Days-Massolo Center

Phyllis A.H. Breland
Interim Director, Diversity & Inclusion

Mission, Principles and History

Mission Statement

The Days-Massolo Center has been established to enhance the academic, intellectual, social, cultural, and leadership dimensions of the Hamilton community. Through forums, panels, lectures, and other programming developed in cooperation with students, faculty and staff, the Days-Massolo Center serves as a central resource for exploring intersections between gender, race, culture, religion, sexuality, ability, socioeconomic class, and other facets of human difference. In doing so, it provides a critical engagement with the claim and promise of diversity as it has been outlined in the College Strategic Plan. As that plan states, the community will confront and engage most rewardingly with the issue of diversity when it is pursued not just as a social issue, but also as an intellectual one.


The following principles guide the priorities and goals of the Days-Massolo Center:

  • The diversity of the Hamilton community enriches all of its members.
  • An inclusive educational environment leads to better learning outcomes for all students.
  • Students maximize their educational, personal, and leadership potential through the transfer of knowledge into applied skills.
  • Campus partnerships enhance learning outcomes for all students.


The Days-Massolo Center organizes forums, panels, lectures and receptions, and other activities developed in cooperation with students, faculty, and staff to foster  systematic, critical engagement with the claim and promise of diversity. 

Role of the Director

The director supervises the development, implementation and evaluation of a variety of cross-cultural and academic programs that support the mission of the Days-Massolo Center. The director serves as a role model, advocate, mentor and educator, and works to promote dialogue and cross-cultural collaboration on campus. 

Role of the Associate Director

The associate director assists with the collaboration and facilitation of dialogues, conferences and other events that promote inclusivity and understanding at the Days-Massolo Center. Additionally, the associate director develops and sustains relationships through training, advising and mentoring to cultivate a safe space on campus.


CEC Task Force Report

This report presents recommendations for the reallocation of space for a Hamilton College Cultural Education Center (CEC), the former name of the Days-Massolo Center.

Community Forum Notes

These are a collection of notes that show how members of the Hamilton community define "community" and how they plan on being active participants in assuring that Hamilton embodies these community ideals. This report was issues September 18, 2009, and was a major keystone in the conversations that lead to the creation of the Days-Massolo Center.

Afro-Latin Cultural Center (ALCC)

"Two questions are involved in the creation of the Afro-American Cultural Center: One is the question of identity.  How, on this campus, in this kind of culture, is it possible for members of the student body who belong to the black race to retain a sense of identity and integrity in a culture which in many of its facets is recognizably and obviously alien to them?  …how, at this college, at our two colleges, do we respond educationally to the fact that there is a very sizeable and a very significant element in our society—the black race—who have a distinctive culture, a distinctive history?"

President John W. Chandler (1969-1973) made this statement on May 20, 1969 in the Hamilton College Chapel during the announcement to convert the nine room three-story house located at 204 College Hill Road into a Black Cultural Center at a cost of $7,000.  The agreement was negotiated between President Chandler, Christine Johnson, Alex Haley, and Hamilton-Kirkland Black Union leaders, headed by Humphrey Polanin.  At that time, Hamilton, an all male institution, reported a student body of 830 men, 15 of whom were African-American and two of whom were African.  Hamilton’s sister institution, Kirkland, reported a student body of 150 women, four of whom were African-American (Geneva Times, May 21, 1969, ALCC Papers).  Although Colgate, Cornell, and Williams colleges had been the sites of takeovers during that period (ALCC Papers), the discussions concerning the center at Hamilton were conducted in an atmosphere of “understanding,” and at no time were requests by the Black Union leaders characterized as “demands” (Rome Sentinel, May 20, 1969, ALCC Papers). More ...