BSU observes BHM

Kenzie Schroeder, Staff writer

February is a month notable for its Hallmark holiday of Valentine’s Day and its dedication as Black History Month. This year Moralyzer, a social media activism platform developed by Mercyhurst grad student Arseniy Sklyarov, and the Black Students for Unity (BSU) are planning an array of events to celebrate the month of February.

For the BSU, Black History Month will be expanding past the designated month of February. Janiece Withers, president of BSU, created the Black His-tory Series to help spread black history awareness in February and beyond. Events of this series will take place throughout the whole semester to dedicate enough time to every piece included and as a way to break the stigma of only celebrating and discussing Black people for one month out of the whole year.

Over the month, BSU is partnering with other clubs and organizations on campus. On Feb. 15 Withers will be participating in a panel discussion set to start at 7:00 pm. Along-side Withers will be Professor Sherez Mohammad, Ph.D.

On Feb. 22 Withers will also be joining two professors from campus to watch and discuss the movie “12 Years a Slave.” BSU and Parkhurst have started a partnership to collect rec-ipes from Black students and staff on campus to showcase Black culture meals at the Bravo in the Grotto Commons. Students can find the link to send in their recipes on the HUB.

On Feb. 27, BSU, MAC/SAC, and the Lumen are collaborating on an event celebrating Black voices in poetry and music. At this event, students can listen to rap and poetry performed by other students. Lastly, in the last week of Black History Month, BSU will host a social media challenge called the “42 Challenge.” This event is meant to raise awareness of police brutality and social injustices we see in our community on the global stage and in sports.

Outside of the events this month, Black Students for Unity conducts weekly meetings on Mondays at 4 p.m. During these meetings, members discuss popular shows, Black influencers and educate club members on Black society and normalize Black struggles and achievements. Meetings are open to all students and touch on topics relating to how to be an effective and supportive ally and virtually join in the conversation as a white student. Students should also keep their eyes open for Moralyzer’s upcoming app which is scheduled to launch in three months’ time.

Moralyzer is already up and running as a platform for activism, allowing Mercyhurst students and young people worldwide to use social media for good. Moralyzer has entered the business of creating partnerships with minority-owned businesses in order to give their customers 10% off their products.

One specific partnership consumers can look out for is with the ‘This Is It Network,’ host-ed by Cheldin. The network is a global, female, and minority TV network owned and operated by Cheldin, a news reporter to the network that focuses her stories on Black and female entrepreneurs.

One of the highlighted articles on the network’s site is binge-worthy shows to watch for Black History Month. Mercyhurst students should also look out for Moralyzer’s up-coming marketing internship positions. These positions will be available for all students of color and will be coming out within the next few months. Happy Black History Month, Lakers!