By Sophie Foster
The Washington College campus is gearing up to welcome another club to its midst. Harlem’s Finest, created with the ambition in mind of developing a space for Black men, indigenous men, and men of color, is beginning to open up to members for the first time, gauge interest, and establish a presence on campus.
According to an email sent on Oct. 4 by senior Jonah Nicholson, “Harlem’s Finest is an incoming group on campus for BIPOC men to come together as one community…we will discuss and put action toward how we as a community can show up and support the various groups that make up WC.”
Looking ahead, Nicholson indicates a broad range of plans and a plethora of activities slated for the club as it gains momentum. These ideas include flag football, a March Madness-style basketball tournament, and a spring trip. Beyond fun, camaraderie-building events, though, the club will also “hold spaces and forums to talk about mental health and its stigmas, our experiences on campus,” and other critical dialogues, according to Nicholson.
The creation of Harlem’s Finest was an endeavor partially inspired by the now-disbanded W.E.B. DuBois Society that once existed on campus, according to Nicholson.
The W.E.B. DuBois Society, which was similar in aim and nature to Harlem’s Finest, has not been active on campus since the early 2000s. During their time at WC, they worked to amplify dialogue surrounding the experiences of men of color by crafting a safe space for them and sponsoring events such as author talks and conversations about being Black at predominantly white institutions, according to WC News coverage.
Nicholson hopes to reignite that spark with the introduction of Harlem’s Finest. An interest meeting was held on Tuesday, Oct. 11 for all who were interested in joining the club or in learning more about its focus and ideals. At the interest meeting, attendees heard about what the club is going to be, what it plans to achieve, and who it endeavors to welcome.
“As this club moves throughout the year, we will shape its foundations and build on top of them as time moves forward,” Nicholson said.
Those interested in becoming involved with Harlem’s Finest or learning more about their plans for both the academic year and the semesters to come can contact Nicholson with questions, expression of interest, and other comments at email@example.com.