First Black & Indigenous Student Success event to be held on campus

This illustration depicts a student looking out at the Oregon State University campus. The Dr. Larry Griggs Office of Black and Indigenous Student Success is hosting their first campus event Saturday for incoming Black and Indigenous students and their families to attend.

Kimberly Clairmont, News Contributor

Dr. Larry Griggs Office of Black & Indigenous Student Success is hosting an event on Oregon State University’s campus for Black and Indigenous families on Aug. 14.

The event will be on OSU’s Corvallis campus from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. According to OSU’s Director of the OBISS Dorian Smith, parking will be free as well as registration.

Smith says to incoming and returning Black and Indigenous students planning to attend with their families that the purpose of the event is to “make sure students feel welcome at OSU and that they know about and take advantage of their resources like our amazing Bridge programs.” 

“We know how important it is, especially for underrepresented students, to have a community on campus and to use the resources that are here to help them be successful,” Smith said. “We wanted to make sure that we have the opportunity to include family as well, so they can know they have a really good support system here at OSU.” 

According to Smith, this is the first time that OSU has been able to fund this type of event after getting a grant from the state of Oregon. The event will be providing families with lunches, information and a chance to win brand new OSU gear at a raffle drawing.

The day starts with welcoming and registering any students who decided to come the day of the event at the Alumni Center. Parking is free on Saturday across campus, and air conditioning will be provided in all indoor facilities. 

The students will then go on a campus tour. All the students and their families will receive a book highlighting former students of color who graduated from OSU. Smith feels that it is important for these students to see the impact that these students of color have made on campus. 

Afterwards the students will visit the Native American Longhouse and the Black Cultural Center and then eat boxed lunches at the Student Experience Center plaza where students can speak with faculty members. After lunch, everyone will head back to the Alumni Center and attend numerous presentations by multicultural Greek organizations and other historic organizations. 

A live DJ will then play music, and the event hosts will give the students time to ask questions about housing, financial aid and scholarships. During the resource fair, students will have time to mingle with other students and families. 

Smith says, “We want them to feel welcome at OSU and know that they have a really strong community here and tons of support,” Smith said. “So, if they can make it, we would love for them to be here, but if they can’t, we’d still love for them to connect with our office and think about joining our Bridge program and our new Living-Learning Communities.”

The office and the organization is getting a new office in the Memorial Union building Room 62 for students to visit next year if they cannot attend this event. 

“I think it’s going to be great,” Smith said. “It’s the first time we’re doing it. I’m hoping that this can be something that we continue to grow.”

Students interested in signing up for the event can do so at this link.