Okay, so I’ve been wokring with the Black Recognized Student Organizations here on campus for about two weeks now. We have a total of 24 RSOs and for some reason, we just can seem make things happen for minority students! The soley reason for this is because everyone is worried about themselves and coul dcate less about what others are doing. If I wasn’t so passionate about the black community on campus, I too would be careless, but the way my brain is set up…. I HAD to do something before graduation.
In the beginning, I sent an email to the Presidents and Vice-Presidents of each organization which basically said the following: “I am the social media and marketing intern for the Office of Student Involvement located in the SAC, room W310. This office also holds some of the biggest components to UofL:SGA, SAB, Freshman LEAD, and Enage Lead Serve. Why is is that the African American student population “isn’t” being heard? Why don’t African American students run for SGA positions? How many of us participate in Freshman LEAD or are on the Student Activities Board to make a difference on campus? If you work hard enough to make your mark, you will make a difference. Collectively, we have to change the representation of our black organizations. To my understanding, though UofL 18,17,16, and 15 may follow your particular organization via multiple accounts, our black campus community does not have a central way of connecting with ALL of the black organizations being provided, whether it may be for attending events or general body.”
I was so focused on creating a central hub or a likfe central website that our black students could go to. I asked if each president and vice-president set up a meeting time with me to answer a few questions about our campus and more specially, their organization. After meeting with majority of them, a light bulb flickered in my head. I asked myself: Why I am doing this? Because I care about the black UofL generations to come AND we need to create a central environment that allows all students to feel welcomed and appreciated. Of course, you may keep up your individual sites, but we need to implement something that serves as the point in which we collectively come together. This includes ALL aspects of our campus: Education, Service/Leadership, Personal Growth, and Greek Life. I’ve heard too many comments about how most students feel that UofL, being a PWI (predominately white institution), doesn’t do enough on this campus to ensure that everyone has a voice. Is it really UofL that isn’t doing enough or it is US?
On a more positive note, within the last week I set up a Black RSO meeting with the Director of a miniority hangout spot we have here on campus called the Cultural Center, Tierney Bates. We put together a very minor agenda and had the meeting TONIGHT. I’m excited to say that out of the 24 Black RSOs, 12 of them where represented. That’s better than none right? We discussed things like repetitive event ideas, lack of general body meeting attendance, event funding and funding application submission problems, not knowing how to use Orgsync effectively, finding good locations to hold events, and collaboration issues effected due to personal issues. We actually scheduled a Fall Leadership Retreat for November 7th and 8th (which Ill make a post about!!!)
These meetings will be held monthly. With the amount of information being shared, I’m just gonna have to keep you guys posted. 🙂