BSU Restores Weekly Newsletter
Melanie Espinal – General Assignments Reporter
The Black Student Union is like a family that has a cause, said Jayan Kulmacz-Bryan, a junior business and sports management major.
This semester BSU members have decided to start a weekly newsletter.
The newsletter will include events that BSU will organize and promote black businesses. There will also be discussion on the political climate of these last couple of years, with police brutality being at the forefront.
Shannon Harrelle, president of the organization, said one day he was looking through the archives and found a newsletter from 2008.
The front page had an editorial about Senator John McCain and President Barack Obama. Another hot topic in the newsletter at the time was OJ Simpson making his way back to headlines. As well as a feature on how to “dress for success” at job interviews.
“It was so weird to see how students were responding to issues then,” Kulmacz-Bryan said.
He said this was because Barack Obama being elected meant the first black president was going to be in office.
Harrelle said as soon as BSU can get an okay to start they will be publishing a small weekly addition as a test run.
The template was pretty cool, he said, and a good platform to discuss issues in the black community and culture.
“Right now,” he said, “the plan is to produce weeklies in small numbers until we see that there’s a demand.”
He said in order to do this BSU will talk to students to see if it is something they would like to see, as to not waste resources.
Sydney Lane, a senior interdisciplinary studies major with a focus in psychology and women’s studies, is BSU’s treasurer.
She said it will be a great way to get students involved with BSU, since a lot of people think in order to be involved you have to be black.
“When I first joined BSU,” Lane said, “our president was a white girl named Molly.”
Lane said even though their events have large turnouts, diverse club member retention has not been so good these last couple of years.
“A lot of it,” Lane said, “was because of time we had our meetings, on Wednesday nights.”
One of the events hosted last semester was double dutch at the Buley Library, in which students and family came down to jump rope, dance, and have a good time.
“The Multicultural Center,” Bryan said, “has a hard time being supported in general.”
Bryan said Ms. Dian Albert-Brown is a really big help in that regard.
“We love Ms. Dian,” said Harrelle, “she’s always fighting for us and putting on inclusive events.”
BSU’s new meeting time is Mondays at 1 p.m., in the Adanti Student center. This is so more commuters can be included in meetings, because it falls on community hour.
Lane said an event that BSU is participating in this month is a nationwide walkout protest on September 19. The protest is speaking out against the lack of diversity in educators nationwide, and was created by NAACP chapters.
“This newsletter will raise awareness to issues like these,” Harrelle said. “I know just discussing them won’t make a huge change, but it’s a start.”
Photo Credit: Melanie Espinal – General Assignments Reporter