On Wednesday, April 28 at noon, the St. Ambrose University Black Student Union (BSU) hosted the second annual Unity Walk on the SAU campus. The Unity Walk’s purpose is to reaffirm solidarity on campus.
The event drew in around seventy participants from the SAU community including faculty, staff and students, which was a decrease in attendance from the first Unity Walk in Spring 2019. Participants were invited to make small pods consisting of their friends to walk with. This ensured social distancing throughout the duration of the walk.
The diversity, equity and inclusion mission and core values on the SAU website states, “St. Ambrose University seeks to enable all of its students to develop intellectually, spiritually, ethically, socially, artistically, and physically to enrich their own lives and the lives of others.”
The first Unity Walk in Spring 2019 was hosted in response to several hateful, discriminating statements written around campus. BSU and the other DEI groups and organizations plan on continuing an annual walk to reaffirm solidarity.
The event also highlighted some other Diversity, Equity and Inclusion groups including ADAPT, the Saudi Student Association, International Student Organization, SAAT, Latinos Unidos and PRISM.
This year the event included speakers 2020-2021 BSU President Leonard Jones, 2021-2022 BSU President Yasmin Toto, 2021-2022 SAU Student President Laura Meloy, SAU Professor and PRISM Advisor Sarah Jane Eikleberry and Associate Vice President for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, and Director of the Accessibility Resource Center Ryan Saddler.
Posters by SAU Art Professor Joseph Lappie were also handed out to participants.