GSU: Uplift us or leave

Grambling State University is one of the best things that happened to my friends, family and me. Even so, there is always room for improvement.The Grambling community must be encouraged to critically analyze the university and its processes.

The focus must be students. This isn’t an unfamiliar campus concept.

University President, Dr. Frank G. Pogue, routinely emphasizes the importance of developing a student-centric environment.

In concurrence with the president, I remind students to find their voices and use them.

We don’t have to be abrasive; but, we are allowed to be honest.

Students should find ways to express concerns without being unnecessarily inflammatory or compromising our good name. That often means learning when to zip it.

Spreading provocative and unsubstantiated rumors (read: gossip) ultimately compromises the worth in all of our degrees.

A little more thought about what we speak into the Grambling State University experience cannot hurt.

That’s not to say that we shouldn’t rally against injustices.

That’s not to say that we must accept second-rate services and attitudinal personnel.

There seems to be a presumption among some university faculty and staff that they are doing students favors by assisting students.

They are not. They are executing what is necessary to earn their paycheck. It is their job. Anything less is robbery.

However, students must meet them halfway. Students who approach faculty and staff with entitlement mentalities and impolite practices, oftentimes won’t be given leeway when they need it.

We are called to remind the community that this prestigious university has unparalleled genius and talent.

We have questionable characters like anywhere else; but, that shouldn’t jeopardize our reverence for productive members of the university family.

Another common community misconception is that people only come to Grambling State University because they either exhausted all other avenues or weren’t accepted anywhere else.

That’s simply not true. Choosing education here isn’t a fatal flaw or an admission of guilt. It is an opportunity for expansion.

Remembering and recreating Grambling’s legacy keeps not only our university relevant, but it also helps other HBCUs uphold the high standards that we have always had and can’t afford to lose now.

This semester and in subsequent semesters we should not allow missteps of the past to be repeated.

We must love, contribute to and be appropriately critical of Grambling or leave, to create space for people who will be.

Editor in chief Imani Jackson is a senior mass communication major from Jacksonville, Fla.