College of Liberal Arts

Students changing campus culture, changing the world

Mon, Dec 19, 2016
Adit Bior is a senior majoring in philosophy and government. Photo by Jessica Sinn.
Adit Bior is a senior majoring in philosophy and government. Photo by Jessica Sinn.

Adit Bior is like a whirlwind. When she’s not in class, she’s planning social media campaigns, meeting with college deans or building up a campus-wide Black Lives Matter Initiative. During her “downtime” she’s cheering the Longhorns at sporting events with her fellow Texas Sweethearts.

Although her jam-packed days can be exhausting, the work is well worth the effort, she says, because it all leads to one important goal: making the world a better place. Not just for herself, but for her mother who sacrificed so much to bring her family to safety.

“My parents were both refugees,” says Bior, a philosophy and government senior. “We came here from South Sudan when I was two months old. My mom has gone through unimaginable hardship, yet she has had such a positive outlook on life.

When she assumed her new role as administrative director in Student Government last May, she focused her efforts on making the university a more welcoming, inclusive
place for all students. This involves a lot of boots-on-the-ground meetings with deans, student groups and various units and offices across campus. She also meets with students on the Campus Climate Advisory Board to share updates on campus-wide diversity and inclusion measures, and to explore areas that could use improvement.

“The best way to make things happen is to meet with people and learn about how they’re diversifying the campus, then see how we can help,” she says. “This is a great learning opportunity because a lot of students don’t know the amount of work that’s being done in departments across the campus.”

One area that could use some work, she notes, is diverse student recruitment. Though several programs within the DDCE, such as UT Outreach, are making advancements in campus diversity, she says the university could bring in more students of color by providing better scholarships.

“Black students tend to get a lot of offers from HBCUs with generous scholarships,”she says. “UT needs to work on providing minority students with more resources and also help them while they’re in high school.”

Her best piece of advice for future Longhorns: Get in involved in campus life and make the university your own.

“My two big pieces of advice: Don’t be afraid to ask for help,” Bior adds. “The sooner you ask, the sooner you’ll fix the problem. And don’t be afraid to fail. What separates Longhorns from the rest is that we know how to fail well. We know how to get back up and persevere.”

 

A version of this story, authored by Jessica Sinn, first appeared on the University's Division of Diversity and Community Engagement website. To read more about other students who are changing campus culture and the world, click here.

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