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DOC Activism

Documentation and Historiography of Student Activism at the University of Puget Sound

Overview of the Black Student Union

The Black Student Union is a safe space for students of color and allies to engage the campus and Tacoma through our three pillars: community, solidarity and activism. We are passionate about creating an enjoyable and memorable experience through the celebration of personal identity and greater racial awareness.

December, 2014.

This year saw increased activism due to national movement for Black Lives Matter, following the death of Michael Brown and other unarmed black persons.

In response to these events, the BSU did a photo campaign protest #BlackOut for justice, where members wore all black, posed HandsUpDontShoot, and posted on Facebook:


The 2014-2015 year was led by BSU President Nakisha Renee Jones.

Below is a list of all the events of that year, focused on community, solidarity and activism:

·      Created the UPS Black Student Union One More Scholarship

·      One More Scholarship Fundraising Dinner—raised over $10,000 with help of BSU volunteers and community members

·      Volunteered for Race & Pedagogy National Conference

·      Outing to view Dear White People

·      Kwanzaa Celebration

·      BSU Retreat to the Northwest African American History Museum

·      First Annual Black Student Union SOLIDarity Conference at University of Washington Seattle

·      #BlackOut – Protest to Support Ferguson

·      Coordinated the Die In with staff members to protest Police Brutality and support Black Lives Matter Movement

·      SUB Poetry Protest to protest for Black Lives Matter

·      Assisted with the talk-back in the Piano Lounge after the Ferguson decision

·      Attended Black Lives Matter council meeting

·      Black Lives Matter Event with Race & Pedagogy and Race in Tacoma

·      March of Solidarity across campus

·      Black History Month

o   Afro-Caribbean Dance Night

o   Michael Powers—Jazz Guitarist

o   Black Box—weekly interaction with students on campus

o   BSU and Q&A film series

§  Selma

§  Out in the Night

o   Kevin Powell

o   Gospel Choir

·      BSU Retreat

·      Black Ice Literary Magazine

During 2015-2016 the BSU President Rachel Askew kept the fire burning.

Here is a list of events from that year:

· Hosted BBQ/Kickback on Todd Field to welcome freshmen

· Hosted talks with Keith Blocker, Hilltop Urban Gardens, and Access Programs

· Volunteered at Hilltop Urban Gardens to begin work on the BLM Memorial Garden

· One More Scholarship Fundraising Dinner—raised over $10,000 with help of BSU volunteers and community members

· Volunteered for Race & Pedagogy Summit

· Outing to view The Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution

· Co-founded Advocates for Institutional Change (AIC) coalition

· Have since formed committees through AIC and participated in meetings with administration

· Planned and executed the November Walkout alongside members of AIC

· Kwanzaa Celebration

· Gave tours to Lister Elementary 3rd graders

· Hosted the Black Box (interactive discussion platform in WSC)

· #BlackOut & SUB Poetry protest to Support Mizzou

· Hosted talk back after Straight Outta Compton viewing

· Attended Black Student Union meetings with UW-Tacoma, TCC, UW-Seattle

· Attended community Black Women Speak Rally at Tacoma Aids Foundation

· Collaborated with ASUPS and CICE for Black History Month events

· Protested the Board of Trustees meeting

· Black Ice Literary Magazine

BSU Scholarship Dinner