Black Student Union is Back

Lily Saenz, Staff Writer

  The president, vice president, and advisor of the Black Student Union (BSU) are working together to create a safe community on campus for people of color.

   “Our original goal was to make a community for Black students, any race of students really,” Junior Jabze Solomon said when discussing the Black Student Union Club. Solomon is the president of this club. According to Solomon, his responsibilities as president are to be a facilitator and make sure everyone is doing their parts.

   “I hope that we can start to work with other Black Student Unions in San Diego and petition to lawmakers about certain issues including gang violence and food deserts in San Diego,” said Junior Vice President Imani Ojutomori. He explained that the job of vice president of the Black Student Union is to plan and collaborate with other clubs.

   “I think our campus needed an advisor like me to be part of the Black Student Union,” said Teacher Anthony Pollard, the advisor of the Black Student Union. The Black Student Union meetings take place in Pollard’s classroom. 

   Solomon said he’s still focused on the goal of creating a community for people of color, but he also hopes to give Black students a voice on campus. Solomon also showed his hope for the future. “I just want the club to stay alive, even after my senior year,” said Solomon.

   Ojutomori said,  “Our goal is to educate people on campus about issues that are affecting the Black community, to reach out, and to contribute to solve these issues — being part of the solution.”

   “The students decide the goal every year,” Pollard said; however, he expressed, “I think more students should be a part of it, even students who do not consider themselves Black, even students who consider themselves White.”                              In order to succeed in these goals, they hope to expand the club, work with other clubs, and more, according to Ojutomori. 

   According to Pollard, the Black Student Union was formed in 2005, when he first started teaching at UCHS. Solomon stated he’s been part of the club since last year when the club started up again.

   “Last year, our meetings were a lot of open-ended conversations. We’d ask a general question and open the conversation to the students. I think it’s gonna be a lot like that this year,” Solomon said.

   Ojutomori said, “Last year, people would pop in to say hi, have conversations about certain topics regarding the Black community, like civil rights and historical black people. This year is gonna look a little different, because we are in person, no longer on Zoom.”

   Pollard stated, “From my experience, the Black Student Union is a place where students can feel safe to talk about issues, especially for students of color, a place where students can vent about things that may have bothered them.”

   Pollard described the potlucks they had over Zoom, and said they were a big part of what brought them together. He said, ”Being part of the club looks like diversity and inclusion.”