How can our community come together in times of deep political division? How can we promote dialogue, respect and social justice? It is my firm belief that we do it by coming together and sharing what we are passionate about. We must collaborate to create spaces for solidarity. SCCAP, the SCU Student Art League, and the Forge garden came together to put on an amazing event, Gallery in the Garden, empowering students to showcase their art, celebrate environmental justice and perform music and slam poetry. Eating home grown salad, singing along and looking at sculpture, over 100 students were able to come together in a laid back atmosphere, mingling with students, faculty and staff from all different areas of campus.
The Empowerment Department within SCCAP is launching a new movement, Be More: the campaign to make Santa Clara University more responsible, more sustainable and more transparent. Inspired by the Ignatian philosophy of the Magis, we as a community must hold our institution accountable to its mission and Jesuit identity. We have to encourage the University to be better, to be more. Understanding that the fight for social justice is an uphill battle we know that the only way we can continue on is through community. Martin Luther King wrote, “the arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends towards justice,” movements like ours work to ensure proverbs like these come true. As an institution we must orient ourselves against the grain of the current day and towards justice. We must stand up for the rights of the marginalized. We must be leaders in environmental justice, and not fall complacent in our moral minimums. We must look closely at our university finances and ensure that fall in line with our values. As a community of people who care deeply about the world in which we live, we must challenge our institution to be more responsible, more sustainable and more transparent.
- Ciaran Freeman