SGA Diversity and Inclusion Candidates University News

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As Black History Month draws to a close in days, it is critical that the SLU community be educated and reflect on the past and present implications of the injustices our society has inflicted on marginalized communities. Most importantly, it is essential to hold the university accountable for ensuring the highest level of equality and inclusion for its students, emphasizing that SLU takes appropriate steps to empower and protect vulnerable communities, while actively striving to prevent all forms of hatred and injustice. to occur.

The Saint Louis University Student Government Association (SGA) strives to create a space for students to participate in representative student government, as they provide an open forum for dialogue and voice regarding student student opinions regarding University affairs. The electoral debates will take place on February 24, while the vote for the executive office will take place on Wednesday, March 2.

The position of SGA Vice President of Diversity and Inclusion is responsible for assisting the Board of Directors in creating SGA policies while actively working with SLU faculty and students to ensure that these standards are implemented. Additionally, the Vice President for Diversity and Inclusion develops programs that foster a safe, diverse, and ethical environment in which students can succeed, spread their knowledge, and expand beyond their horizons.

This year’s SGA Diversity and Inclusion nominees are Marquis D. Govan and Nicholas Brown.

Marquis D. Govan is a first-year social work and sociology student. He is currently involved with Residence Hall Association, SGA, African American Male Scholars, Martin Luther King Scholars, Billikens for Reproductive Justice and SLU Social Work. Her post-graduation plans are to earn her master’s degree in social work and attend law school.

Nicholas (Nick) Brown is a junior economics student. He is currently involved with several campus organizations such as Young Americans for Freedom, College Republicans, St. Edmund Campion Society, Students for Life, SLU Thomistic Institute, and SLU’s Intercollegiate Studies Institute. After graduating, he hopes to attend law school and work with a nonprofit organization to inspire students to stand up for freedom of expression and speech.

Nick Baker:

What are your motivations for taking this position?

“True diversity and inclusion in an academic setting requires people with different viewpoints and perspectives to encounter the thoughts and ideas of others in an environment in which we are all comfortable supporting and challenging the everyone’s point of view. In order to achieve this goal, we must ensure that freedom of speech and expression is respected and extended on campus.

What personal meanings does diversity and inclusion have for you?

“I think that’s basically all I said in my motivations for wanting the job.”

When did you first discover these concepts? What were your first reactions? What are your proposals for dealing with injustice?

“Honestly, I don’t remember when I first heard about diversity and inclusion and what my reactions were, so I don’t think I can respond effectively.”

What are your proposals for dealing with injustice?

“In order to address injustice at SLU and beyond, we must embrace the persuasive approach of seeking to change hearts and change minds through awareness and engagement.”

How do you respond to people who simply don’t care or turn a blind eye to injustice?

“As students of a Catholic university, we are called to defend the dignity of each person. When we encounter an injustice, we must take steps to ensure that the situation is rectified.

Marquis Govan:

What are your motivations for wanting to take on this position?

“I have a strong passion for racial, social and economic justice that guides me every day. I love our university and especially our great STL community. I think it’s really important that we create a campus environment where everything the world feels safe and welcome. I want to make sure that black students and students of color know that their lives are valued. I want trans and queer students to feel that their identity is celebrated. Additionally, I want stand with a large portion of the identifying women on this campus who report being sexually assaulted or harassed. In short, no matter who you are, who you love, how you pray or how you identify, I want SLU to be a place for you too and I will fight to make sure that is your reality.

What personal meanings does diversity and inclusion have for you?

“Diversity and inclusion is about creating spaces where everyone feels accepted and welcome. It’s really about making sure people can bring their whole being into a space and feel comfortable where they are. I see this as a chance to enrich everyone’s perspectives by bringing tons of multi-faceted perspectives that will only work to help us learn from each other. The will behind these two concepts is to build a world where there is truly justice for all.

When did you first discover these concepts? What were your first reactions? What are your proposals for dealing with injustice?

“I started very young. I was involved in racial justice movements right here at STL after the murders of Michael Brown, Vonderrit Myers and Anthony Lamar Smith. I organized with people around the equal access to quality education that is so often determined by one’s zip code. I have also worked with several advocacy groups on issues of bodily autonomy, labor rights, housing, and criminal justice reform. I think dealing with injustice requires a movement of people who understand that change happens when people come together to confront systematic rot. My ways of dealing with injustices are to stand up for the interests of individuals, but to see the big picture in that most if not all issues of injustice are the result of widespread institutional disregard for marginalized peoples .

How do you respond to people who simply don’t care or turn a blind eye to injustice?

“It is a privilege to look away from injustice. Turning a blind eye to injustice says a lot about his character. Although for those unaware of the plight of the marginalized, we must all respond collectively by mobilizing and organizing for a future for which the idea of ​​doing so is inadmissible.

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