Concerned by the distanced relationships
that exist between many student organizations on campus, Temple Student Government President Raysean Hogan and Vice President of Student Affairs Juan Galeano said they want to build stronger bonds between students.
“The number one thing is that we understand
Temple is a very diverse campus, but people say that we’re also a segregated campus,” Hogan said. This semester TSG aims to address what it perceives as a divided atmosphere on campus by encouraging student organizations to work together.
“It’s about common issues,” Galeano said. “It’s not about what race you are, it’s about common interests and bringing people together. That’s what our main goal is.”
According to Hogan, TSG makes it a point to stay involved with as many different student organizations as possible in order to maintain a close relationship with the entire student community. But he said he would like to see the student body “step outside the box and actually get to know other people.”
Hogan said this process has been happening slowly during his term as president, but it is a process he said TSG cannot do alone.
“The number one killer of progress is apathy,” Hogan said. “Unless students start caring about school, about their culture, about their community, it’s going to be hard for us to do anything.”
Hogan said that he realizes that it is natural for people of the same ethnic group to feel comfortable among each other, but he does not want that divide to prevent students from working together.
“One of the main reasons we come to a university is so we can be here and get experience and education inside the classroom. The other part of that is that you have to get to know your world and you have to get to know other people,” Hogan said. Currently, TSG’s Diversity Affairs Committee is in the process of structuring a multicultural student union. Hogan
appointed TSG Executive Board Members Brian Washington and Vipin Davis to chair the union. The union is the first step TSG has taken to encourage cultural appreciation among student organizations this semester.
“What we are encouraging is that cultures support each other,” Hogan said of the union. “We want people to care.” According to Hogan, the union is still in the developmental stages and is devising a list of programs and activities for this semester. The union has also tentatively discussed forming a black student union as a way to bridge the gap between various student organizations with memberships
of African descent.
Both Hogan and Galeano agreed that TSG wants to remain dedicated to its agenda of connecting students through their diversity, thus turning apathy into appreciation.
“We value diversity,” Galeano said. “It’s one of the main things that people love so much about Temple, so we have to harness that and make sure students have the opportunity to enjoy the fruits of that labor.”
T.C. Mazar can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.