On March 31st, Indiana Gamma and the Alpha Phi Alpha chapter of IU hosted a campus-wide “Unity March” to end racism and hatred within the IU community. The march was crafted as an event solely for SAE and APhiA, but turned into much more as the community at large grew interested in the movement. The overall focus of the unity march was to promote positive relations among race and to stop the tides of racism, bigotry, and hatred across the Indiana University campus.
As the procession began to move down North Jordan, more and more members of the greek and IU community joined in. The brainchild of brother Kaleb Sullen and Alpha Phi Alpha member Cameron Harris, the movement turned into much more than a statement against racism: It was a moment of friendship and bonding between sects of the IU community. Towards the beginning of the walk, Kaleb challenged everyone to “meet five new people”. This, according to him, was geared towards making the march actually mean something to the brothers. “The walk itself has meaning, but I felt that we as a chapter could embrace change and branch out into a community we didn’t have many roots in.” As the march reached 10th and Jordan, a chant of “I-Unity” broke out among the 100-plus marchers, and on-lookers began to take notice and some even joined in the rally cry. At Showalter Fountain, the event was capped off with a speech from Neal-Marshall Director Dr. Stephanie Power-Carter. Dr. Power-Carter talked about the power of taking a stance against what’s wrong and commended those involved for taking a stand against such a large problem facing our nation.
When the march ended, those who took place in the march were invited to the Neal-Marshall Black Culture Center, where Indiana Gamma and Alpha Phi Alpha had a chance to talk and get to know one another. As the event dwindled, many stayed after to talk about the experience and joke around with their new acquaintances. Kaleb mentioned this was a big component of why the march was conducted: “We want to bring together IFC (Inter-fraternity council) and the NPHC (National Pan-Hellenic Council to organize more events with each other. If this goal doesn’t come to fruition, then I think the march wasn’t fully successful.” The Unity March promoted the end of racism, but also fostered a new friendship between Indiana Gamma and Alpha Phi Alpha that hopefully lasts for many years to come.