I have always felt immense pride in Spring Hill College, but not because we have the best facilities or the best instructors. My pride in our institution comes from our intense feeling of responsibility to promote justice and the welfare of others. It has always been evident to me that I did not apply to just any college because Spring Hill is unique.
When I chose Spring Hill, I chose the school for the view, the curriculum and the traditions, but as I explored the history, I found that SHC was great for much more important reasons.
Badgers flocked to the Martin Luther King Jr. march on Jan. 15 to show their support as they walked hand in hand with fellow citizens. Student groups also attended the march, including Upper Room A Cappella and several Greek fraternities and sororities.
In addition to the students who came out to participate in the march, many of Spring Hill’s faculty and staff showed their support as well, including Fr. Mark Mossa, S.J., and college president Christopher Puto. Several representatives from Residence Life and Campus Ministry were also in attendance. “I think this is a great turnout,” said President Puto, “I’m impressed and proud. People care, and it shows.”
Badgers are no strangers to injustice. In 1957, SHC students famously chased members of the Ku Klux Klan off campus before they could initiate a cross burning outside one of the residence halls, which became a historic landmark in the city of Mobile.
Only three years prior, SHC was the first college in the South to voluntarily integrate. This action towards justice prompted Martin Luther King Jr. to commend our school’s leaders for their actions against injustice in his famous Letter From a Birmingham Jail.
I am not Catholic, but our Jesuit identity goes beyond denomination, religious and non-religious belief. The ideals of justice and service are represented in various ways on our campus. Whether Badgers are collecting canned goods for natural disaster victims or speaking out against injustice, I know that I will always say that I am proud to be a Badger.
Social justice is who we are. Social justice and being in solidarity with others are what we do.