Trenton Joiner finds home away from home in BSU

Trenton Joiner is the student-elected Vice President of the Black Student Union, among many other roles

Erin Davis, Practicum Contributor

Fall of 2015, coming to Oregon for the first time ever, freshman Trenton Joiner had plans to live a very simple day-to-day life.

“Go to class, go to my room, go to the gym, go to my room,” said Joiner. “Rinse, repeat, everyday.”

But right when he arrived at Oregon State University, he did the complete opposite. Joiner met friend Justeen Quartey, President of the Black Student Union (BSU), who informed him of the opportunities at the Lonnie B. Harris Black Cultural Center, as well as BSU.

Joiner spent a lot of his time during his freshman year hanging around the LHBCC, doing homework and hanging out with friends. By the end of the year, he had built connections with the staff and decided he wanted to apply to work there beginning his sophomore year. Joiner applied, and got the job as a peer facilitator at the LHBCC.

“I value it a lot,” Joiner said. “It allows me to be in this space among people that I know, people that I trust, people that I enjoy being around. While also giving me a place to feel comfortable, a place that I can come and I know that I will be safe.”

As a peer facilitator at the LHBCC, Joiner works as the connection between the center and the student body. He is in charge of giving tours of the facility, planning events and doing a lot of behind the scenes work. On top of this, Joiner is also now the student-elected Vice President of BSU. He is a part of the University Honors College and is soon to be an IM basketball referee. Taking on all of these roles, Joiner is also a double major in kinesiology and bioengineering.

“As a double major I admire his ambition. He is a great student and works very hard. If he has questions, he is not afraid to ask them,” Quartey said.

Joiner’s friends explain the importance he places on his studies and the constant effort he puts in to learn.

“I admire Trenton (because) he is very smart, courteous, generous. I really admire how passionate he is, about not only his studies but his friends,” said Dominique Holman, the Secretary of the BSU.