Students start Black Student Association on campus

By Kait Bedell & Abi Brown – News Editor & Arts Editor

Students and faculty members attend the Gala in celebration of Black History Month hosted by the Black Student Association in De Witt Hall. Photos courtesy of the Black Student Association & Jalynn Hilton

The Black Student Association (BSA) is a new organization introduced this semester that focuses on providing a safe space for those within the community on campus.

According to the organization’s Instagram page, their goal is to “promote unity among Black students on campus through social and cultural events.” 

The Association also said they provide a “safe environment for students to discuss socio-cultural issues and belonging supports.” 

Advisor of the organization and the Associate Director for Equity & Inclusive Initiatives, James Perry said the environment has assisted in strengthening a sense of purpose. 

“Black Student Associations nationwide have historically created space for unifying Black students on college campuses and successfully advocating for social change,” Perry said. “The Lasell BSA will enable centering Black student experiences, honoring Black culture, and building community. 

Perry said he is both “humbled” and “proud” to serve as the advisor for BSA.

“The opportunity the BSA has to create and sustain change in this capacity at Lasell is indispensable,” Perry said. 

Vice President of the association Jalynn Hilton (‘24) said she felt it was necessary to start BSA in order to give students a platform for their voice. 

“We knew it was going to be hard because we go to a predominantly white institution,” Hilton said. “We didn’t want to make it seem like we aren’t appreciative of these things we have, it’s just that sometimes we need our own space to connect.” 

Hilton said BSA has a lot of goals in its first semester running on campus, including giving students a sense of community. 

“Sometimes as a Black student on campus it can be hard to find your footing and your identity,” Hilton said. “That was one thing we wanted to make sure people had.”

The Association has already hosted a Gala for students in De Witt Hall where students came to honor Black History Month. 

Hilton said this first event was successful and there was a large turnout of around 70 people which was much more people than they had anticipated. 

The organization is set to host an “I have a dream” event which will give Black students a platform to talk about their career goals. 

They will also partner with the Multicultural Student Union and ALPFA chapter to hold a “Culture Block Party” that will have different events and food trucks available to students on campus. 

Among other goals, Hilton said the association aims to build networking for students and to make the community “united as one.” 

The club meets every other Thursday on the upper floor of the Arnow Campus Center to discuss current issues (domestic and international), ways to improve our campus, and how to improve equity within our campus community and greater Boston. 

If you wish to get involved with BSA, please reach out to @lasellbsa on Instagram, president Claudine Jules (Cjules@lasell.edu) or vice president Hilton (Jhilton@lasell.edu). 

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