Spears AABSA Back In Business
Wednesday, February 1, 2023
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The Spears School of Business is proud to open its celebration of Black History Month by spotlighting the African American Business Student Association (AABSA) and its president, Melat Lemma.
Lemma, an MSIS major from Ethiopia, has joined forces with AABSA vice president and Tulsa native, Aaron Chambers, to breathe new life into the organization.
The group has organized a Spears Business trip to the Greenwood District for all business students on Feb. 18. The daylong trip to Tulsa includes free transportation for students, a walking tour of the Greenwood District and Black Wall Street, a tour of the Greenwood Rising Museum and guest speakers focusing on the businesses of modern-day Greenwood.
What is the AABSA all about?
Lemma: We are trying to bring back the organization for the purpose of the professional development of minority students. Not just African Americans, but everybody. I feel like every minority has some sort of a club, but the African American Business Student Association kind of brings everybody together. That's what the goal is. Last year, Cameron Shropshire restarted the AABSA from scratch, and then I took over his position and tried to keep things moving forward.
How do people get involved with the AABSA?
Lemma: We’re really excited to find people that want to get involved just like us. The best way is to give us a follow on Instagram. That’s where we post information on all of our events. We’re working on getting Campus Link up and running too. We’re just trying to get the word out as much as possible.
What is the idea behind the upcoming trip to the Greenwood District in Tulsa on Feb. 18?
Lemma: This is a trip that we took last year, too, and it's something that we try to do every year around Martin Luther King Jr. Day and Black History Month. Our goal with this trip is to highlight what it means to be a Black professional and what minorities have had to go through in the past that we can learn from, while trying to advance ourselves and follow their footsteps.
What other types of events does the AABSA have planned?
Lemma: On February 8 we have our dress to impress event. Dr. Lex Washington and a panel of people from Spears Business come in and teach us about professional and business casual attire and how to present yourself in business settings. Then, on April 5 we have a panel on negotiations, where we’ll cover things like price and other types of business negotiations. We’re also working on bringing in current business professionals to teach us what the business world is like and how we can navigate it.
Give the AABSA a follow on Instagram.