Meet the Black Student Union

group photo from 2019 black student union "Black to School BBQ"

At Case Western Reserve University, we’re proud of our student organizations which offer students an opportunity to learn, lead and effect change.

This month, we connected with the Black Student Union.

Tell us about your organization.

The Black Student Union is an umbrella organization for: African American Society (Afro-Am), African Student Association (ASA), National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE), the Brotherhood, and the Sisterhood. The mission of the BSU is to act as an organization that unifies students and organization of the African Diaspora (names located above) on campus and upholds the following objectives:

  1. Fostering a welcome community for black students on campus
  2. Being involved in the local Cleveland community
  3. Acting as advocates in times of need
  4. Creating a strong network between black undergraduates, graduates, staff, and faculty     

Currently, our general body meetings are every Sunday from 6 to 7 p.m. ET. We host the Black to School BBQ at the beginning of the year to allow students the chance to meet new people, reconnect with friends, and enjoy good food. We also host Black Graduation, an event where families of Black students graduating can celebrate in their entirety since commencement only allows two tickets per family.

What's it like to be a member of your organization? 

“Being a member of BSU is like joining the family I never knew I was missing. It’s a welcoming environment where I’ve met people that have impacted my life tremendously in ways it may not have been otherwise. As an organization, they’ve inspired me, supported me, laughed with me, cried with me, and helped guide me through my college experience and for that I’m forever grateful.”  - Miquela Hampton ’23

“Being a member of BSU is knowing that I will always have a support system of people who want to see me succeed. There is no desire to be better than the next person, but to work together so that we can all grow and benefit as a community. As a Black student at a PWI, it is essential to have a group like the BSU so that when times get tough, it’s easy to find people who you can relate to. These are some of the best people I know and I hope more students get to see the love and acceptance that the BSU provides.” - Aliah Lawson ‘21

“The BSU is the support system I have always needed at Case. It’s a safe space to discuss our collective obstacles and receive immediate help. The best word to describe the BSU is family. We look out for each other, uplift each other, and most importantly joke around with each other. College can be draining and it’s really easy to get sucked up into the same routine and never truly sit back and just enjoy college. BSU allows for this space.” - Tameyah Scott ’22

“Honestly, being a part of BSU is a good time. In every conversation I know I will laugh and when I am having a rough day a family that I can reach out to.” - Okiemute Eyemaro ’22 

How can someone support or celebrate your organization?

Due to recent events that have once again placed the issue of systemic racism at the forefront, the BSU has been receiving numerous emails of support from our campus community and the Cleveland area. We want to thank everyone for the love and support that they have shown us these past few months. 

The main question that we are asked is how can we support the Black Student Union and the black community. First, come to our events. We love to see new faces that are eager to engage in conversations and learn. You can find more information about our upcoming events as well as the other black cultural groups events on Instagram and Facebook. Second, in the classroom and the workplace or with family and friends, we need to strive to hold others accountable for their actions and words that are disrespectful and harmful to the black community. While holding these conversations, be honest and willing to listen so we can all positively progress. 

Is there anything else CWRU should be sure to know about your organization?

This year, we are hosting a dialogue series called “Liberation.” Each month has a theme. In October, we are discussing law and politics. Please join us for our event about the ballot. Have you ever been confused by the language on the ballot? Who are representatives that are important whom we often ignore? We will also be discussing Black Republicans later in the month. In November, we will be discussing finance. We will have a Financial Literacy Conference and a panel discussion about Black Entrepreneurship. Please be on the lookout for more information about these events. We look forward to seeing you there!

Which student group or organization would you like to see featured next? 

Middle East Cultural Association!