Equipping Christian college students to engage in timely and meaningful conversations on their campuses is at the heart of Q Union. On Oct. 25, Samford is hosting and broadcasting Q Union on campus for the second year.
On Thursday night, from 6-8 p.m., the event will be hosted in Reid Chapel. National speakers, including Bob Goff, Jo Saxton and Scott Harrison will be broadcast and accompanied by Samford student speakers Lucy Kate Green, Julia Bradley and Peyton Welch. These student leaders will engage in conversations on topics including prison reform, women in ministry, racism and social justice. Junior religion and sociology major, Julia Bradley, offered a background of Q Union and what students in attendance on Thursday can expect to hear and experience.
Bradley said, in explaining the goals and purpose of Q Union.
“It’s all about asking questions-difficult questions-and engaging in conversations which we don’t naturally have,” Bradley said.
The Q Union organization strives to bring universities and communities together by providing a space in which conversations about current issues can occur in a healthy environment.
Bradley became involved with the Q Union movement last year when she attended the annual Q conference in Nashville, Tennessee. The conference focused on leadership development in ministry, social justice, and nonprofit organizations, and Bradley felt compelled to strengthen Q Union’s presence at Samford. After applying and engaging in six weeks of training, Bradley gained confidence and preparation to speak at this week’s event.
“I have a big passion for the church and a big passion for social justice…any kind of thing where those things intersect, I am usually really drawn to,” when asked about what inspired Bradley to become involved with Q Union, she said.
The national Q speakers will be broadcast live across the nation to 22 universities and various community centers. The broader Q organization encompasses the more specialized groups known as Q Union and Q Commons. While Q Union events are focused on culture and change in American universities, Q Commons brings broader communities together in conversations.
“There’s really a wide spectrum of universities that are hosting this event,” Bradley said. “The fact that Samford is really making this a priority to have these conversations on their campus is something to be really proud of.”
Students in attendance on Thursday night can expect to hear talks and participate in discussions around topics that are typically shied away from on campus and in everyday conversations. They can expect to leave the event better equipped to participate in challenging conversations in their everyday lives instead of remaining silent on important issues.
Bradley hopes that Samford students will attend and leave the event inspired to make changes for the good on this campus.
“(Students are) desired to come to the table and have this conversation. I hope that being a part of the conversations we are going to have is energizing in a way and feeds curiosity,” Bradley said. “We’re here to encourage you to keep looking and digging and exploring the sexism and racism in the culture we live in.”
Carol is a staff writer from Huntsville, Alabama. She is a junior English and Religion double major.