This is a blog posted by a School of Journalism and Graphic Communication student
Wednesday, Florida A&M University visited the State Capital in great numbers. This was an opportunity for FAMU advocates to show their concern and appreciation for FAMU to the legislatures.
Support came from alumni, students and the general public. There was orange and green lurking everywhere (that is FAMU’s colors).
It was inviting, in a sense, because everyone shared a common ground – a love of FAMU. Juanita Cook, a 1967 alumna, said that she hoped she would be able to show her love for FAMU, and that the university lives forever. Cook said, emotionally, “The Representatives need to know that we don’t need any more funding cuts, being that we don’t receive equal funding in the first place.”
This year the Florida State Senate Chair, JD Alexander, wants the state ‘s 11 universities to return $400 million from its reserves to help balance a $71 million budget.
FAMU is expected to get a $11 million cut. Cook said that FAMU Capitol Day is imperative to not only show are school spirit, but to let other people know that “we’re on the Hill but not quiet on the Hill.”
Masekela Mandela, a fifth year business administration student from Tallahassee and presiding Presidential Ambassador at FAMU said, “It’s interesting to see how FAMU students and alumni interact with legislative. Its good to know that we can express ourselves to the politicians the exact issues affecting our campus, and what they can do to help.” The importance of supporting FAMU Capitol day is an understatement.
Paul Ellis, a FAMU advocate, said that it’s important that we show up today because of the challenges we’re facing as a school.
Any opportunity to shed light on the positive aspects is tremendous. “The more Rattler spirit we can show,” said a 1951 alumna Queen Bruton, “the more awareness and eradicating of ignorance we can produce and diminish.” She herself said that attending FAMU Capitol Day has enlightened her by giving her an interrelationship with today’s Rattlers and Congress.
Overall, this was quite an adventure! I was amaze at how united and connected each person appeared. From the time I stepped in, people where laughing and speaking. It was a silent message among us – let’s stand with each other and not against. I didn’t know what to expect when I first went.
I am glad to report that it was more than I bargained.