SASI tackles social issues with artistic annual event

Students Against Social Injustice held their annual Express Yaself event on Sunday Feb. 25 in Sturges Auditorium. The event featured booths from different Geneseo activist groups and students who expressed current social problems through art forms like poetry. Pictured  above is a photo display of different organizations’ events and protests. (Sophie Yeomans/Asst. Copy Editor)

In today’s political climate, there are many pressing issues that still need to be addressed. Students Against Social Injustice is working to change that.

Students gathered in Sturges Auditorium on Sunday Feb. 25 for SASI’s Express Yaself. Express Yaself is an annual expo where students are given the opportunity to showcase their art.  These acts are in response to social justice causes individuals are passionate about.

The performances ran in intervals during the three-hour event. Activities included a discussion of current social injustice events such as an incident at SUNY Plattsburgh, where a student posted a picture and said she was going to lynch black people, as well as SASI’s general objectives.

The overall message of the event was that all students should feel comfortable on-campus no matter who they are. 

In the event’s first poetry reading, history adolescent education major senior Ilana Turk from the Geneseo Poet Society performed. The reading contained a warning about its heavy drug and sexual content. 

Other students in the Geneseo Poet Society, such as geography major sophomore Ryan Mathers, international relations major freshman Kazon Robinson, pre-biology major sophomore Olivia Whitmarsh and English adolescent major senior William Antonelli, performed original expressive poetry alongside Turk. 

Additionally, a cappella groups Between the Lines and Southside Boys sang to further proliferate the event’s artistic feeling of expression.

Several student organizations, including Peace Action Geneseo, Black Student Union and Student Coalition for Migrant Workers, also tabled at the event to inform students about the ways they can get involved with on-campus activism.

SASI President senior Troy Keith emphasized the importance of the Express Yaself event.

“This is an opportunity for people to be like, ‘I’m doing this project, it’d be nice to have some students’ support,’” Keith said. “Another part is community and just talking and having a good time. The school environment is very stressful and we hardly ever have time to just sit down and have fun with other people.”

SASI Vice President and Treasurer senior Kai Carlin also explained how vital it is for students to “express themselves” in any area they can.

“I would say the first step is to go to an organization that you feel comfortable with, whether that’s SASI or a multi-cultural club,” Carlin said. “Go to the people you’re close with and hopefully they can guide you to SASI or another social justice group to make sure that what you want to do can be implemented.”

Due to current events, it is more crucial than ever to become involved, and events like Express Yaself emphasize an effort to bring about a significant change.