Blacks Discuss Unification

About 50 Students Meet Saturday in Sever Hall

Students representing a wide spectrum of Black campus groups met Saturday to discuss ways of unifying the Black community at Harvard.

Some students who attended the meeting said they hoped to address what they see as the fragmented nature of the Black community at Harvard.

"There are Black students who feel we suffer from a lack of unity," said Kirk A. Parks '92, director of the African American Cultural Center. "But there is no crisis at hand. It's just a matter of improvement."

Nelson Boyce '92, a member of the Black Students Association (BSA), said that more than 50 students attended the gathering, which he called "a meeting of minds to increase Black unity on campus."

Shannon Frison '92, president-elect of the Kuumba Singers, said that two preliminary unification proposals were discussed at the meeting, but that the students did not reach a consensus on the plans. "I am in favor of unification," Frison said, "but not necessarily either of these proposals."

"Most people seem to be in favor of some kind of action, but the proposals are constantly being changed and revised," she said.

According to BSA President Art A. Hall '93, Saturday's discussion was part of an ongoing process that will continue next fall. The idea was first discussed by the BSA earlier this month, but is an initiative that includes many different students, he said.

Hall said he hopes that once unification is achieved, Black student organizations at Harvard will be more efficiently organized and financially stable and "basically that Black students will become more empowered."

Hall declined to say exactly what the proposals discussed at the meeting were.

Parks said he was optimistic about the outcome of the meeting.

"The meeting shows that the Black community is determined to make Black student life more vibrant and open," he said. "We are much more determined to be culturally alive."