University Park, IL,
17:11 PM

Black Student Union President shares upcoming events

Michelle Marshall

Michelle Marshall, President of the Black Student Union (BSU), hopes to bring Governors State University's (GSU) community together with Black History Month events.

Established to promote and uplift the voices of Black students on GSU's campus, BSU acknowledges the African American culture by celebrating its diversity, creativity and pride. 

Michelle, a Communication, Media and Performance graduate student said she finds the faculty and staff supportive and wants to share the feeling with others. She is excited to work with Dr. Phyllis West, Director of Social Justice Initiative, as staff advisor.

"Our long-term goals involve more student involvement and activities, being the dominating force on and off campus and molding BSU into what those who will come after us would be proud of,” said Michelle.

"Black/African American students are a huge presence on GSU’s campus and it’s important that we all feel supported, whatever that may look like. It’s important for me to help create new opportunities and open up new doors for students to have access to, even after my departure from GSU.” Following her time at GSU, Michelle is open to the possibilities of working where her passion guides her. Until then, Michelle is making the most of her role helping others at GSU.

With Black/African American students making up 34% of GSU's student body, about a third of the total students, Michelle wants to make an effort to establish some African American courses at GSU that run consistently every semester, connect with communities to bridge the gap between students and Black Student Unions, host events to get students connected with each other and other influential individuals, and listen to students' wishes to work towards meeting their needs.

To build a support system and network for students, Michelle shared that BSU has a few events planned for the next couple months. There will be a Drag Show on February 10, which BSU would like to network, collaborate, and invite members of the LGBTQ+ community, and a Valentine’s Day game show on February 17 for couples, friends, family, roommates, or any pair of two to test how well they know each other. There will also be a “BSU Presents Wild N’ Out” on the first Friday of March, where BSU and other organizations on campus will compete and play games like those on the tv show that inspired the event's name.

There is a possibility of more events in collaboration with other local Black Student Unions. BSU is currently connected with Prairie State College, University of St. Francis, Lewis University, and Joliet Junior College, with more to come. “We plan to join some of their events and community service work,” said Michelle. 

“I once read an African proverb that said ‘if you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.’ We can do some things alone, but we can do much more together," continued Michelle on the importance of collaborating with other BSUs. “We can serve the community at a greater capacity if we are one and we are unified.”

To learn more about these events and to RSVP, check out BSU's organization page.