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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Farewell from the graduating Battalion staff of 2024
Farewell from the graduating Battalion staff of 2024
The Battalion May 4, 2024

Council kicks off Black History Month

 
 

Throughout the month of February Jasmine Bailey, president of the Black Student Alliance Council, and her organization are commemorating the contributions of African-Americans to American history and promoting awareness of the black community on the Texas A&M campus.
The Black Student Alliance Council kicked off Black History Month early Wednesday, bringing Lamont Hill, a social activist and scholar, to campus where he engaged the student body in a discussion addressing some of the most pressing issues affecting the African-American community in the 21st century.
Black History Month is an opportunity to think about where weve been and where were going, Hill said. We live in a nation that doesnt grow old, it grows up We have to convince the world that it can still be better. Black History Month shows us that we must keep going.
Hill is well known throughout the country and also a huge contributor toward the progression of the black community, something the campus needs, said senior business major and BSAC president, Jasmine Bailey.
Baileys journey towards becoming a black student leader began during her Fish Camp session, where she quickly realized how different things would be when school started because she was one of few black females in her session.
I first knew I would have a different experience because I was aware no one else looked like me, Bailey said. But that inspired me to hopefully promote the awareness and unity of the black community.
As Bailey developed as a student, she looked toward opportunities to grow as a leader and unite the black community, which then led her to join BSAC and eventually become a sister of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc.
According to the Black Student Alliance Councils website, the purpose of BSAC is to enhance and unify the black community while making Texas A&M University more aware of the accomplishments, achievements and the needs of the black student body.
I would like to see other students be aware of the community here on campus, Bailey said. Although we are all scholars, we are also a small community that needs to build a stronger bond.
In 1963, Gen. James Earl Rudder allowed women into the University on a limited basis and began accepting black students as well. Since then, enrollment of students has increased, but in fall 2011, when A&M surpassed 50,000 students for the first time, the African American population totaled 1,723.
As president of BSAC, Bailey and her executive staff host different events throughout the year in order to bring black students together. Events such as Hump Day, a social held on Wednesdays in Spence Park, allow students to enjoy different games, listen to music and eat free food.
A lot of what BSAC does is directed toward fostering a community based on the value of respect, Bailey said. At the same time, we want to see underclassmen to develop as leaders on this campus and within the community.
During the month there will be a number of events hosted by different organizations, and though it is a combined organizational effort, Woodson Black Awareness Committee has the responsibility of coordinating the I Am Black History campaign and the calendar of events.
The campaign is part of Campus with a Dream, a campus climate initiative dedicated to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and the annual MLK Breakfast, said junior political science major and WBAC chair, Aja Holston.
Holston said the calendar is a way to unite all of the organizations that want to be part of Black History Month. She said black history isnt just for black people; its for all, which is why if students look at the posters around campus, they will notice diverse students representing different black figures.
On Feb. 1, BSAC will be hosting an inaugural event for students to celebrate together as they walk for freedom. The freedom walk will begin at 12 p.m. in front of Sbisa Dining Hall and students will then proceed down Military Walk toward Rudder Fountain.
The walk is an event to commemorate and honor those civil rights heroes who have come before us, Bailey said. One hundred and fifty years ago, President Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation and 50 years ago MLK delivered the I Have a Dream speech.

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