WKU dedicates Munday Hall in honor of first Black undergraduate student

WKU's Munday Hall dedicated to first black undergraduate student
Published: Oct. 28, 2022 at 12:58 PM CDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

BOWLING GREEN, Ky. (WBKO) - Individuals gathered Friday morning outside the new Munday Hall as Western Kentucky University dedicated a building in honor of the university’s first Black undergraduate student.

WKU President Timothy C. Caboni initially announced that Northeast Hall would be renamed Munday Hall in July 2021.

“We gather to honor an individual who dedicated her life to changing the lives of others... A trailblazer in every sense of the word. Her remarkable life is marked by a series of firsts. And she made a path seemingly difficult for so many, just a little bit easier. Countless individuals had benefited from her determination, and all of us at WKU owe her a significant debt of gratitude,” Caboni said.

Margaret Munday transferred from Kentucky State College after Kentucky’s higher education institutions, including the precursor to WKU, Western Kentucky State College, were desegregated in September 1956. She graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in music in 1960.

“It is the day I’ll remember, one day I’ll never forget,” Munday said at the dedication ceremony, “Had anyone told me in 1956 when I stepped into these and charted waters, that this word occurred today, I would say you don’t know what you’re talking about. I would not have believed it.”

After teaching for four years at Johnstown School in Olmstead, she became the first Black teacher at Auburn High School. She ended up teaching at every school in the Logan County school system.

At Friday’s ceremony, Munday was presented with a smaller version of that plaque by two students who are recipients of the newly-announced Munday Hall Scholarship, Jeremiah Morrow and Ashanti Groves. The housing scholarship, made possible by a gift from George and C.J. Nichols, provides funding for two students each year who reside in Munday Hall.

“History is in the making for me and WKU,” she said. “When climbing for a goal and you reach that goal, maintain. I hope that students will remember the importance of stepping outside of their comfort zone to pave the way for others.”