By Maddie Gee | Reporter
Black Student Welcome lit up Baylor’s campus Thursday in the Barfield Drawing Room. There were booths promoting the numerous organizations on campus, tons of old and new faces. From singing along to Kirk Franklin with “Heavenly Voices” to learning more about opportunities available to students, Black Student Welcome, Mosaic Mixer and the other Mosaic Week events are some of the first events of the year that students have the opportunity to participate in.
Why does “Mosaic Week” on Baylor’s campus matter?
Grosse Point sophomore Brianna Phelps has attended Black Student Welcome since her freshman year.
“Considering at Baylor we are already a minority, it is important that we have spaces made for us and for our success … just so we feel like we have a place to go where we can be comfortable” Phelps said. “Last year as a freshman when I went to Black Student Welcome, I felt like it was my awakening of what Baylor really could be for me.”
Minority students attending a Primarily White Institution (PWI) can feel uncomfortable at times on campus, sometimes leading to protest. According to this ABC article, the world is currently on fire with racial tensions that are consistently getting worse, and Baylor is not immune, as its campus has had its own personal struggles with diversity.
According to a poll recently done by NBC News, 64 percent of Americans said that racism is still a major problem in American society and politics.
Many have not forgotten Kappa Sigma’s “Cinco de Drinko” party or when a student pushed Natasha Nkhama off the sidewalk in an effort to “make America great again.” Instead of having a dialogue of love, some students have decided it is easier to spew hate by committing hateful acts like the ones previously stated. Most of these acts never make the news. That is why “Mosaic Week” is so important for many students. Students in attendance at this week’s events said it gives them the opportunity to feel accepted and lifted up by others.
“I think it is good to highlight the diversity on this campus to the rest of the community … We want you to celebrate your heritage and embrace the heritage of others,” said Geoffrey Griggs, assistant director of Multicultural Affairs. “We want to encourage everyone, not just the students that identify with our multicultural groups, to show up but everybody across Baylor.”
Even though the majority of Baylor’s students are white, there are numerous other cultures and races represented. While many celebrate their personall culture, Griggs and the Multicultural Affairs staff are encouraging students to be open to learning about the cultures of others.
In the midst of an atmosphere of conflict and tension, “Mosaic Week” gives students the platform to be able to learn about and join organizations that promote a wide range of multicultural organizations.