Finding Black communities in Tuscaloosa

Madison Duboise, Contributing Writer

More than a century after the University’s founding, the campus was integrated. Even after integrating, Black students had to find community and resources on campus. Now, there are at least 16 organizations that specifically serve Black students at the University.

ON CAMPUS

Black Student Union

The University’s Black Student Union was established in 1968 to help fulfill the needs of Black students across campus. Its mission is to establish and build better relationships and experiences for minority students on campus. The BSU serves as a liaison between minority students and school leaders in order to ensure equality and uphold the values of the Capstone Creed. 

Recently, the Black Student Union has been hosting events such as the Bra For a Cause Donation Drive and the For the Girls Breast Cancer Awareness Forum in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness month. 

Capstone Association of Black Journalists 

The Capstone Association of Black Journalists is a collegiate chapter of the National Association of Black Journalists. It was started to assist Black students as they navigate the field of journalism, especially after graduation. This organization is open to all students, not just minorities, and anyone who cares about preserving diversity in journalism is welcome to join.

Future Black Law Student Association 

The Future Black Law Student Association was created to support aspiring Black law students. It shares resources for students to maximize their pursuits in the legal profession. Mentorship and support are priorities for the organization.

The Future Black Law Student Association had an event this past month, “What Do Lawyers Do?,” where pre-law students were able to get in-depth information on the different paths of the legal profession.

The National Council of Negro Women 

The National Council of Negro Women has over 300 community- and campus-based sections that advance opportunities for African American women and the communities they live in. The council accomplishes this through research, advocacy, community work and programs in the U.S. and Africa. 

The National Council of Negro Women recently introduced their new executive board through Instagram this past week. They also hosted an event called “Girl Talk” earlier in September, creating a safe space for women.

The NAACP

The NAACP’s mission is to ensure equal rights for all, without discrimination based on race. The University’s chapter aims to improve the quality of life for all people of color on campus by ensuring inclusion and equality. 

Students Against Medical Racism 

Students Against Medical Racism educates students going into health care professions about disparities that minorities face in the medical field. Students work together to educate their peers about the causes and effects of medical discrimination. They work in the community and raise money to educate young students and others about systemic racial discrimination in the health care system. 

Project Empowerment 

Project Empowerment focuses on educating Black women on politics, but it aims to give all women of color a political voice. The project hopes to encourage high school and college students to become educated and promote political awareness.

Women of Excellence

Women of Excellence is an organization of progressive African American women who hope to foster a sense of excellence through education, politics, volunteer work and civic engagement in the community. This organization is dedicated to supporting young women as they pursue brighter futures through excellence.

Women of Excellence has been active this past month hosting the SHEIN Campus Activation Event, the Relationship Forum with The Collegiate 100 and the Consent First Forum with the KA Chapter of Alpha Phi Alpha. On Oct. 21 they are hosting a forum discussing the importance of breast cancer awareness called, The Best Protection is Early Detection.

Dynamically Reversing Everything Around Me 

D.R.E.A.M. is an organization pushing for progress in education amid a climate of racial injustice and a lack of education on the history of minorities. The organization focuses on leadership training for middle school- to college-aged students, empowering others to serve their communities and bring attention to these issues.

OFF CAMPUS 

Tuscaloosa Area Black Chamber of Commerce 

The Tuscaloosa Area Black Chamber of Commerce was created to assist in the development of African American communities and Black-owned businesses. The chamber hopes to ensure economic growth and the progression of African American contributions and advancements to society, particularly in Tuscaloosa. 

Birmingham Urban League

Birmingham Urban League is an organization that assists all racial and ethnic groups, particularly African Americans, in pursuing and achieving social and economic equality. Through education, housing, jobs and health, they hope to empower communities and their members to change lives.

Birmingham Urban League recently announced that they distributed 5.6 million dollars assisting 1,000 families in just 90 days

Black Voters Matter 

Black Voters Matter is an organization committed to educating Black Americans on voting. They advocate for policies promoting voting equality and voting rights for all, as well as for policies that intersect with race, gender, economics and other aspects of promoting equality.

From Oct. 20 to Oct. 23, Black Voters Matter plans to join together to travel from West Virginia to Washington DC to demand the Senate to act on the Freedom To Vote Act.

The Knights & Orchids Society

The Knights & Orchids Society is an organization fighting for the rights of LGBTQ African Americans throughout Alabama and the South. The society pushes for equality and justice through community work. 

The Black Youth Project

The Black Youth Project is a platform that highlights the accomplishments of Black millennials. This organization focuses on giving a voice to young Black Americans and shedding light on diversity across the country. 

The Black Youth Project recently wrote an article about the role that allies should play to the Black community

Black Women’s Blueprint

Black Women’s Blueprint is an organization dedicated to creating a safe community for Black women affected by sexual assault, abuse and incarceration. Through trauma healing, truth and reconciliation, reproductive medicine, and international programs, they hope to create a space where these women can grow.

More information about all of these organizations can be found at the linked websites. 

This story was published in the Legacy Edition. View the complete issue here.

Questions? Email the Culture desk at culture@cw.ua.edu.