As the 2023 spring semester kicks off, many students may not be aware of the variety of campus events available to everyone. University offices and recognized student organizations aim to provide inclusive spaces where many students can get involved.
Mostly, it all starts with Seal, Student Engagement and Leadership, who give student clubs, the Student Government Association, and the Campus Activities and Programming Board the ability to function and grow.
SEaL Assistant Director Raina N. Johnson knows the campus environment the office wants to create as she oversees all student activities, events, and organizations.
“Anything they need, I am their resource, so I don’t directly advise all of them but I am a general resource for them to come to,” said Johnson. “A lot of students don’t know what it’s like to put on very large-scale events, so I am here to help them through that entire process.”
Black History is February’s highlight
Cabrini’s Black History Month celebration has many events coming from the Office of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging.
It kicked off with three events earlier this month: The Feb. 8. “How Do We Get Free? Part 1” discussion that took place in Iadarola Lecture Hall where a conversation centered around the socio-spiritual foundation and the future of justice, equity, and liberation took place, the 11 a.m. Blackout Poetry event on Feb. 10 in the BE-Lounge, and the trip to the National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, D.C. was available to students on Feb. 11.
This was just the start and more will follow, as emails that were sent to all students from Cabrini announcements, gives details on what people can expect.
Wednesday, Feb. 15 at 3:15 p.m. brings us a Table Talk event in the BE-Lounge, where the Black Student Union is welcoming a conversation about what it means to be a Black student at a Predominantly White Institution. On Thursday, Feb. 16, the 6:00 p.m. the “Melanin Within” event in the Grace Hall Atrium provides a space where student designers, stylists, and entrepreneurs can showcase their artistry.
On Tuesday, Feb. 21, a screening of the Academy Award-Winning documentary, “I Am Not Your Negro”, about James Baldwin, one of the most prolific thinkers of the 20th century, will take place at 5:30 p.m. in the Widener Lecture Hall. The “How Do We Get Free? Part 2” event takes place on Wednesday, Feb. 22 at noon and will present a series of workshops that respond to the ongoing challenges of Black Liberation. Lastly, the Black Student Union Fashion Show, “Drip or Drown!” works the runway on Thursday, Feb. 23 in the Grace Hall Atrium at 7:30 p.m.
CAP Board and uplifting student events
As the advisor of CAP Board too, Johnson is “involved with pretty much everything CAP Board, from recruitment to training — to training CAP Board to put on events on events more independently for themselves.”
“We have a lot coming up when it comes to the CAP Board; we’re definitely heavy in recruitment right now, because a lot of the members are graduating,” said Johnson. “CAP Board has been very event-heavy this past year just really trying to build Cabrini back up to what it was like pre-COVID.”
With the help of the CAP Board and campus events from diverse student organizations can be planned, funded, and facilitated. Reminders of events are frequently sent to students’ emails.
With the number of diverse clubs and organizations that are a part of Cabrini, such as the Black Student Union, Jewish Student Union, Muslim Student Association, Catholic Relief Services, Spectrum, and the Student Government Association, many events are sure to come that aren’t just activities, but that are also educational.
“A lot of students will get a better connection to a campus if there are different events and things to get involved with,” said Johnson. “Having activities, clubs, and organizations will really help the student life feel like a campus is home and somewhere they enjoy being.”