As FAMU enters a new phase of growth, many students are rejoicing at the return of the much-loved “Set Fridays” .
Fridays at the Set is an avenue for students to mingle and support black businesses that sell everything from incense to custom t-shirts.
Reminiscent of the trade routes that extended from Sub-Saharan West African countries to Europe, the Set links black businesses, clubs and organizations with students who support the success of commerce in Tallahassee.
Not long ago, “Set Fridays” was targeted by faculty members, who felt its loud music and often rowdy crowd was eroding the University’s ability to maintain a peaceful equilibrium between academics and extracurricular activities.
A compromise between Interim President Castell V. Bryant and the SGA resulted in the shifting of vendors to the Rattlers Den to relieve congestion on the Set while drawing traffic to businesses at the Den.
I am happy that the leadership of this university identified the importance of the Set and subsequently reached a compromise that supports both sides to some degree, because without the Set, FAMU would be less of an experience.
Being a business administration student at a HBCU has revealed to me the importance of nurturing and supporting black businesses.
The success of the black business is dependent upon the support of the people who seek its services.
Part of that support is rooted in the ability of blacks to see our businesses as a component that promotes progression and preservation of our future.
The Set has the potential to transform this University into a beacon that will shed light on the consciousness of blacks, revealing the true potential of the black dollar.
We should look to our sisters and brothers on the Set for our needs before we go to the GAP or Vinyl Fever. Our future depends on our ability to support each other.
In my four years at FAMU, I have always seen the Set as a family oriented atmosphere that encourages students to get up, get out and get involved.
Much like the open markets found in many cities around the world, the Set is something that draws all walks of life to its historic bricks.
Campus organizations see the Set as a way to recruit interested talent while vendors see it as an opportunity to sell products to college students thirsty for new and rare products.
I see the reestablishment of Set Friday as an opportunity for Rattlers to come together and continue the legacy built by FAMU.
Adeleke Omitowoju is a fourth year business student from Atlanta. She can be reached at email@example.com