Black Student Union strives to make all voices heard

Thomas FizgeraldS, taff Writer

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The Madison College Black Student Union is working to educate people of issues that are important to people of color, find allies, and create inclusive spaces to discuss these issues. The leadership of the BSU and the Madison College Intercultural Exchange are creating a long-term resource network for black students, connecting them to identity-based organizations that can help them achieve their goals in school and beyond. Eventually, former students reconnect with the BSU and become part of a resource network for the next generation.

According to Jordan “Jodie” Williams, Student Support Advisor in College Preparedness & Academic Advancement, and co-advisor for the BSU with Donna Chapell, ABE Academic Writing Instructor in the School of Academic Advancement, the BSU is a student-led organization. Advisors collaborate with students to create a budget and arrange venues for events, but the students of the BSU are the ones who plan, set up, and really make events happen.

On Thursday, Feb. 28, in recognition of Black History month the BSU hosted an event called Black and Brilliant, a community meal followed by a forum covering a topic relevant to the black community. Thursday’s topic was Mental and Physical Health in the Black Community.

According to Williams, she and Chapell helped to coordinate the event, but the students of the BSU were fully in charge of picking the topic of the forum, planning the menu, and setting up the location. Upcoming events for the BSU include the Know Your Rights Campaign, which is a collaboration with the organization Protege, as well as the Sonya Renee Taylor Book Club on March 11.

The creation of these spaces for people of color and their allies to discuss issues and network gives the students of the BSU a power, a voice, and a community. Historically, and to a lesser but still strong degree currently, there has been a distinct lack of diversity in leadership roles locally and nationally. The BSU here at Madison College is working to change that from the ground up, because not all voices are being heard.