Leilani Lattimore and Ronald Poole, Co-Presidents of Black Student Union (BSU)

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Leilani Lattimore (11th grade) and Ronald Poole (10th grade)

Black Student Union is an organization at Westside that was re-created by 11th grader Leilani Lattimore and 10th grader Ronald Poole. BSU symbolizes unity within all students, no matter what their race, at Westside. It was created to educate and inspire Westside students about the culture, history, and issues in the Black community and members strive to enhance the community with volunteering and academic tips. Leilani Lattimore stated that “BSU is about a sense of responsibility and community outreach; it means to unify Black students – however it spans to all students regardless of race – due to the nuances in history that connects us all.”

Both being Co-Presidents of BSU, Leilani and Ronald split their workload. They run meetings, come up with agendas, plan volunteer outings, search for academic tips, make posters, and oversee discussions. Typical meetings run with 2 slides on tips and individual or group volunteer activities, after which they proceed to the daily open discussions.

Ronald brought the idea to re-create BSU to Leilani and they immediately decided to make it official and asked Mr. Lee to be their sponsor. As a growing organization within Westside, BSU wants to expand their resources for students, such as by planning volunteer projects, provide information on testing programs, and bring more black history programs into the spotlight. “BSU is a movement, a way of life. In order for Black people to make a real, tangible change on a national and global platform, we first have to start locally,” said Ronald. The club intends to make a long-lasting impact on the student body with hopes of another student to uphold the position as future President of Black Student Union.