Sunday, May 19, 2024

SA Senate, BSU debate $866


By Kamiko Chamble

The Student Association Senate and a club requesting funding had a two-hour argument over $866 in the Senate’s meeting April 16.

The SA Senate approved requests for funding the Black Onyx: The Black Student Union’s Freaknik BBQ taking place today, April 26. This was also the SA’s first joint meeting between the SA Executive Council and Senate. 

The SA Senate originally approved $2,200 of BSU’s request for $3,066. BSU members said they felt wronged by the amount that they were receiving because without this money they wouldn’t be able to host their annual event. The club representatives also said they were aware the Senate had more money to offer. 

BSU President Shaniah Fairweather, Event Planner Zanaeja Dandy and Historian Sydney Wise all came to the Senate meeting to stand up for themselves and their club so they can host the event.

This ask caused a debate in the meeting. The issue senators Atmaja Addanki and Shahad Monir had was that they wanted to save SA’s additional allocations for other clubs in case they needed it last-minute, knowing that there are two weeks left in the semester to request funding.

Senator Naomi Adebayo, who is also a member of Black Onyx, advocated for the club. Fairweather said the club needed the entire $3,066 to make this event happen, because the $2,200 will cover only the price of the food from Chartwells. The rest of the money that BSU is requesting will cover the expenses for the DJ, the photographer, the performer, and the T-shirts offered. BSU not only requested money from the SA but also from the Office for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion.


Kamiko Chamble

The Student Association deliberates funding for the Black Student Union April 16.


The members of BSU argued strongly because Freaknik is an annual event. Black Onyx’s events bring in big crowds. Discussing BSU’s request, both the club members and senators were cutting each other off, rolling their eyes, raising their voices and making side comments. 

While the SA and the BSU members were going back and forth, Coordinator of Clubs and Organizations Sarah Feingold referenced a Cardinal Points article about the Senate’s meeting March 29. The article described Adebayo in a similar situation to this, but she was on the opposite side from where she stood now. Feingold then called Adebayo a hypocrite, saying she’s going back on her original words. 

Steve Matthews, dean of students and adviser to the SA Executive Council, intervened, telling everyone to keep it professional and to focus on the matter at hand.

Two and a half hours later, after all the back and forth, the SA Senate came to the agreement of giving BSU the full $3,066.

The BBQ is the closing event for BSU’s C4 Week College Challenge Campaign, an annual event dating back to 2015. During the C4 Challenge, Black Onyx uses the week to host a different event each day. 

This year BSU held “Ghetto to Urban” on Monday; “Cancel Culture,” where they discussed different celebrities and whether they should be canceled based on their actions, on Tuesday; “Are You Smart Enough to Be a Student Leader?” on Wednesday; and on Thursday they hosted “Does it Glow?” where they discussed sexual activities and played games. All of the events were hosted in Yokum Hall at 8 p.m. Finally, today BSU is hosting a Freaknik BBQ at 3 p.m. on Kent Hall’s basketball court. 

- Advertisment -spot_img