Important PSA: students are not required to identify with club names in order to participate in them.
While this may seem like an obvious statement, many students both at St. Kate’s and elsewhere do not know this. Like many of St. Kate’s multicultural organizations, the Black Student Association (BSA) is open to all students looking to learn more about issues affecting black people. Not only does BSA focus on discussing current matters of importance in the black community in addition to Black History, but also it seeks to educate everyone interested on these matters.
“BSA exists to create a community among all students, especially students of color, where they feel a sense of warmth, inclusiveness and responsibility to their school, peers and community,” said BSA President Rochelle Vincent ’16, Psychology and Public Health.
In order to accomplish this goal, Vincent is assisted by Hattisha Gary ’17 as vice president, Tiana Danforth ’17 as treasurer and Bethlehem Yewhalawork ’17 as secretary. Together, they hope to create a well-knit community that informs students of issues that are important to and affect black students.
As one of the ways the club informs about current issues, BSA hosts a monthly Sister Circle where discussions on current events pertaining to the black community as well as St. Kate’s are held. The first Sister Circle of the 2015-16 school year was held on Thursday, Oct. 22 and topics, such as the implementation of the co-ed EWO program and the need for a person of color in the search for St. Kate’s new president, were discussed.
In an effort to keep the conversation going, BSA will be hosting a fall retreat on Nov. 14-15, where in-depth conversations about social justice issues will be held. The retreat not only allows participants to relax and bond, but also partake in a civic engagement activity. Students will also watch movies, receive spa treatments and bake.
“Everyone who wants to discuss the matters of black Americans is welcome to the retreat, however it does cost $10 and there is a cap of 15 attendees,” Danforth said.
In addition to the fall retreat, BSA’s major events include Black History Month, where there will be several events to inform the community, and the Ebony Ball held on March 5 at 7:30 p.m. in the Rauenhorst Ballroom. BSA will also volunteer at Feed My Children on Nov. 12 from 8 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. and Dec. 3 from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
BSA would like to encourage all students to join the discussion and attend meetings held on Thursdays at 5 p.m. in the CdC’s Center for Women. Students can contact BSA by email at email@example.com in order to get involved.
“Keep your eye our for BSA because we are here and would love your input and involvement. We love meeting new people,” Vincent said.