Black Student Union Sharing Messages of Joy at Waukee Northwest High School

New School, New Opportunities

As the walls were being built at Northwest High School, ideas were being formed for all of the amazing things that were about to happen. Black Student Union was one of the first groups to hold meetings in our district’s newest high school. From day one, they’ve made significant progress. 

“Black Student Union is a safe haven for anybody in Waukee who wants to indulge in racial topics,” shares Northwest Senior Mary Oriho.  It’s an open space for anyone to have any opinion at all.

“Everyone is welcome at BSU. Even though it’s called Black Student Union, anyone is welcome,” adds Northwest Sophomore Olivia Oriho. “No matter your race, gender, sexuality, you will come and we will be accepting of you.” 

Exciting Opportunities for Students

Benedicta Droh is a foreign exchange student at Northwest, traveling to Waukee from Ghana. Her experience in BSU is inspiring.

“Even though they are in a community where they are different from other people, their skin color, their hair, you have a platform to do great things,” says Droh. 

Sharing Stories During Black History Month

During Black History Month, this group is creating lessons for Northwest’s advisory time, with their main focus being Black joy.

“That’s what gives us the courage to keep moving on,” says Droh. “If others can do it, you can also do it and become a legend.” 

The group’s focus has been starting a tradition, creating a platform and finding joy in a sometimes difficult conversation. 

“It’s provided a lot of opportunities for me, someone who doesn’t know the system in America,” says Droh. “It’s been there to guide my steps, it’s made me known.”

Leaving a Legacy

The founding members of BSU at Northwest are hoping their groundwork this year is only the start of a powerful experience for decades to come. 

“I hope the love and the faith we build now grows and grows,” adds Oriho. “Right now I’m hoping we are as small as we’ll ever be.”