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Student Org Spotlight: BACO

Kayla Morton ’16, shares about BACO (Black Awareness Cultural Organization), one of the most active and multicultural student orgs at Cornell. BACO’s commitment to education, community, and celebration of diversity serves the entire Cornell campus in bringing awareness and understanding to black issues and developing a campus with cultural competency.

About BACO
Mission statement :

We, the Black Awareness Cultural Organization (BACO), find it necessary and desirable to form a union of concerned students. This union will confront problems and concerns of Black students, as well as help to provide avenues for change.
There are three purposes of BACO. The first and foremost is empowerment through community and support. The second is awareness of African and Black-American issues. Awareness will be achieved through programs and projects initiated by BACO for the Cornell campus and community. The third objective of BACO is to educate individuals of African and Black-American history and culture via multiple resources including but not limited to: discussions, guest speakers, films and movies, publications, and social events.
Through these objectives, we will heighten awareness of diversity through historical, social, cultural, and academic settings.

Meeting times :
1st and 3rd Thursdays at 11:30am in MLK or Stockholm meeting rooms in the Thomas Commons.
What meetings are like :
We start out our meetings with an icebreaker so everyone can introduce themselves . Then we discuss a topic and / or event that is going on the the black community. We leave time for reflection on the issue and our members are able to vent their frustrations and or opinions . It allows for a safe space in which they can freely express themselves .
Events we provide :
Privilege Week, Black Student Union Conference , Thanksgiving Dinner , Black History Month events such as soul food dinner, Cornell Black Alumnae Symposium, and History of BACO , Dr. Know It All , talk backs and discussions of black issues , ‘Scandal’ Nights, hosting  a Super Bowl Sunday party, hosting Monday night football, film screenings, game nights , and much more !
Services we provide:
  • Safe place for black students (Armstrong house )
  • Advocating for black students
  • Bringing awareness of black issues
  • Support services for black students
Why our club matters:
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It heightens the awareness of black issues to the campus and community. By doing this , black students are able to express their concerns , speak for themselves and achieve self determination . This group matters because we support and advocate for black students on campus and provide them a safe space and support group that will assist them in whatever needs they may have . Moreover, BACO brings education about black issues to the entire campus in order to create an environment for tolerance , diversity , and cultural competency .
Why students should join:
Students should join if they have interest being in a union of students concerned about black issues . Also students should join if they want to educate themselves on the issues that the black community faces .
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BACO is an essential group to Cornell’s student community and is a great org to get involved with; the group strives to address serious issues, but also has a lot of fun! Connect them with them this fall at the Student Involvement Fair, a campus-wide event, or now on the org’s Facebook page! Armstrong House, an alternative on campus housing option for upperclass students and BACO is a great resource on campus; be sure to head to an event there and get to know the house! Armstrong is a fantastic resource for black students and a hub for BACO events. 
Armstrong house