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An Interview With the Black Student Alliance

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Jeremy Moser | jmoser9@radford.edu

The Black Student Alliance, or BSA, is a part of the University’s Center for Diversity and Inclusion. It is meant to provide an institution led by black people for black people that feel uncomfortable in a “predominantly white institution.”

These students may feel out of place because of their minority status, or they may have felt attacked because of their race. Regardless, the BSA extends a hand to black students to make them feel more included here at Radford.

Lawrence Davin, a Political Science major and current president of the BSA, has found inspiration in intelligent black authors and leaders throughout history. Former President Barrack Obama was one of his role models. The President’s compassion and intellect encouraged him to pursue law himself. He aspires to use his education to enact change in his hometown of Washington D.C. The Black Student Alliance has been an integral stepping stone in his career.

The BSA has held several events in the past to both include black students at Radford and help get their voices heard. These have been something as simple as a “natural hair panel” that provided information to help black women take care of their hair or something more motivated like meetings with the administration to discuss ways that the school can help its students of color.

They are also hosting an upcoming gun violence event to help students should they find themselves in a dangerous situation.

The BSA also helps to recognize the achievements of black students at Radford. The Black Excellence Gala will present awards for outstanding black scholarship, talent, and community outreach. The black-tie event will be held in Kyle Hall on April 21.

If you believe that the Black Student Alliance could help you, or if you think that you can use it to help others, Davin encourages everyone’s participation.

“Come out, engage in the fellowship. Be aware of each other, and what’s going on in society and on campus, so we can create change in the society and on our campus for future students,” said Davin.

Inclusion is not the sole goal of the Black Student Alliance. Davin has hopes that groups like the BSA will help improve the standing of black people in American society.

“The powers that we have always been white,” Davin told me. He explained to me that there are woes that only black people face because of their place in American history. As a result, there are “white power structures” that Davin hopes to tear down.

It is unfortunate that a group like this exists. It is evidence of widespread unrest among a significant portion of the population.

It is clear that some aspects of American life are not meeting the needs of some of Radford’s black students, and black people across the country feel these woes.

These problems have only been exacerbated in recent years. Whether or not you believe in these white power structures, it is essential to listen to what people have to say.

This is not a problem that will just go away, and it is marvelous to see people from different backgrounds come together to attempt to solve problems they perceive in society.

Photo Credit: (radford.edu)*

*Lawrence Davin (right of President Hemphill) at the BOV lunch last semester.

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