Words From Our President

May your tomorrows be brighter than your todays.

More times than not, the only thing stopping you from becoming great, is yourself. As the year comes to an end, begin to focus in on why you’re here. We have experienced a lot this semester, from Roll Bounce to May Day. Now, put the drinks down and log out of Instagram – Finals Week is upon us. Success is right around the corner, and you have the green light.

I am more than honored to be called the President of the Black Student Union of the 2013-2014 academic year. This organization is for the people, something we can’t and will never forget. Alongside my executive board, we vow to bring you, the people, what can better you for the future; learning from the past to incorporate into the present. If there is anything you’d like to see us do for the upcoming year, or possible ways for improving our organization, please feel free to contact any E-Board member from now until the beginning of the year. Good luck on all of your tests, and I expect to see you all next year for those breezy September days.

And for those graduating seniors? Congratulations. You Did It. A couple days away from completing a goal you started years ago. Whether you were an active constituent or not, I appreciate what you have done to shape this organization into what it has become. Now is your time to go out and chase the dreams you wrote in your notepad during a Gen Ed. lecture sophomore year. I wish you all the best of luck, and hope you don’t forget to visit!

 Justin Brantley

Executive Board President of the Black Student Union for 2013-2014

My Voice is Yours



Photo Taken By: Moraima Capellan Pichardo

Sing Kiana! Dance Kiana! Step Kiana! Play Kiana!

Write Kiana…

Write because when the music stops, the only beat worth listening to is that of the keys dipping beneath your finger tips as you pour all that your are into black and white that reflect your thought.

Write Kiana…

Write because when speech isn’t enough, you allow the pen or pencil to dance to the lyrical tempo known as your most deepest fears, your hearts greatest desires and knowledge you’re just itching to tell.

It’s because of my voice that I write. I write because if I don’t, I don’t know when I will have another chance to do so. My voice is powerful and my voice is unique. My voice is filled with passion, drive, ambition, faith and a hint of sass. My voice allows me to be the person I am today. I am who I am because I have voice that announces that.

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What is My Voice?



Photo Taken By: Moraima Capellan Pichardo

While looking back on the articles I’ve written for this magazine, I would have to say that my voice is that of facts, reason, and logic. I use my voice to bring awareness to various issues that arise in our world that people may not know about. My thirst for knowledge helps drive my voice in relaying accurate facts. I have faith in my generation that it will be the effective leaders of tomorrow, but in order to do so, they need to be armed with accurate knowledge and I like to think the my voice helps serve that purpose.

My voice is the vehicle of progression and passion. The main goal of raising my voice is so that others may have the same passion for the truth. I want our readers to feel something when they read our magazine, whether it is anger, happiness, frustration, or sadness. These passionate emotions that come from our readers is the reason why I write and the reason that I attempt to keep my voice as pure and truthful as possible. I leave no room for fallacy and lies for I believe our readers deserve better. They deserve the bare truth, and with my voice, I am more than willing to do my best and give it to them.

Written by: Adriana Batista

The Voice of Reason



Photo Taken By: Moraima Capellan Pichardo

To define my voice in words would be impossible, but it’s always worth a try. As I pour words onto a page, I allow my readers to define me. Whether you are intrigued or bored with my writing, I still appreciate the fact that I have evoked some sort of emotion from you. Or maybe I am the voice of reason. I never want to choose a side but as a human I am forced to. However, I can consider myself the voice of reason because although I may choose a side on a particular topic or issue I always understand the opposing argument. It is difficult to take a stance in the middle because as I try to present reasoning from all aspects with my writing somehow me, as the messenger, always gets killed. As an African-American, it is often difficult to face the realities of the world. But with a pen and paper in front of me, or as my fingers click on a keyboard, I feel like I can face anything. There is no face to my writing, which leaves no room for me to feel offended or hurt by your judgments. That’s where the power has developed behind my voice.

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My Voice Needs to Be Heard


Photo Taken By: Moraima Capellan Pichardo

My voice is LOUD! ‘Cause you know I’m Puerto Rican.  Us Spanish people have a tendency to get loud, especially when we’re all together.  But I think it’s good that I’m loud because that means I am being heard. Unfortunately that does that mean I am necessarily being listened to. Living and growing up in the city and dealing with different people has taught me to speak up for what I believe in.  I’m not going to lie, when I was younger, I was a little mouse because I was intimidated by people who were boisterous.  I had to find an outlet that could help me speak up.  So I started writing at the age of ten.  I wrote stories, that were based on real life events and I would put myself in the position of the character.  I thought I was an author back then.  I would always read, to learn more about how to write, how to put the quotations when a character is speaking, or how to be descriptive.  It has helped me a lot.  I even attempted to write a book after my teacher gave me 100% as my grade for a short story project.  I never finished the book though.  While going through my first love experience, I started writing poetry mainly about love, and heartbreak.  It was the basic, cat in the hat type poetry.  My poetry has gotten waaaay better since then, thankfully.  I then realized I LOVE to write. I began to feel as if I can tell my story better through a pen and paper rather than by speaking.

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My Voice is Change



Photo Taken By: Moraima Capellan Pichardo

My voice is the representation of change. The change that started from the shackles of discrimination through slavery, to the accomplished vision Martin Luther King Jr. left reflected on his “I Have A Dream Speech.” In this speech the significant figure, Dr. King draws us an image of the progress that stands before us today. We have risen from the dark and now light is shed upon us, African Americans. My choice of words that are jotted down inflicts on our right to freedom of speech. Each letter, each word, and each paragraph that I write reminds us that we no longer have to sit in the back on the bus, our homeland, Africa, is no longer severally invaded by the corrupted world of racism and we are no longer forced to be kept under bondage. The knowledge that is engraved in my articles informs my audience about our black community, which includes our improvement and our faults as a race. The voices of many civil rights activists were left in silence, but the voices of their future generation have finally been heard. My voice is change!

 Written by: Chantelle Paguandas 

The Voice of Anti-Violence


My voice is loud. My voice is strong. My voice makes me the Jasmine I am today. My voice has been through a lot, trials and tribulations, to being recognized for my accomplishments. My voice stands against domestic violence and sexual assault. My power of speech acknowledges the problems that other countries face because of lack of medicine and proper care. The death rates in other countries are ridiculously high and more needs to be done to fix them. My power of speech knows that without consent intercourse should not take place. My knowledge knows that even though consent is not always given intercourse does still take place. And my knowledge knows that people are affected by this every two minutes in the United States. Read the rest of this entry

The Minority?

Those who consider themselves to be minorities in the United States are usually those of Hispanic, Black or Asian ethnicities. The word minority usually refers to the smaller number or the number that is less than half of the whole. Yet, if you take a close look at the world around you, the people who are usually identified with the word minority are continuously growing in size.

According to the projections for the United States Census Bureau, minorities, now 37% of U.S. population is projected to make up 57% of the population in 2060. Therefore the total minority population would more than double, from 116.2 million to 241.3 million over the next 50 years. In 2043, for the first time in American history, no one ethnic group will make up what we consider “the majority.” Read the rest of this entry

Let This Voice Be Ours


The voice…

When paper meets pen and drags along the lines creating loops and lines unfurled into letters transformed into words. When nails click clack away on keyboards typing away thoughts and screams or even the hushed secrets in between. This voice raised in the silence of minds too creative to sometimes think itself worthy or bright, a voice unmatched by microphones and speakers. Brave enough to seek truth through the lies and seek knowledge in the dark and even the light.

The voice. My voice… Our voice. Read the rest of this entry

Finding My Voice



Photo Taken By: Moraima Capellan Pichardo

As a 19-year-old second semester freshman with a major in Political Science, I find myself being constantly inspired by the experiences I go through on a day to day basis. I remember writing my first article for The Voice. My article was entitled, “Natural Hair Movement.” In that article I documented the new movement that has started with natural hair and the science of Black natural hair care. That story, alongside many others gave me the opportunity to voice my opinions, my thoughts, and allowed me to share a little bit of who I am, being that I myself am a natural hair girl.

I love to read, play the piano, sing, dance, and act. But most of all, I love to write. Writing I would have to say, is my number one passion. I express myself through my writing, and my creativity spills out the most through my pen and paper. When I find that I cannot literally voice my opinion, I will most likely write it. I also find joy in writing about experiences I have seen many people go through. From relationships, to successes and failures, life is like a movie to me. I feel as if everything is staged and I am a character, reading off of her script. And the people who I come in contact with from a day-to-day basis are co-stars. Now that may sound like a funny way to view life, but that’s how life appears to me.

With me studying Political Science, I would like to take it a step further and someday go to law school, in the end becoming a lawyer. I am a person who fights for justice and is constantly seeing the deprivation of justice in this world. I tattooed “Justice for Africa” on my forearm a couple of months ago because I wanted to show my strong belief in justice and bringing justice to those who need it most in my opinion.

The Voice has given me a voice and to those who have chosen to listen to it, thank you.

Written by: Araba Aidoo-Apau