and procedures are followed and respected by any individual or organization using the Black House or Multicultural Center (MCC) for formal and informal purposes.


Weekend & After Hours

Although students may remain in the Black House or MCC after hours, it is each student’s responsibility to follow all policies and procedures during weekend and after hours as he or she would during business and evening hours.


Meetings & Events

Students may meet for executive board meetings or general membership meetings during weekend and after hours. However, any large-scale event scheduled during weekend and after hours must be approved by an MSA staff member.



Cleaning After Meetings & Events

It is expected that students will be responsible when using MSA facilities. Reservation privileges for meetings and events are contingent upon the group’s ability to thoroughly clean the room used and throw out trash after the end of a meeting or event. Furniture should be returned to its proper place. Please see the full list of cleaning guidelines below.


Movie Viewings

Advertised movie or film viewings require the purchase of copyright licenses first. Proof of copyright-license acquisition must be presented to an MSA staff member before publicity for the viewing is disseminated.



Alcohol & Other Drugs Policy

Alcohol and other drugs are not allowed in the Black House or MCC at any time for any reason. Any student using alcohol or other drugs in the buildings is subject to any and all University sanctions. Student groups may not host events that involve alcohol at the Black House or MCC. For more information, please see the University Policy on Drugs and Alcohol.


Smoking Policy

University policy states smoking is prohibited inside all university facilities and within fifty (50) feet of the facility entrance, open window, or ventilation system. This policy applies to the front porch, lawn space and back-door patio of the Black House and the MCC.


Grilling Policy

Grilling is prohibited from all areas inside and outside the Black House and the MCC. This includes the front porch, lawn space and back-door patio. If you would like to use a grill, please reserve the front lawn of the Foster-Walker Complex (behind the MCC) through Norris Events Planning.



Cooking Policy

MSA requests that students and student groups do not cook within the Black House or MCC, aside from using microwaves to heat food. Any other cooking activities must be approved by a member of MSA staff before they occur.



Please do not park and/or lock a bike to any part of the Black House or the MCC. Bikes are to remain outside of the building and should be stored using the bike racks available behind both buildings. All bikes found attached to the building are subject to being cut and taken away by Facilities Management or University Police.

MSA Staff Desks, Offices & Computers

Access to the desks, offices and computers assigned to MSA staff members are limited to MSA staff only. Please do not use supplies or chairs from any desk without permission. Computers are password protected.



Room and Banner Reservations

Please click here to reserve rooms and banner space in the Black House and the MCC at least one week in advance. Students, faculty and staff are eligible to reserve rooms. The person making the reservation must await email confirmation from an MSA staff member. (Submitting a reservation request does not guarantee reservation). Please allow 2-3 business days for confirmation.


Room Reservation Cancellations, Changes & No-Show Policy

Room reservations cancellations and changes for the Black House and MCC should be sent via email to Please allow 2-3 business days for confirmation.Same-day cancellations or changes must be made in person or by calling the Black House or MCC directly. There is a 15 minute grace period for a group that schedules a meeting or event lasting 1 hour or less and a 30 minute grace period for a meeting or event lasting one 1 hour or longer. If a group does not show for its reservation and the grace period has expired, then the room in question is open to any person or group needing that space.


Advertising on the MSA Listserv, Website, and MCC TV

Listserv, website and TV advertisement requests may be submitted through our MSA advertising form. Please send advertising requests at least one week in advance to ensure their timely distribution.



Copy Machines

The copy machines at the Black House and MCC are open to all students and student groups. It is each student or student group’s responsibility to supply their own paper.


Fax Machines

Students may use the fax machines at the MCC and Black House to receive and send faxes related to student group business and academic work. Documents received for student groups will be placed in their mailboxes. Documents not claimed in a reasonable amount of time may be discarded. Please take care when sending or receiving sensitive information. Any unclaimed faxes including sensitive information will be destroyed. Students who wish to send faxes at the Black House should contact the front office for assistance.


Computer Lab

The Black House computer lab is located on the second floor, and the MCC computer lab is located on the first floor. There are four computers (two Macs and 2 PCs) available in each computer lab. No food or drink is allowed in the labs.


Mail & Student Group Mailboxes

Personal mail must be sent to students’ on-campus or off-campus residence. Mailboxes for student groups are located on the first floor of the Black House and first floor of the MCC. Mail received for student groups will be placed in the appropriate mailboxes.

If arrangements are made to have mail sent to the Black House or the MCC, it is the responsibility of the student group to ensure such mail is properly addressed to the group’s attention. Include a first and last name along with the student group name. Personal mail must be sent to your on-campus or off-campus residence.


Furniture, Supplies & Equipment

All property of the Black House and the MCC must remain on building premises. Property includes furniture, office supplies and building equipment. General rule of thumb: if you or your group does not own the particular item in question, then it cannot be removed from the building.

Furniture such as tables and chairs may be used and rearranged within each respective building for meetings and events, but the furniture must be returned to its original location immediately following the meeting or event.



Personal items may not be stored at either the Black House or the MCC. At the Black House, student groups can store items in their respective offices if they have one. Additional storage space is not available at the Black House. MSA is not responsible for damaged or missing items placed in the basement. For specific storage requests at the MCC, please speak with MSA staff members.


Black House Policy Committee

During the 2020-2021 school year, in partnership with the Black House Renovation Steering Committee, Multicultural Student Affairs has brought together a group of students, alumni, faculty, and staff to form the Black House Policy Committee.

The charge of this committee was to develop student-centered policies and procedures for the Black House, that honor the legacy of the Black House, increase a sense of safety, security and encourage efficiency of operations. The Black House and how it supports Black student life at NU has evolved over the years. Since its inception, a lot has changed in our society and especially within higher education. We are faced with balancing the need for community building while also prioritizing safety. We have federal laws and city ordinances we must contend with, while still unapologetically naming we need a safe and brave space for our Black students. Given this context, some of the policies to be explored and decided upon include:

  • Safety & Security
  • Hours of operation
    • Access to space
    • Safety protocols
  • Data collection
    • Food and beverage
    • Cleaning
    • Amplified sound
    • Gatherings
The committee consisting of students, alumni, faculty and staff met to 
learn the historical context of each of these policies, reviewed benchmarking research from other institutions with similar facilities, met with content area experts regarding law and policies, to then create new policies for the Fall 2021 academic year.
Below were members of the Black House Policy Committee
Committee Members 

Daviree Velazquez Philip


Multicultural Student Affairs 

Breajna Dawkins

2021 MS, Medill School of Journalism Alum 2012 BSJ

Zindeh Scere

2024, School of Education & Social Policy

Foster Taylor 

2023, School of Communication;

Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences

Imani Minor

2021, Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences

Alyscia Raines

Assistant Director 

Multicultural Student Affairs

Linda Luk

Aadministrative Assistant

Multicultural Student Affairs 

Coretta L. King

Director of Operations & Events

Norris University Center 

 MaryAnn Marsh 


Northwestern University Black Alumni Association (NUBAA) 

Travis L. Martin, Ph.D.


Fraternity & Sorority Life 

Rob Brown


Social Justice Education 

Robert Anthony Ward, Ph.D.

Professor of Instruction & Weinberg Advisor

Cook Family Writing Program and the African American Studies Department

Charles Holmes-Hope


Residential Life

Learn more about the anticipated opening at Updates: Campus Inclusion & Community - Northwestern University  

Cleaning Guidelines

Cleanliness at the Black House and the MCC must be maintained so we can accommodate a wide variety of activities and occupants. This standard requires that those using facilities at the Black House or the MCC meet these criteria:

Failure to clean up will result in a re-evaluation of the group’s reservation privileges and could lead to a loss of privileges.