Photo Courtesy of Biola University
At the Student Government Association on February 17, journalism major Lailah Walker and Bible, theology and ministry major Jaloni Wilson gave a presentation about two affinity groups on campus—Chocolate Chat and Iron Sharpens Iron. Walker said she joined Chocolate Chat at the end of her freshman year, became more involved in her sophomore year and made strong connections with Black women serving in leadership positions in the affinity group. Walker explained that affinity groups are safe spaces where students can process thoughts and emotions with Biolans of a similar cultural background.
Wilson, an intern at Iron Sharpens Iron—an affinity group for Black men—said ISI helped him navigate Biola and feel like he had an established place on campus. He described affinity groups as places where members can express themselves and navigate their world in the context of racial identity. Wilson explained that affinity groups give Biolans a space to share, discuss and process their experiences without feeling dominated by another voice.
Stewart senator Richard Villarreal gave a presentation about supporting FirstGen students. As a first generation Biolan, Villarreal explained that he was unaware of the resources available to him. He said coming to Biola forced him to learn an unspoken curriculum of time management and organization as he navigated college life.
Villarreal shared his desire to get the word out about FirstGen mentorship and supplemental materials. He said he hopes to participate in a future panel that highlights different perspectives and experiences of FirstGen students.
The senate passed a proposal for $1,200 to re-felt the pool table in the Student Union Building in full. SGA president Nevin Slaughter presented a proposal for $802 to tint the windows in the Student Union Building to block out distractions and make it easier for students to work. Senators passed the proposal in full in hopes of covering the cost of tinting the windows of both the SGA and Veteran Center locations in the SUB.
Hope senator Christie Macris requested $180 to add lights to the fourth floor lounge of Hope Hall. Macris explained she wanted to make the space more accessible since Hope Hall does not have a lot of outdoor seating. The senate passed the proposal in full.
SPRING FORMAL DANCE
Senators considered a formal dance that may potentially take place this spring. They floated several potential locations, including the Irvine Regional Park and the William R. Mason Regional Park, and also considered possibly holding the event on campus. Senators discussed having a food truck, desserts and refreshments for students to enjoy. They considered having a photo booth with a frame, twinkling lights and curtains. Senators expressed their desire for Biolans to attend with friends or a date should the formal take place.