A candid shot of some students T THE  All Are Welcome Late Nite event is held as part of Unity Week.

Welcome to Ball State University's Culturally Inclusive Holiday Calendar, celebrating diversity within our community.

This calendar embraces various cultural observances, fostering an environment where all traditions are valued. Join us in actively seeking to understand and appreciate perspectives different from our own. Bookmark and use this concise guide to navigate the academic year, stepping outside your comfort zone to connect with the rich tapestry of our community.

Inclusive practices are everyone's responsibility. Please follow the guidelines to request accommodations for holidays or observances on days class or work is in session.

Find an error or have an important date you’d like to see on the diversity calendar? Contact our office and let us know.

Inclusive Calendar


Holiday or Observance

Religious Group

January 7, 2024
Orthodox Christmas Christian Orthodox
January 8, 2024
Spring Semester Begins

January 15, 2024
Martin Luther King Day
February 10, 2024 (public observance Feb. 12)
Lunar New Year

February 14, 2024 Ash Wednesday Christian
February 19, 2024 President's Day   
March 3-10, 2024
Spring Break  
March 8, 2024
Maha Shivaratri
March 10, 2024 Beginning of Ramadan
March 18, 2024 Beginning of Lent
Christian Orthodox
March 23-24, 2024
March 24, 2024 Holi Hindu
March 29, 2024
Good Friday
March 31, 2024
Easter Christian
April 5, 2024  Lailat Ul Qadr Islamic
April 17, 2024
Ram Navami
April 22-30, 2024
*Passover (Pesach)
May 3, 2024
Spring Semester Ends

May 3, 2024
Orthodox Good Friday
Christian Orthodox
May 5, 2024
Orthodox Easter Christian Orthodox
May 27, 2024
Memorial Day

June 11-13, 2024
June 16-18, 2024
Eid al-Adha
July 4, 2024 Independence Day Observance
July 7, 2024
August 19, 2024
Fall Semester Begins

August 26, 2024
Janmashtami  Hindu
September 2, 2024
Labor Day

September 15-16, 2024 Mawlid-al-Nabi
 October 2-4, 2024 Rosh Hashanah Jewish
October 3-12, 2024 Navaratri/Dassehra
October 7-8, 2024
Fall Break

October 11-12, 2024
Yom Kippur
October 14, 2024
Indigenous Peoples' Day

October 16-18, 2024
October 23-24, 2024
*Shmini Atzeret
October 24-25, 2024 *Simchat Torah  Jewish
November 1, 2024 Diwali
November 11, 2024
Veteran's Day

November 28, 2024 Thanksgiving Day

December 25, 2024 Christmas Day
December 25, 2024 – January 2, 2025 Hanukkah (Chanukah)

Heritage and Recognition Months

We are committed to our enduring values of Inclusiveness and Social Responsibility, and our Beneficence Pledge, which emphasizes valuing the intrinsic worth of every community member. In line with these values, it is important for the campus community to be informed about national and university-celebrated Heritage or Recognition Months. Additionally, numerous special recognition days highlight significant events for various populations, fostering awareness and understanding among campus community members.

For comprehensive details on religious observances, holidays, and occasions, campus community members are encouraged to refer to the Inclusive Holiday Calendar to avoid organizing events during these designated periods. 

If you are hosting an event tied to heritage months or recognition days and wish to integrate it into Inclusive Excellence's calendar, please complete our Qualtrics form. For further inquiries or assistance related to accessibility issues, feel free to contact the Office of Inclusive Excellence at ie@bsu.edu.

Black History Month is an annual observance in the United States, Canada, and some other countries, dedicated to celebrating and recognizing the achievements, contributions, and history of Black individuals and communities. It is typically observed in the month of February in the United States and Canada, while in the United Kingdom and Ireland, it is celebrated in October.

The origins of Black History Month can be traced back to the efforts of Dr. Carter G. Woodson, an African American historian and scholar, and the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History (now known as the Association for the Study of African American Life and History). Dr. Woodson and the association initiated "Negro History Week" in 1926, choosing the second week of February to coincide with the birthdays of Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass. The aim was to highlight the often-overlooked achievements and history of Black Americans.

Over time, Negro History Week evolved into Black History Month, gaining increased recognition and acceptance. The month provides an opportunity to focus on the accomplishments and struggles of Black individuals throughout history, acknowledging their contributions to various fields such as science, literature, art, politics, and civil rights.

During Black History Month, educational institutions, community organizations, and cultural institutions often host events, lectures, and exhibits that highlight the achievements of Black individuals and promote a greater understanding of Black history and culture. It serves as a reminder of the importance of diversity, inclusion, and equality while fostering a sense of pride and unity within the Black community.

Women's History Month is an annual observance in March that celebrates and honors the achievements, contributions, and history of women throughout the world. During this month, there is a particular emphasis on recognizing the accomplishments of women in various fields, including science, literature, politics, art, education, and social justice.

The origins of Women's History Month can be traced back to International Women's Day, which was first observed in the early 20th century and gained momentum over the years. In the United States, Women's History Month was officially recognized in 1987, thanks to a proclamation by Congress and subsequent presidential proclamations.

Throughout Women's History Month, various events and activities take place globally, including lectures, panel discussions, art exhibitions, film screenings, and performances. Schools, universities, cultural institutions, and community organizations often organize programs to highlight the accomplishments of women and to address issues related to gender equality and women's rights.

The celebration of Women's History Month is essential in promoting a more inclusive and accurate understanding of history, ensuring that the contributions of women are recognized and acknowledged. It also serves as an opportunity to reflect on the progress made in advancing gender equality and to advocate for continued efforts to address the challenges that women may still face.

Disability Awareness Month is not a specific, universally recognized designation, and awareness campaigns for disabilities may vary in timing and scope. However, there is a broader recognition of the importance of promoting awareness and understanding of disabilities throughout the year. In the United States, for example, October is often observed as National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM).

National Disability Employment Awareness Month aims to highlight the contributions of workers with disabilities and promote inclusivity in the workplace. It emphasizes the skills and talents that people with disabilities bring to the workforce, as well as the importance of creating accessible and accommodating work environments.

During this month, employers, community organizations, and educational institutions may organize events, workshops, and awareness campaigns to educate the public about the value of an inclusive workforce and to address misconceptions about disabilities. These activities often focus on promoting equal opportunities, accessibility, and dismantling barriers that individuals with disabilities may face.

It's important to note that various organizations and regions may choose different times to observe disability awareness initiatives, and the terminology used may differ. The overarching goal is to foster understanding, promote inclusivity, and advocate for the rights of people with disabilities. If you are interested in specific disability awareness efforts, it's advisable to check with local disability advocacy groups, government agencies, or relevant organizations for the most accurate and current information.

Campus Pride Month is a time for educational institutions to celebrate and support LGBTQ+ individuals within the campus community. These events may include activities like panel discussions, guest speakers, workshops, art exhibits, and social gatherings. The goal is often to raise awareness, foster inclusivity, and create a more supportive and affirming environment for LGBTQ+ students, faculty, and staff.

Many educational institutions have established LGBTQ+ resource centers or offices that work towards creating a more inclusive campus climate. These centers may play a role in organizing Campus Pride Month activities and events. The month could also coincide with other nationally recognized LGBTQ+ awareness months or events, such as Pride Month in June.

National Arab American Heritage Month is a month-long celebration that takes place in April to honor and recognize the contributions and achievements of Arab Americans to the United States. This annual event was first established in 2017 by the Arab American Institute and has since been recognized by several states and cities across the country. The idea for National Arab Heritage Month was first proposed by the Arab American Institute in 2014, but it wasn't until 2017 that it was officially recognized and celebrated. The month of April was chosen because it marks the anniversary of the first Arab American immigrant's arrival in the United States in 1875. This month also coincides with other important events in Arab American history, such as the Arab American Day on April 5th and the Arab American Heritage Week on April 22nd.

The main purpose of National Arab Heritage Month is to celebrate and honor the rich culture, history, and contributions of Arab Americans to the United States. It also aims to raise awareness and educate the public about the diverse Arab American community and their impact on American society. This month-long celebration also serves as a platform to combat negative stereotypes and discrimination against Arab Americans.

Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month (AAPIHM), observed in the United States during the month of May, is a time to recognize and celebrate the rich history, diverse cultures, and significant contributions of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (AAPI) to the nation's development and progress.

The month of May was chosen for this observance to commemorate two significant historical events: the arrival of the first Japanese immigrants to the United States on May 7, 1843, and the completion of the Transcontinental Railroad on May 10, 1869, which was built with the substantial contribution of Chinese immigrant labor.

AAPI Heritage Month provides an opportunity to highlight the achievements and challenges faced by Asian American and Pacific Islander communities. It aims to raise awareness about the diverse ethnicities, languages, traditions, and histories within these communities. Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders come from a wide range of countries, including but not limited to China, Japan, Korea, Vietnam, the Philippines, India, Pakistan, and various Pacific Island nations.

During this month, various events and activities take place across the country, including cultural festivals, art exhibitions, performances, educational programs, and community discussions. Schools, universities, community organizations, and cultural institutions often organize events to promote a better understanding of the AAPI experience, history, and contributions in fields such as science, technology, art, literature, politics, and more.

The celebration of AAPI Heritage Month is an opportunity to embrace the diversity within the Asian American and Pacific Islander communities and to foster cross-cultural understanding and appreciation. It also highlights the importance of acknowledging and addressing the unique challenges that individuals within these communities may face.

National Hispanic Heritage Month, also known as Latino Heritage Month, is an annual celebration in the United States that recognizes and honors the contributions, culture, and history of Hispanic and Latino Americans. The month-long celebration runs from September 15 to October 15 each year. The timing is significant as it encompasses the independence anniversaries of several Latin American countries, including Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua, on September 15, as well as Mexico's Independence Day on September 16 and Chile's on September 18.

The observance was initially established as a week-long celebration by President Lyndon B. Johnson in 1968 and was later expanded to a month-long period by President Ronald Reagan in 1988. It aims to shed light on the diverse cultures, traditions, and histories of people with roots in Mexico, the Caribbean, Central America, South America, and Spain.

During Hispanic Heritage Month, various events and activities take place across the country, such as cultural festivals, art exhibits, music performances, educational programs, and community gatherings. Schools, universities, museums, and other institutions often organize events to raise awareness about the rich heritage and significant contributions of Hispanic and Latino Americans in areas like literature, art, science, politics, and sports.

The celebration serves as an opportunity for people of all backgrounds to learn more about the diverse Hispanic and Latino cultures and to foster a greater understanding and appreciation for the contributions of these communities to the broader American tapestry. It also emphasizes the importance of diversity and inclusion in the United States.

Native American Heritage Month is observed in the United States during the month of November. It is a time to recognize, celebrate, and honor the rich and diverse cultures, histories, traditions, and contributions of Native American and Indigenous peoples.

The idea of a month dedicated to Native American heritage has roots in the early 20th century when Dr. Arthur C. Parker, a Seneca Indian and the director of the Museum of Arts and Science in Rochester, New York, advocated for a day to honor the contributions of the first Americans. Over time, the observance expanded, and in 1990, President George H.W. Bush officially declared November as National American Indian Heritage Month.

During Native American Heritage Month, various events and activities take place across the country. These may include cultural festivals, powwows, art exhibits, educational programs, storytelling sessions, and community gatherings. The aim is to raise awareness about the rich and diverse cultures of Native American peoples and to promote a better understanding of their history, challenges, and contributions.

This observance is an opportunity for individuals and communities to learn about the unique traditions and customs of Native American and Indigenous peoples, as well as to reflect on the historical and ongoing struggles they face. It also emphasizes the importance of recognizing the sovereignty and contributions of Native nations and fostering respectful relationships between Native and non-Native communities.

Special Days

January 27th

International Holocaust Remembrance Day

International Holocaust Remembrance Day is observed on January 27th every year to commemorate the victims of the Holocaust, one of the darkest periods in human history. This day was designated by the United Nations General Assembly in 2005 to honor the memory of the six million Jews and millions of others who were systematically murdered by the Nazi regime during World War II.

International Holocaust Remembrance Day serves as a reminder of the atrocities committed during the Holocaust and the importance of standing against hate and discrimination. It also honors the survivors and their resilience in the face of unimaginable horrors. This day is a call to action to prevent future genocides and promote tolerance and understanding among all people.


Juneteenth, also known as Freedom Day or Emancipation Day, is a holiday that commemorates the end of slavery in the United States. On June 19, 1865, Union soldiers arrived in Galveston, Texas and announced that all enslaved individuals were now free, two and a half years after the Emancipation Proclamation was signed. This day has become a symbol of freedom and equality for African Americans and is recognized as a state holiday in 47 states. In this article, we will explore the importance of Juneteenth and why it should be celebrated and recognized by all.

National Disability Independence Day

National Disability Independence Day is celebrated on July 26th each year in the United States. This day commemorates the signing of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) in 1990, which is a landmark civil rights law that prohibits discrimination against individuals with disabilities in all areas of public life. This day serves as a reminder of the importance of equal rights, accessibility, and inclusion for people with disabilities. It is a time to recognize the achievements and contributions of individuals with disabilities, as well as to advocate for continued progress towards a more inclusive society.

International day of the World’s Indigenous People

On August 9th, the world celebrates the International Day of the World’s Indigenous People. This day is dedicated to raising awareness of the challenges faced by indigenous communities around the world and promoting their rights and cultures. Indigenous peoples are the descendants of the original inhabitants of a particular region or territory. They have a unique cultural identity and have often been marginalized and discriminated against by dominant societies.

The United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP) recognizes the collective and individual rights of indigenous peoples, including the right to self-determination, land and resources, and cultural preservation. However, despite this declaration, indigenous peoples continue to face numerous challenges and violations of their rights.

Transgender Day of Remembrance

The Transgender Day of Remembrance (TDoR) is observed annually on November 20th to honor the memory of transgender individuals who have lost their lives due to anti-transgender violence. The day also serves as a moment to raise awareness about the discrimination, harassment, and violence faced by transgender people around the world.

Transgender Day of Remembrance was founded in 1999 by transgender advocate Gwendolyn Ann Smith to honor the memory of Rita Hester, a transgender woman who was brutally murdered in 1998. Since then, this day has been observed annually to bring attention to the violence and discrimination faced by transgender individuals. It is also a time to celebrate the lives and identities of transgender people and to raise awareness about the issues they face.World

World AIDS Day

World AIDS Day is observed annually on December 1st to raise awareness about HIV/AIDS (Human Immunodeficiency Virus/Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome) and to show support for those living with the virus. It is an opportunity for people worldwide to unite in the fight against HIV, to commemorate those who have died from AIDS-related illnesses, and to reflect on the progress made in the prevention, treatment, and care of HIV/AIDS.

The day was first established in 1988 by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the United Nations to highlight the global threat of HIV/AIDS and to emphasize the importance of taking action to combat the epidemic. Since then, World AIDS Day has been marked by various activities, events, and campaigns organized by governments, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), and communities around the world.