A Different World was a spinoff show that ran from 1987 to 1993. The popular show depicted what life was like at a fictional Historically Black College and University. For me, it gave me something to look forward to once I grew up.

Although the show was fictional, it dealt with real-life events such as pledging, self-discovery, friendship, family, abusive relationships, drugs, and finding love, to name a few. When I first arrived at Southern, I didn’t know what to expect. “A Different World” was just a show after all, right? However, what I found here originally in 2007, was better than the show.

Being a non-traditional student, let me tell you a few things about campus life then. SGA was seen and heard. Events were plastered everywhere on campus, including in dormitories. Now, we rarely see or hear of any events. Few students scheduled classes between 11-1. Every day, but moreover on Wednesdays, everyone dressed up and was inside and outside of the Union in anticipation of a Greek show or stroll. As I walk and look around the Union this Wednesday, it surprises me that Pretty Wednesday is not every Wednesday. I am aware of the most recent pandemic, thinking that is part of the cause.

Then, there was not a bonnet in sight. Teachers were more open and understanding. Boley was my home as a female freshman dorm, and I had a roommate and 6 total suitemates. Thank goodness Boley is now a one-bedroom.

Friday and Saturday nights were for “Perfect 10” parties or going to the mall with friends. Sunday was for 2 hour-long brunches and dinners in either Dunn or Mayberry. At that time, we were able to invite off-campus friends and were allowed to use our swipes to get them in. In the midst of all of those events, we still had time for movie nights and impromptu dance parties. We did not go without our share of fights. However, back then “beef” was handled through talks and fists- not guns or two or three people jumping one person…

When are we going to regain the true essence of Southern University? It is supposed to be a “Home Away from Home.” However, between the gun violence, group fights, and disrespect from students, faculty, and staff alike. How are we ever going to get out of this “fog”?

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