by KC Doman
The Catholic University of America’s Black Student Alliance will host a unifying event on Saturday, February 25th named “The Black and White Tie Affair” in the Pryzbyla Great Rooms. The event is being held in February, which is Black History Month, to showcase the various cultures of the students who make up the Alliance, and to promote a vital awareness of the diversity in our community.
“Going to a school like CUA that is a predominantly white institute, it can be hard to find a sense of identity as a student of color.” said Samantha Rubin, the current president of Black Student Alliance, a junior nursing major. “BSA offers students that sense of identity, a sense of comfort, and a community to build with.”
The Black Student Alliance strives to enable the formation of an accepting environment between students at the Catholic University of America. The event is to be a semi-formal affair similar to those held by the Student Organization of Latinos (SOL) annual Noche de Gala or Program Board’s Founder’s Day and Mistletoe Balls.
“Students will have food options from several African and Caribbean dishes, along with performances such as poetry readings and cultural dance groups,” said sophomore Briah Baker, secretary of BSA and a media and communication studies major.
“The night will also feature a DJ and plenty of time for dancing” said junior psychology major and vice president of Black Student Alliance, Ashley Duffoo.
Black Student Alliance provides a community of comfort and an acceptance of diversity. Various students on campus have experienced this on a personal level, and many of these same students make up the leadership board of the organization.
“I personally am passionate about BSA because when I first came here I struggled with finding a sense of self here. I made connections here and there with other students but did not feel like I had built a community that really understood me all around,” said Lubin on her personal ties to the organization. “When I found BSA, I found that sense of comfort and familiarity in them and it definitely helped me grow as an individual here at CUA.”
“BSA planned this event to be the culmination of Black History Month,” Duffoo said.
Student Alliance has been especially busy with various other events as well over the past few weeks, such as their Soul Food Dinner.
“On February 12th, BSA had another event to celebrate Black History Month. It was our annual Soul Food Dinner and Gospel Mass where we enjoyed traditional soul food and then attended mass at St. Vincent de Paul. Trinity University’s gospel choir did the music for mass. It was a great event, we enjoyed good food and our community,” said Baker.
When asked about her feelings about the organization, Lubin said “I’ve noticed that my other friends felt as though because they were not a student of color that they were not welcome in BSA, but in fact it was the complete opposite. We encourage community and offer people an opportunity to learn and engage more in diversity.”
Baker summed up the Black Students Alliance’s mission and the atmosphere of their events by saying “We’re an open community of people on this campus who talk about and discuss important issues affecting our community. We also just enjoy hanging out together!”