Done with the past, One Mizzou looks to the future

Four Front chairman Sean Nahlik said One Mizzou will be fine-tuned this semester.

Last year, after racially charged graffiti appeared outside of Hatch Hall, some of MU’s student organizations decided they needed to act.

Missouri Students Association President Eric Woods met with other student leaders from groups such as the Legion of Black Collegians, Four Front, the Residence Halls Association and the Graduate Professionals Council to form One Mizzou.

One Mizzou began with a large launch event and had consistent weekly meetings, but Woods said that membership reduced after the initial diversity campaign began, but the campaign has not disappeared.

“One Mizzou still exists, and I would hesitate to call it an organization because we are still in the process of putting together something, structurally and conceptually, that we feel will last,” Woods said. “We want to make this a movement that continues to be present on campus, make an impact, make a statement about campus culture. We are still trying to figure out the best way to do that.”

Woods said that One Mizzou membership has been reduced. The diversity campaign now consists of Woods, former RHA president Lauren Thomas, current RHA president Chris Rucker, LBC president Whitney Williams, LBC vice president Kristen Andrews, GPC president Kristofferson Culmer and Four Front chairman Sean Nahlik.

Although not representing the entirety of the group, these members make up the main part of its body, with LBC and Four Front acting as umbrella groups representing small organizations.

“(One Mizzou) is not a huge public thing, because we decided that last semester was great for drawing attention to it, for making it known that we’re working on things,” Woods said. “This semester is when we have to withdraw and figure out how to make it stick. We still meet every week, in smaller groups.”

Despite the smaller group size, One Mizzou still has large plans for the future.

“Big plans for this year are to hash out what we want One Mizzou to be and what we want it to be in the future," Williams said. “We’re trying to build a foundation so it’ll be around for 10, 15 years and is more than a T-shirt or brand and a logo. So, now we’re building foundations and next semester we may do an event, but we just want to do the events that are already happening on campus that are already culturally diverse that would be good for students to go to that they might not be aware of.”

Nahlik said that the foundation of One Mizzou has been reevaluated to create a new mission, long-term and short-term goals as well as an overall vision for the diversity campaign.

“By solidifying what One Mizzou means, we are preparing to go forward and take One Mizzou back to the student body with a unified message through presentations and a soon-to-be-updated website,” Nahlik said.

Woods said that he wants the future plans for One Mizzou to be solidified by the end of the fall semester.

“I’ll be graduating in December and I chaired all those early meetings and pulled everyone together,” Woods said. “A lot of other people working on it now are leaving and have been there since the beginning and want to leave something to pass on.”

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