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BWC holds first black student orientation

The Black Women’s Collective (BWC) held its first orientation for several new students on Sept. 4 called “What’s Up 101: Information for New Black Women at Mills.”

The morning event was held in the Faculty/Staff Lounge and welcomed several students with refreshments and pamphlets that included information on places of worship, hair and nail salons, Solidarity Lounge resources, and local markets.

“We wanted to provide quality information to new students,” said Jabrilla Carr, a senior and Co-Community Outreach Chair for BWC. She and several other club members had spent the first week of classes reaching out to new black students by promoting BWC events.

The student panel, moderated by Dean of Students Joi Lewis. (Morgan Ross)
The student panel, moderated by Dean of Students Joi Lewis. (Morgan Ross)

“It has been really fun, setting up and networking and meeting new students,” said sophomore Angelica Addison.

Dean of Students Joi Lewis attended the orientation and gave advice to new club members adjusting to life at Mills.

“I particularly liked the comment that Dr. Joi said about taking up space, that we don’t take up enough space,” said Angela Jones, a new graduate student in the MBA program. “She talked about how Mills is a safe place to take up space here.”

Lewis also facilitated a panel with four black community members who discussed their experiences at Mills and the challenges they experienced.

“I have met so many wonderful women at this school, and the relationships I have made at this school are relationships that I have never had before,” said Isis Blanchette, a junior who was describing what she loved most at Mills.

Black students at BWC orientation. (Morgan Ross)
Black students at BWC orientation. (Morgan Ross)

Nia King, a transfer student, also said, “I appreciate that there are so many resumers and parenting students, that this school does not specifically cater to only those out of high school.”

All students gave advice to the new students about joining student diversity projects to promote social justice on campus.

BWC holds meetings every Tuesday evening. Contact BWC President T’Sendenia Gage for more information.