Jones Leads New Executive Board as BSU Prepares for 2018-19 School Year

Emily Kenny, Editor-in-Chief

Buena Vista University has seen several new clubs and organizations form in the past few years. Among these clubs is the BVU Black Student Union. The BSU was founded last year and will continue this year under the new leadership of Emerald Jones, along with her fellow executive board members.  

Her executive board consists of Jhareese Walker, vice president; Danielle Hill, treasurer; Destiny Einerwold, secretary; and Daniel Walker and Nyajuok Lam, the advertising and public relations managers. 

Jones says her executive board works well as a team. Each executive board member brings something different, yet essential to the table.  

Jones says that she and Jhareese Walker have been working together as a dynamic duo. They have built a great partnership through their work together as resident assistants, and now the BSU. Einerwold is a very organized person, which helps keep Jones from stressing about details. Having Einerwold as a part of their team also shows other students who want to join the group that members do not have to be black to join the student union; anyone and everyone is welcome.  

Hill has served as the treasurer for two school years now, and she also assists Jones in relieving stress by handling the organization’s funds. Daniel Walker creates awesome videos and advertisements for the group. Lam runs the organization’s social media which is on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and Snapchat (@buenavistabsu).

“I definitely say that all of us together are the dream team, we’re all very knowledgeable in the position that we have, and they make things a lot easier on me so I love my executive board,” says Jones.  

The BSU already has many events planned for the upcoming school year. Their second event for the school year will be on Sept. 20. The BSU has partnered with SAB to bring a comedian to campus, along with more events coming up this semester.  

“In October, we are actually going to  have a costume cultural appropriation ACES event because it’s Halloween. I always say a lot of the times people  can do offensive thing, and one of the reasons they are probably doing this is because they just don’t know that that’s offensive,” says Jones. “So, since we’re having that ACES, it gives us a chance to educate people on things that could be culturally offensive so that we have done our part to at least educate people on that.” 

Last semester, the BSU hosted two “Feed Your Soul” events. At this event they serve homemade plates of soul food prepared by the BSU members. Student and faculty can pay for a plate and pick it up during the event. Jones says those have been very popular with everyone on campus.  

“In November, there’s a diversity and inclusion week and BSU will be a part of that,” says Jones. “We will be having an ACES called The Evolution of Hip-hop, that will be pretty cool. We will be talking about the different decades of hip-hop and how it has changed throughout the years and talking about that genre of music, so you know that will be an ACES event.”  

For BSU members, the BSU will also be holding an in-house Thanksgiving dinner. Many students who are a part of the BSU are from out of state, so they will not go home over Thanksgiving. In December, the organization will be adopting a family through CAASA and will purchase gifts for the family during Christmas time.  

Jones says their BSU meetings are open to anyone who would like to be a part of the BSU. Anyone who is interested can also reach out to her via email.  

“We are a very welcoming group, and I hope that I can speak for the people of the group when I say that we try to make it a comfortable environment where it’s nice and fun and people can say as they want,” says Jones. “I like a lot of dialogue and discussion in our meetings in our topics that we’re talking about. So, when it comes to joining all you have to do is come.” 

Jones has many hopes for the semester leading the BSU. However, what she really hopes for is to build a better community on campus overall.  

“I think  community is such a big deal, especially on a campus where it’s just so small. Having that good community and people that you can lean on away from home is very important to me,” says Jones. “So, that’s my big hope is that the people that are there feel safe and welcome, and they just agree in wanting to build the community with the executive board. I also hope that we build the inclusivity on our campus as well as promoting diversity; that’s always something that we try to advocate for, and I say that not only with the BSU but with RAICES, MELT  and Alliance because that also counts as diversity. My hope is that we can expand the diversity and have an overall great year.”  

For more information on the BSU, you can reach out to Emerald Jones via email ([email protected]). They can also be contacted through Ebony King, their faculty advisor, or Jeremy Curry, their secondary faculty advisor.