On Feb. 16, students, faculty and alumni gathered to discuss the relationship between diversity and campus relations in “Diversity in Action: A Discussion of Student Activism at Niagara University.”
“When I arrived here (Niagara) in 1969, I saw that there was work that needed to be done,” said Bill Bradberry, ’70, founder of the university’s original Black Student Union. “Looking around the audience now and seeing the students around me, I see the fulfillment of a dream.”
Among the topics discussed in the event were social changes, the issues students are working through today and some of the challenges going forward with diversity. Bradberry, who was a significant contributor on the panel, said that in living in Niagara Falls, he sees the local community as acting like a spark plug to the rest of the world.
“I am very hopeful that Niagara Falls, and specifically Niagara University, can help lead the rest of the world to the right way, because we have in a way figured it out,” said Bradberry. “The challenge for you as students is to get along with each other. When students have come together to work together and fight for something, it has made a tremendous change in the university; it is huge.”
The panelists included Bradberry and student representatives from the Black Student Union, Feminism Today, NU Alliance, Muslim Student Alliance and Saudi Student Association. In his closing remarks, Bradberry had some insight to the students both on the panel and in attendance.
“When someone asks you when you come out of college what you are doing, don’t tell them what you want to be,” said Bradberry. “Rather, tell them what you want to do and accomplish in your life. Do not worry about the minds you cannot change, but instead focus on those that you can change and help to show and influence those minds. Now I challenge you to go out into the real world, take your views and thoughts of the world and work together, and show the value of that.”
Article by Greg Jubert, a Niagara University sophomore studying sport management and communication studies. He is also a member of the Public Relations Student Society of Niagara. Photo by Gabrielle McIntyre, a junior communication studies major at NU.