Skip to Content, Navigation, or Footer.

Celebrating marginalized leaders within the Setonian

As we celebrate the Setonian’s centennial anniversary, it's prudent to celebrate the gender and cultural diversity in the Setonian staff since our school became co-educational almost 60 years ago. The Setonian is widely regarded as the voice of Seton Hall’s community, and by researching the history of marginalized leaders representing this paper, I’ve been familiarized with the former voices in the Setonian that have molded the foundation of a diverse set of staff today. Traveling decades down the paper’s archives shows a vivid school life, all encapsulated by former issues of this paper.

The academic year of 1974, a decade after our campus became coed, was filled with monumental events, all reflected in Setonian articles. From the initiation of Seton Hall’s legacy in women's intercollegiate basketball by the beginning of women’s athletic competition to concerts from artists like Bruce Springsteen on campus, each event is preserved within the Setonian

While there were no students of minority backgrounds on the writing staff of the Setonian in 1974, Feature Editor and sociology major Frank Bellusio wrote an article spotlighting guest speaker Nikki Giovanni, a poet and trailblazer in the Black Arts Movement.

In his archived article “The Magic of Nikki Giovanni,” Bellusio highlights Giovanni as a guest speaker at Seton Hall and diligently quotes parts of her speech on the importance of leaving a legacy of anti-racism within universities for students to come.

Celebrating the Setonian’s marginalized leaders begins with Tiffany Do, the managing editor in 2015. Expressing her perspective as a queer minority through the Setonian was the beginning of her journalism major, and her honest and witty features cemented her legacy here at the newspaper. 

Do’s senior article, “Finding a Home in the Headlines and Deadlines,” shares her valuable experiences in finding a sense of belonging here at Seton Hall, as she states, “Seton Hall has been anything but a walk in the park. But, and this is rather large but, the Setonian has provided a space in which I’ve made a home.”

Do’s perspective is a representational take on the struggle of finding a sense of belonging as a minority and calls attention to the invaluable outlet writing can be for self-expression. “[The Setonian] has also presented me with opportunities to do award-winning work, voice my experiences dealing with depression and social anxiety, and ultimately do what I love and want to continue doing for the rest of my life,” she said.

The idea of voicing one's experiences resonates with the current members of the Setonian as it continues to be a platform of expression for marginalized voices. 

While exploring this topic further, I had the privilege of meeting with the current News Editor, Dareen Abuwaik. Joining the Setonian amidst the pandemic and progressing through the positions of assistant news editor and news editor, Abuwaik’s experience culminates into a competent discography reflecting her work ethic, passion, and identity as a Palestinian American.

Her articles illuminate topics many without shared experience are oblivious to and deliver extensive research in a digestible and lively way, with features like “Why Arab American youth care about the U.S. Census” communicating the lack of ethnic options on the U.S. census. Her time here has had an invaluable effect, as she has spread awareness of the Muslim faith and Islamic culture by introducing diverse article topics and informing the student body about the celebratory gatherings and prayers during Ramadan.

As a part of this year's graduating class, there is a net gain in cultural understanding from her roles. While writing her senior reflection, Abukwaik aims to focus on her identity and the Setonian after experiencing nearly half a decade of interaction with the broader student body and using writing as self-expression. 

The legacies left within decades-old Setonian issues show the power of writing as it preserves memories and inspires unity that transcends superficial differences. 

Enjoy what you're reading? Get content from The Setonian delivered to your inbox

Giovanni’s feature was an interesting speech to uncover at the start of my research, but hearing her words was a graceful preface for starting an article about Seton Hall’s diversity.

In an address to Seton Hall’s class of 1974, Giovanni said, “when you graduate from Seton Hall, you should not leave a void for the next Black student who comes along. You should not leave behind the same bad teacher or racist dean.”

Tiffany Clay is a writer for Campus Life. She can be reached at


Powered by SNworks Solutions by The State News
All Content © 2024 The Setonian