WKU’s First African American student Margaret Munday honored in building name change
BOWLING GREEN, Ky. (WBKO) - A local trailblazer is being honored on WKU’s campus.
Last week, the WKU Board of Regents approved the renaming of Northeast Hall to Munday Hall. The change honors Margaret Munday (’60) and will be the first building on campus named after an African American.
In 1956, Munday was the first African American student to enroll at WKU. During her time on the Hill, she majored in music and joined the Western Chorus. After graduating in 1960, Munday taught for more than 30 years as a music and chorus teacher.
WBKO spoke with the university about how this recognition will impact the WKU community.
“Margaret Munday. It’s a really fascinating story. She was a trailblazer at WKU, and in other areas of her life as well. She was the first black student to enroll in undergraduate courses at Western Kentucky University. She enrolled in 1956. And then, four years later, she became the first black student to earn an undergraduate degree from Western Kentucky University. So she was the first black undergraduate student to enroll and earn a degree. And so that was a really nice bookend to her time on the hill,” said WKU’s Director of Media Relations, Jace Lux.
Munday’s legacy also includes a number of awards and recognitions. In 1999, the WKU Society of African American Alumni honored her at their Spring Celebration. She joined the WKU Hall of Distinguished Alumni in 2012 and the WKU Department of Music inducted her into the department’s Wall of Fame in 2013. Additionally, a scholarship is named in her honor - the Margaret Munday Award for Excellence in African-American Studies.
“She was the first black teacher at Auburn High School in Logan County. And over the course of her 30-year career, she taught at every single school within the Logan County school system. So she is very well known in that community, and is just loved by her former students and has a reputation among her, very positive reputation among her former students,” said Lux.
A formal dedication of Munday Hall will happen at a later date.
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