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Club Corner: Black Culture Society

Black Culture Society Executive Board: Shamall Joseph, Jayla Arthur, Chantel Detreville, Nyla Ringgold-Floyd, and Juwayriya Abdul-Hadi

Educating and Accepting

The Black Culture Society is a club on campus that focuses on educating all students as well as giving black students on campus a place to go where they feel welcomed and accepted. Even though the focus of this club is on black culture and black history, any student is welcome to join.

Madelyn Rodriguez, the Executive Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, stated that the club works to “provide a resource [and] a safe space for people to be who they are.”

Jayla Arthur, a sophomore secondary education major and the Vice President feels the club is very close-knit, stating, “Anybody that would come here would definitely feel like they gained a spot or a position in a family.”

The Black Culture Society meets every other Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. in the Multicultural Center. Meetings look different every week, depending on the theme, and often include games, discussions, activities, speakers, and more, all with a focus on learning about black culture.

Getting Involved

In addition to biweekly meetings, the Black Culture Society puts on a number of events throughout the school year. On Saturday, February 17th, the club, along with the Multicultural Center, will be presenting the 25th Annual Sankofa Conference. This event will include a keynote presentation by Marvin Worthy, who is the founder and CEO of Worthy Consulting and Training. On February 28th, BCS and a few other clubs will be sponsoring the men’s and women’s basketball games. They are also planning a cultural fashion show, a Black History Month wax museum, and a love event on Valentine’s Day. Check out some of the upcoming events here.

For students who would like to get involved with this club, there is an Instagram account for students to follow. In addition, they welcome any interested student to attend their meetings and events.

Shamall Joseph, a senior accounting major and the President of BCS, spoke about the future of the club, stating, “We are trying to get a bigger audience and are trying to reach out to the whole campus instead of one specific group of people.” Joseph also expressed that they hope to host more speakers, go on trips, and collaborate with other organizations on campus.

Looking back on his time in the club, Joseph stated, “My high school was basically all black people, so when I came here, it was definitely a culture shock. I was looking for places where I could fit in and be myself, and BCS was there.” He goes on to explain that he decided to become the president of the club because he saw it starting to fall apart last year, and he wanted to give the freshmen the experience he had when he came to Bloomsburg.

When reflecting on her involvement with BCS, Arthur explained that she was a part of the Black Student Union at her high school and loved it, so she wanted to join a similar club in college. She then stated, “I decided to be in a leadership position because I just loved it so much and I felt like there were so many things that I could do to spice the club up.”

When asked what the club brings, Joseph replied that he believes this club brings diversity to Bloomsburg, which is something the university prides itself on promoting. He also expressed that because some of the BCS events attract high school students, having this club allows those students to see that they could fit in well here.

Arthur agreed with this, stating, “I think BCS definitely shines a light on Bloomsburg’s acceptance of anybody and wherever they come from.”

Joseph also wants to make sure students know that “although the article is on BCS, there are many different [organizations] that do the same thing we do.” Some examples of these clubs include: NCNW, NAACP, TGIF, ASA, Impact, and the BU Gospel Choir.

Rodriguez also points out that when students feel like they belong, they are more likely to stay at the university and therefore graduate, which then gives them “opportunities to flourish.” Arthur hopes the club can grow in the coming years because “the more students we get to know about us, the more we will be able to continue to keep that legacy going on, even after our time here.”

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Maddie Bolger, Multimedia Journalist

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