Black Student Union returns to campus

A reorganized multicultural club is striving to give black students a voice at Linfield’s McMinnville campus.
The Black Student Union held its second meeting of the year Sept. 20 to discuss possible future club activities and leadership roles. About a dozen students attended.
Club co-president junior Monterill Anderson decided to restart the Black Student Union because of his past difficulties adjusting to college life at Linfield, among other reasons.
“It’s obvious that there’s not a lot of black students out there,” he said. “And, I just wanted to create a safe environment where we could talk about issues relating to us and get new students adapted to the lifestyle around campus.
“There’s also a bias about what African-American culture is, so the club’s also for people who want to find out about what it’s really like.”
Membership in the Black Student Union is not restricted to black students. Everyone is welcome to join regardless of racial or ethnic background.
More than 20 students attended the Black Student Union’s first meeting on Aug. 30. In both meetings, discussion revolved around what club members wanted the Black Student Union to accomplish.
One of the top priorities for most members was creating a strong voice for black students around campus. Another popular suggestion was reaching out to young black people in the community and speaking to them about the importance of going to college.
The club also plans to do volunteer work for certain local organizations. During the meeting, Anderson said the club could be walking and bathing dogs for the Humane Society in the near future.
At one point, the Black Student Union was known on campus for its annual barbecue and talent show. In 2001, the club also started a successful mentoring program with about 20 biracial families and their children in the McMinnville area, according to the News-Register’s archives.
However, the Black Student Union gradually faded out because of a lack of participation.
Anderson and fellow co-president Tanika Finch hope to keep that from happening again.
For more information about the Black Student Union or future meetings, contact Monterill Anderson at moanders@linfield.edu or Tanika Finch at tfinch@linfield.edu.
The club is in the process of obtaining a permanent charter from the Associated Students of Linfield College Senate.
Max Milander
For the Review

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