Black Student Union presents Defying Odds & Producing Excellence


Photo courtesy BSU's Instagram

Black Student Union comes together and presents D.O.P.E. as a celebration of Black history.

The Black Student Union put on a webinar-style show for Black History Month titled “We Are The Dream” Defying Odds & Producing Excellence (D.O.P.E) on Feb. 23.

The webinar included speeches, live performances, poems, a cultural fashion show and excerpts from famous authors.

The night started at 7 p.m. and presented a slideshow with art created by members of the Black Student Union. The webinar had cultural music playing in the background.

The overall goal of the night was to bring light to Black history rather than dwelling on the past. Presenters also celebrated Black culture. They created the evening to be moving and touching to everyone who attended.

English teacher LindseyVance is the sponsor for the organization because she wants to create a safe environment for all Black students. “I want to create a place where every student is seen, heard and valued,” Vance said.

The first performance of the night was from the show choir and they performed the newly labeled “Black National Anthem,” which is the song “Lifted Up Every Voice and Sing” by J. Rosamond Johnson and James Weldon Johnson.

During the show, seniors spoke about their experiences as a minority and their time in the Black Student Union. Senior Brooke Davis said, “There is a small percentage of Black students at Wootton…it is important all of us to know how to act and what to do. High school is a place to reach out and make new friends and Black Student Union has helped me.”

Students also shared original poems. Ewerechukwu Elubiaozor wrote “Two Voices” and junior Jordan Cole-Sanni wrote “Broken Beauty.”

Throughout the night, there were performances from the Acatonics, the Black Student Union, ensemble and the show choir. They all sang songs written by Black composers. During the ensemble performance, they showed inspirational pictures and quotes from Black history.

Senior Laurenne Yomi Mvette said, “It isn’t just a club for Black students to socialize, it teaches you valuable life lessons you need in life, to be a leader and a role model.”

Students in the club who chose to present their clothes came together to create a fashion show. During the fashion show, they strutted in traditional African clothing to traditional music.

Senior Daniel Araya said, the Black Student Union “created a feeling of pride in my heritage and sparked interest in my culture, the things learned in BSU will be with me for the rest of my life.”

They closed out the night with a poem by the BSU students while presenting inspirational pictures. They recognized a lot of famous inspirations who are Black. They then thanked everyone who came together from all different races.

Overall it was a spectacular program that was put together by the school and the wonderful performances.”

— Chidubem Aniagboso

Sophomore Chidubem Aniagboso said, “Overall it was a spectacular program that was put together by the school and the wonderful performances. Very proud of my older sister and her performance. It really displayed a wonderful BHM message.”

Principal Kimberly Boldon was emotional and proud about this evening. Boldon said, “Students are defying odds and producing excellence.”