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

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

The Battalion

Brazos County officials are distributing free backpacks, school supplies and gift cards for K-12 students on July 12 from 3:30 to 6:30 p.m. at the Bryan High Silver Campus Cafeteria.
Brazos County to distribute free school supplies
‘Back to School Bash’ invites K-12 families on July 12
Nicholas Gutteridge, Managing Editor • July 11, 2024
Texas A&M infielder Ali Camarillo (2) thros to first during Texas A&M’s game against Louisiana at the NCAA Bryan-College Station Regional Final at Olsen Field on Sunday, June 2, 2024. (Chris Swann/The Battalion)
Camarillo, Aschenbeck selected by Athletics, Cubs to round out 2024 MLB Draft
Luke White, Sports Editor • July 16, 2024

Junior SS Ali Camarillo and senior LHP Evan Aschenbeck rounded out the 2024 MLB Draft for Texas A&M baseball on Monday as they were selected...

Bob Rogers, holding a special edition of The Battalion.
Lyle Lovett, other past students remember Bob Rogers
Shalina SabihJuly 15, 2024

In his various positions, Professor Emeritus Bob Rogers laid down the stepping stones that student journalists at Texas A&M walk today, carving...

Chancellor John Sharp during a Board of Regents meeting discussing the appointmet of interim dean Mark Welsh and discussion of a McElroy settlement on Sunday, July 30, 2023 in the Memorial Student Center.
Analysis: Chancellor Sharp’s retirement comes with new dilemmas
Nicholas Gutteridge, Managing Editor • July 2, 2024

Texas A&M System Chancellor John Sharp announced Monday he will be retiring on June 30, 2025.  A figure notorious in state politics,...

SBP candidates participate in panel to address diversity and inclusion

Junior+supply+chain+management+major+Ben+Ikwuagwu+%28middle%29%2C+economics+senior+Bobby+Brooks+%28right%29+and+a+representative+filling+in+for+Kilian+Bresnahan+answer+questions+based+on+recent+diversity+issues+and+topics+happening+on+the+Texas+A%26amp%3BM+campus+this+past+Monday+in+Rudder+Tower.
Photo by Photo by Noah Simpson

Junior supply chain management major Ben Ikwuagwu (middle), economics senior Bobby Brooks (right) and a representative filling in for Kilian Bresnahan answer questions based on recent diversity issues and topics happening on the Texas A&M campus this past Monday in Rudder Tower.

On Monday, all student body president candidates participated in the Campaign Panel, a forum aimed to address some of the most challenging diversity and inclusion issues the next SBP will potentially face during their term.

 

The panel was hosted by the Student Government Association (SGA) Diversity Commission in Rudder 601. Diversity Commissioner and public service and administration graduate student Jonah Chen facilitated the panel. The panel was the first of its kind and served as a replacement to the annual vice president of student affairs meet and greet.

 

During the panel candidates responded to a wide range of questions from how they would have responded to the Feb. 9 incident had they been SBP, how they will handle pressing issues including the Bathroom Bill  — which would require transgender students to use the bathrooms in coordination with the sex listed on their birth certificate —  and how they intend to increase diversity and inclusivity if they are elected.

 

Chen said the panel was something he thought was necessary for both the students in attendance and SGA as a whole.

 

“It is disheartening to me to have to go to those student organization meetings  and hear these issues get talked in circles and have folks feel like nobody has their back … This event was important for me to put on because I wanted to engage all of our potential student body presidents because they are going to have to deal with this,” Chen said. “It’s important for everyone to know that out of these four sitting up here, one of them has to be capable of taking care of something drastic that happens in terms of diversity and inclusion.”

 

During the panel, SBP and economics junior Robert “Bobby” Brooks said diversity and inclusion must be a part of everything on campus.

 

“One of the biggest misconceptions that we sometimes tend to think as students is that diversity and inclusion has to be one entity and that has to be on everyone’s rear ends all the time to try to force things to happen, but we need to integrate diversity and inclusion into everything else that we do in student services,” Brooks said. “Things like dining and transportation need diversity focuses and aspects to them to so that they can before equitable and fair in how they produce their services.”

 

SBP candidate and university studies senior Robert McIntosh said he intends to focus on building relationships to make students of all backgrounds feel welcome.

 

“To me diversity is really simple — it boils down to relationships, and thats relationships across the board from every corner of campus,” McIntosh said. “And I think inclusion looks like, from the office of student body president is having personal friendships having touches with people thru lunch conversations email exchanges and phone calls to me that’s exactly what that looks like and I think that’s exactly what A&M needs when it comes to diversity.”

 

Benjamin Ikwuagwu, SBP candidate and supply chain management junior, said he thinks diversity and inclusion are important because they are two things that unite the Aggie family in a way nothing else can.

 

“Diversity in my opinion is the thing that challenges us to learn from each other,” Ikwuagwu said. “It’s how we grow, its how we continue developing as people and it’s how we learn from each other. Inclusion is defined as what brings us together and how we can be represented equally.”

 

While SBP candidate and management information systems senior Kilian Bresnahan was unable to attend the panel, accounting senior Benjamin Grubb represented him. Grubb said while neither he nor Bresnahan could know how it is to be a minority on campus, Bresnahan’s focus will be to empower and give a voice to those who are often overlooked.

 

“We need to empower those disenfranchised and minority groups because yes we can represent them but I am not them I am not a minority group so I don’t know what it’s like to be a minority student, so instead of me or Kilian being a voice for you we want to empower you guys because you guys know what it’s like to be a minority student,” Grubb said. “Until we empower you and have the minority students tell us what we need to do to make it a better place it won’t happen.”

 

The entire panel — which discussed topics including funding of the GLBT resource center and whether or not candidates think A&M should be a sanctuary campus — was recorded by the SGA diversity commission and is available to view in its entirety on their facebook page at facebook.com/TAMUDiversity.

Leave a Comment
Donate to The Battalion

Your donation will support the student journalists of Texas A&M University - College Station. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

More to Discover
Donate to The Battalion

Comments (0)

All The Battalion Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *