Join: Black Student Union

Published on Oct 07, 2013
Photo by Emily MadiganPhoto by Emily Madigan

The Black Student Union (BSU) is a diverse student organization, welcoming anyone and everyone to join their family, act as a voice for the black community and help promote equality and diversity around Columbia. President Alayna Bell-Price sat down with us to tell us about membership, activism and how to get involved.

What are the goals of the organization?

Our mission is to provide and promote the unity of Black/African-American students at Columbia College Chicago. Basically, we provide black students with community. We are truly giving the black community on campus a voice by promoting black culture through events and speakers.

What is a typical meeting like? When and where do you meet?

This year we’re stepping it up. We’re planning a different theme to each meeting that incorporates guest speakers. So far we have a stress management meeting lined up, a meeting about eating healthy, and so on. The speakers will have uplifting messages about the community, how to succeed in business, etc. After the speaker, we’ll then get into the meat of the meeting—discuss events and BSU business, then have an open discussion where members can share news or anything they would like to bring up in our community.

Meetings are Wednesdays at 6:30 pm in 618 S. Michigan, 4th floor.

What events do you participate in on campus?

The Black Student Union puts on the “Black Out Party” each year. Other than that , we hope to host a step show, which will be along the lines of Stomp the Yard. It’ll be really fun.  Then, we host the “Paint it Black” event every year, which is an African tribute show featuring the talents of the community.

How many members are in the BSU? 

Oh man…this year is going to be crazy! At our first meeting we had about 125 people show up! That’s insane. I’m not sure if the group has ever been this big before. Usually people start to trickle down as the year goes on. Schedules get busier, students decide if we’re a good fit for them, and by second semester our smallest meeting may have as few as 10 members, but usually remains at around 75 active members. 

What do you, as president, get out of being involved in the Black Student Union?

Family. This group is very family-oriented and the members have quickly become some of my best friends. We have an open communication policy, which really promotes us staying close with one another. I also have made a lot of connections through this organization. It’s like what Mark Kelly says at convocation, you have to form your “creative posse”. 

Check out the BSU facebook page for updates and events.