SOJU Makes Its Return To Hampton

Vashti Dorman | Staff Writer

(Picture Credit: QTXI and ONYX XII Class Councils)

In an effort to keep Hampton University’s sacred traditions alive, the sophomore and junior class councils created a week of interactive events known as “SOJU Night Live” to replace the annual and highly anticipated sophomore and junior class ball. Hosted by the Quintessence XI (QTX) and Onyx XII classes, the week of events ran from April 5-9. 

“Black Jeopardy” was the first event held on Monday. Following the usual Jeopardy model of answering questions in different categories, participants were tested on their knowledge of African American culture. The event was a competition between the QTX and Onyx XII classes.  

“I wish we were having the ball, but at least we’re having something,” said Cheri Manning, a third-year psychology major from Rochester, New York. 

On Tuesday, April 6, a speed dating event took place called “Late Night Date Night.” This event was for students looking to create new relationships or friendships. This event mimicked the speed dating layout by having students talk to other students within a certain time limit. 

On day three of “SOJU Night Live” week, the QTX and Onyx class held a fundraising competition for the Peninsula Food Bank. Titled “Battle of the Band$: Onyx vs. Quintessence,” the competition was held through Instagram and utilized Bingo as a way to raise funds. All of the proceeds were donated to the Peninsula Food Bank. 

The next night consisted of a “Black Men Don’t Cheat Panel,” in which many Hampton students participated in a discussion on how faithful Black men are in relationships. Myana Mabry and Lanece Carpenter interviewed six Hampton men about relationships and what it means to be faithful. This event was held on Instagram Live and many interested Hamptonians tuned in to see who would be admitted to the “Faithful Black Men’s Association.”

“Interviewing for the ‘Black Men Don’t Cheat’ event for SoJu was so much fun. The audience was engaged, and the men on the panel were polite, well-versed and very patient with the questions,” Lanece Carpenter, a second-year Sports Management major on the pre-law-track from San Antonio, Texas.  “The panel was enlightening and opened up a lot of conversations about dating and relationships. Even though some of the men, unfortunately, did not make it into the ‘Faithful Black Men’s Association,’ we still have faith in them.” 

Carpenter also says she hopes to see a “Black Women Don’t Cheat” event in the future. 

The last “SOJU Night Live ” event was hosted on Instagram Live and participants talked about all things Hampton. Hosted by Drake Tucker and Tenel Robison, topics included building the campus environment for the 2021-2022 academic school year, suggestions for potential events and class engagement activities. During the live, students also talked about having more class events since they have not been on campus in over a year. 

As the semester comes to a close, many students of the Quintessence and Onyx classes are excited to return in the fall in person to continue all of the traditions Hampton hosts like SOJU, but next time with the tuxes and dresses.

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