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  • Writer's pictureMICHAEL CURRAN & MIKAYLA BOKIS

Black Student Association celebrates their 3rd annual gala

President Eric Tuner speaks to the audience at the Black Student Association. Photo courtesy of Mikayla Bokis

On February 24 the Black Student Association held their 3rd annual gala. 


The planning had been in the works since the beginning of January under President and senior curriculum and instruction major Jazmine Stephens and Vice President Damali Waugh. Waugh, a sophomore fashion merchandising and management major said, “The planning went pretty well. It was mainly me and Jazmine going back and forth almost every day, just talking about how we were going to do this, how we were going to do that. She also talked with some of our e-board members because everyone had specific tasks to do before the gala.”


Waugh spoke about the variety of entertainment they had this year. “We had one of my brother's friends who performed for us. We had another one of our BSA members, Delvarie Moore, come to dance again,” Waugh said “It was catered by a local Jamaican restaurant and we had a couple of faculty come as well.” 


In addition to the entertainment being provided, the theme for the gala was “Masked in Melanin” as well as a Black and Gold Masquerade. The BSA gala was also open to the public to attend. 


“This year, we did $10 for entry. Last year it was $15, but I tried to make it more cost effective for everybody,” said Stephens. 


Darius Vincent, a sophomore sports management major and the communication director of BSA, was impressed by how the gala went. “I didn’t expect the turnout that the gala itself got. Overall, I was impressed with most things, such as the way that we were able to do things on the fly and on the spur of the moment,” Vincent said.


“I want to especially shout out the performers that we had and the emcees of the night, and I can’t forget our great and very own DJ Prashant,'' Vincent said. “I would like to thank everyone who showed up and showed out.”


The gala isn’t the only thing BSA has in store for this year, as they have been busy planning other events for this semester. BSA is planning on working with other clubs on campus such as Studio1851 and ALPFA (Association of Latino Professionals for America). 


“We also are collaborating with Studio1851 to create shirts. One shirt that's specifically just for the e-board, and other shirts that people can go and buy in the studio. So we're working closely with them. And since I'm now part of the studio class, it's easy for us to get with them,” Waugh says.


There was also a dining hall takeover on February 21, which the group also held last year. 


Vincent thinks that BSA is a purposeful club and organization to have on campus. “I think BSA is important to have because it brings a sense of diversity to campus that we don't often see. BSA is one of those other clubs that just brings a sense of togetherness. Literally anyone can be a part of BSA and help out.” Vincent said. 

Provost Dr. Chrystal Porter delivers her message to the crowd. Photo courtesy of Mikayla Bokis

Waugh added, “I would say just for any students of color, minority students, just to have a safe space to come together and create bonds with other people.”


“Lasell is a predominantly white institution and when I first started here, there weren't many students of color in general, but now especially there's a lot more students of color on campus.’’ Stephens said. 


“[Black Student Association] Creates a space for us to not only get to know each other, but also express things that are unique to our cultures, whether that's African culture, Caribbean culture, Black American culture, that wouldn't necessarily be expressed otherwise. That's what BSA is really about,” Stephens said. 


If you are interested in being involved with BSA, the organization plans to meet twice a month with the general council and are currently coming up with dates and times for these meetings. For more information go to their Instagram which is @lasellbsa.

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