In my experience, the spring semester has always hit Cornell’s Black community fast. February is Black History Month, and, for better or worse, student organizations serving the Black community are arguably most active during this first full month of the semester: Organizations within the BSU umbrella hosted over 20 events in February 2023. BSU’s theme for this past Black History Month was “Black 2 The Future,” as a nod to the aesthetic and philosophy of Afrofuturism. We’ve done a lot of thinking about the future of our organization, and the ramifications that it might have for Black people at Cornell and beyond.
Pollack announced the task force in September, among other initiatives, after a cluster of incidents that brought national attention to Cornell’s climate and led Black Students United to briefly occupy a campus building.
Each year, a group is recognized for it efforts to increase diversity and social acceptance with the Perkins Prize. Announced last week, the 2008 prize has been awarded to Black Students United for their sponsorship of the “Questions Out of a Hat” event.
According to Christine Forester of the Office of the Dean of Students — which administers the award — there were 11 groups considered this year. Each member of the selection committee rated all of the applications on a scale of 1 to 5 in the categories of participation, sustainability of effort, promotion of values and enhancement of abilities.