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In Focus: Group makes progress in face of T-shirt debate

Angela Saoud and April Thomas | Friday, January 21, 2005

Despite recent controversy with the Pride Week T-shirts, the Student Activities Board has continued to provide students with a variety of activities and lead the student body with two recent awards.

The group faced criticism in September after the board sold a shirt depicting a brown-haired Caucasian woman. Some members of the Saint Mary’s community felt the image did not represent all Saint Mary’s women. After these concerns were brought to SAB’s attention, the board held a series of identity forums and discussions about what it means to be a Saint Mary’s woman.

While listening to student feedback, SAB decided to issue a school-wide apology. However, some students felt as though SAB had tried to gloss over the controversy and held a silent protest and petition signing.

Another apology was issued to students shortly thereafter, specifically geared toward the T-shirt debacle.

But with the controversy dying down, SAB has been able to pave the way for more positive progress.

The group was named an “All-Star Delegation” this semester at the National Association for Campus Activities Mid-America Conference – an award based on attendance and participation in specific conference events.

Individually, representative Donna Lubbers received the region’s “Outstanding Undergraduate Student Award” for her leadership and involvement at Saint Mary’s.

In addition to being leaders in the campus community, SAB is also responsible for bringing quality entertainment to the college.

This semester, SAB organized Write the Troops, SMC Singled Out, comedian Kyle Cease’s visit and free movies like “50 First Dates” and “13 Going on 30,” as well as planning the annual Jamaica Shaka and Twilight Tailgate.

But the group’s goal was providing big names, such as Blessid Union of Souls at the Tailgate.

In October, SAB also arranged a small-scale concert with the well-known country group, Emerson Drive.

SAB is continually planning events aimed at improving the quality of campus life for Saint Mary’s students.