*Editor’s Note: It was stated in the Jan 26. issue of the Nubian Message that, “ After completing thorough research of various BBSA chapters such as those of Wake Forest University, Columbia University and UNC-Greensboro, [Delton] Green brought BBSA to NCSU in August of 2013.” To clarify, BBSA was formed at N.C. State after a “State of the Black Community in Poole” meeting held by Diversity Coordinator, Rhoshaunda Breeden. In May of 2013, Pommy Anu, an accounting student proposed the idea of creating a NCSU chapter of BBSA to Breeden, who wrote the organization’s constitution and applied for it to become an official campus organization. We will run a correction in the 2/5/14 issue of the Nubian Message.
Eboni Bryson | Staff Writer
Last week the Afrikan American Student Advisory Council (AASAC) welcomed the Black Business Student Association (BBSA) to its roster. BBSA provides minority students an organization that does more than just focus on one area of business, but encompasses all business majors.
Delton Green, a senior in Business Administration, serves as President of the organization. After completing thorough research of various BBSA chapters such as those of Wake Forest University, Columbia University and UNC-Greensboro, Green brought BBSA to NCSU in August of 2013.
After becoming an official campus organization, Green along with members of the BBSA executive-board began pursuing membership within AASAC. “AASAC has done a great job [this year] as far as marketing,” said Green. “As a new organization, it was really important to us to try to get our name out and to let everybody know this is what we are and this is what we’re doing.”
Before being accepted into AASAC, BBSA presented to members of AASAC at its Jan. 14 meeting. During the presentation, BBSA shared its vision and purpose as well as how its mission correlates with AASAC’s goal and contributes to the Black community. According to Marshall Anthony, AASAC Chair, AASAC organizations reap many benefits from membership, including access to a “central hub of Afrikan or African American organizations at N.C. State.”
AASAC members raised as one point of concern that BBSA would be too similar to the National Association of Black Accountants (NABA), but according to Green, BBSA’s alumni sector is one of the few ways its differentiated from the Accounting organization. “With its alumni sector, BBSA keeps in touch with alumni to reach out for help,” said Green. The two organizations have worked together in the past and are currently preparing a program for Black History Month.
“I’m very proud of what [AASAC] did last semester and this semester we’re going to raise the bar,” said Anthony. He is also looking forward to further progress throughout the semester, and is looking forward to seeing what comes of AASAC and its new addition.
Duke University continues its celebration of 50 years of Black Students with the NAACP’s Ben Jealous
Chris Hart-Williams | Staff Writer
Former NAACP president, Ben Jealous gave a speech at Duke Chapel Sunday that stirred listeners as he praised catalysts for change such as the Civil Rights Movement and its leaders, most notably Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. for his role in making the desegregation of Duke University and schools alike possible.
Jealous was the keynote speaker at Duke’s annual King celebration service. The service also celebrated the 50th anniversary of King’s 1963 “I Have a Dream” speech and the first African-American students at Duke.It was three weeks after King’s renowned speech that Duke welcomed its first African-American undergraduate students.
“They must have had the speech ringing in their ears,” said Duke President, Dr. Richard Brodhead during his remarks at the celebration.
Duke opened its doors to five African-Americans in 1963, two whom were male and three females, all making history and forever changing the university.
The theme of the celebration was “50 Years: Backwards or forward?”and Jealous spoke much of the 1960s’ Civil Rights Movement and its leaders like King who were active in the movement for racial equality.
But even with strides gained, such as the desegregation of historically all white schools like Duke, according to Jealous, a need for change in the United States still exists. “We got what we asked for but we lost what we had,” said Jealous just before he ended his speech.
Jealous mostly directed his message to students and youth. He called for a new movement and a call to act, mobilize and rally for change like African-Americans in past generations. He said “There was a time when fighting and struggling was not an option.” Jealous urged everyone in attendance to take action especially in a state like N.C. where policies he considers “unjust” have been passed by the Republican-led legislature in recent months.
“Commit yourself to change the world before you die…don’t take more than a month,” said Jealous. “[N.C.] has put the struggle of justice on the map.”
Jealous said African-Americans are living in a nation where particular groups have “hijacked” state government and are “sending us backward.”
Marcus Benning, president of the Black Student Alliance at Duke University spoke similar words at the celebration. “Action is what we need now more than ever…just ask the N.C. legislator,” said Benning.
According to Benning while the nation has made progress by passing monumental legislation since the Civil Rights struggle, there still remains a lot more to be done moving forward. “We’ve moved forward during the past 50 years in terms of legislation, but the goals of landmark pieces of legislation like the Civil Rights Act and the Voting Rights Act – respect for culture and difference being one of those goals, have not been fully actualized,” said Benning.”
In 1963 Duke was one of the last major universities to welcome African-American undergraduates, after both N.C. State and UNC-Chapel had done so years before.
UNC-Chapel Hill was first when it enrolled three African-American students in 1955 and N.C. State followed a year later with enrolling four in 1956.
Though the last to desegregate, today Duke has the highest percentage of African-Americans compared to N.C. State and UNC-Chapel Hill, according to Forbes.com.
African-Americans make up 9.66 percent of Duke’s total student body population, 9.25 percent of UNC-Chapel Hill’s and just 6.8 percent at N.C. State.
The Wolfpack chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) has reactivated and will hold its first general body meeting next Tuesday.
Last semester, the chapter underwent a revitalization period, not taking in new members in order to focus on addressing internal needs. “You can’t invite people in from outside unless you know the inside is all cleaned up and ready to go,” said Lauryn Collier, in the Aug. 28 issue of the Nubian Message. Collier became Interim President of the chapter over the summer, after the status of the organization was left undetermined.
During the fall semester, the chapter hosted fundraisers and programs during their Fall Revival Week, as well as teamed up with Young Invincibles for the Student Impact Project, an opportunity for students to learn about higher education affordability. This semester, Collier and other members look forward to sponsoring events that reflect the iniatives and mission of the national organization. The Wolfpack chapter also hopes to attract underclassmen students. “Many students involved with the chapter, including myself, are graduating seniors. The chapter is in need of leadership that can continue in the coming years,” said Collier.
The first NAACP general body meeting will be held Tues. Jan. 21 at 6:00 p.m. in SAS 1220. All students and faculty are welcome to attend.
Aaron Jones | Correspondent
Last month, Beyoncé Knowles-Carter shocked both fans and the music industry alike when she unexpectedly released Beyoncé, her record-breaking fifth studio album. Exploring themes of explicit sexuality, beauty and motherhood, the artist shares her interpretation of feminism in an visually unconventional format.
The surprise album’s 14 songs and 17 corresponding videos sparked frenzy amongst fans across the world by employing a technique that is unheard of in the music industry. The release of an album with no promotion or release of any singles. In today’s digital age, Knowles-Carter also managed to combine the talents of an incredible ensemble. Her album included including heavy-hitters such as Justin Timberlake, Timbaland, and Pharrell Williams as producers, legendary video directors Hype Williams and Jake Nava, as well as Grammy-nominated songwriters The-Dream and Sia. In spite of the use of these ‘big names’ in the industry she was still able to avoid the early leak of her project. This was the singer’s plan for the album all along – wanting to release the project in entirety as a “surprise.”
The bombshell of an album quickly generated massive success and critical acclaim. Three days after its release, Beyoncé rose to the top spot on the Billboard 200 chart, sold 617,000 copies in the U.S. and 828,773 copies worldwide. This snagged the songstress the largest sales week for a woman in 2013, as well as the fastest-selling title ever globally, according to Billboard. USA Today credited the album as “a feast for the eyes and the ears.”
Along with its commercial success, Beyoncé has also stirred up its share of controversy. The album, which comes with an “explicit content” warning, surely is the singer’s most sexually explicit work. Knowles-Carter paints racy images with risqué lyrics as she raps alongside husband Jay-Z on the hip-hop influenced track “Drunk in Love” and channels Too Short and E-40 on “Partition.” She also shows off her versatility as she sultrily harmonizes with Frank Ocean on “Superpower,” and showcases an entrancing falsetto on “No Angel.” With her approach, the singer has a way of adding a combined level of sophistication and eroticism with songs like “Rocket” written by Miguel, and is more vulnerable than ever, being vocal about the importance of self-acceptance in “Pretty Hurts”, written by Sia. The album’s overt sexuality has also generated discussion on the pro-feminism messages the superstar is sending.
Throughout the album the singer addresses social issues experienced by women such as marriage, motherhood, sexuality, and beauty – shamelessly exposing herself as a woman with power that is not dependent on a man. She also highlights the need for camaraderie amongst women. This can especially be seen in “Flawless,” a track that samples a portion of a 2013 speech “We Should All Be Feminists,” by Nigerian author and feminist Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. Adichie explicitly defines a feminist as “the person who believes in the social, political and economic equality of the sexes.”
Critics are saying the inclusion of this sample does not make the singer a feminist. In an essay for IndieWire, media analyst and feminist Tanya Steele wrote, “I understand the identification with Beyoncé as a beautiful and fierce Black woman. Let’s celebrate that. What I don’t understand is how her actions translate to Feminism. Historically, Black women are known for being two things: angry and libidinous. How does Beyoncé present a challenge to the latter?”
Some feminists like Steele argue that the artist’s efforts are counterproductive. “Now, there are these women coming into the conversation who have never read anything about feminism and they’re like, ‘she’s a grown woman. She has a husband. She can do what she wants with her body.’ So I have to walk them through to perhaps a different way of thinking about the images,” said Steele. Others, such as Kim Gandy former president of the National Organization for Women, are glad the ideas of feminism have been imparted to mainstream audiences: “I’m excited that millions of people around the world are gonna hear ‘We Should All Be Feminists,’ coming from someone they love and trust: Beyoncé.” Writer Samhita Mukhopadhyay said “The majority of women that need feminism listen to Beyoncé,” and is also in favor of the album’s unconventional appeal.
In a high-profile position like Beyoncé’s, her work inevitably will cause this kind of polarity with social issues. One thing is evident – with a historic album making her the first woman to have her first five studio albums to go No. 1, the success of her Mrs. Carter World Tour and Forbes reporting 2014 to be the singer’s best fiscal year ever, she seems to be defending the title of “Queen Bey,” solidifying herself as a force in the industry.