A new leader

Osazee Edebiri

Photo By Robert Speer

Osazee Edebiri will be the president of Chico State’s Associated Students next school year. At just 19 years old, the surprisingly young senior is looking forward to the new year and a new office—he’ll be moving from his position as head of the Multicultural Affairs Council. While Edebiri would have finished school in December, he’ll stay on until May to fulfill his year as president. A few weeks ago, The Orion, Chico State’s campus newspaper, reported that Edebiri had the words “bitch” and “nigga” on his MySpace page. He was one of two candidates who was found with “questionable” content online, and both have since removed said content. The words apparently didn’t affect Edebiri’s campaign—he won with 52 percent of the vote.

What do you plan to do as president?

I plan to work on sustainability, diversity and student knowledge, and awareness of what’s going on on campus.

How do you want to work on those things?

Mostly I see it as being approachable and being the type of person that students come to see on a regular basis. They need to feel comfortable coming to see me. With sustainability, it’s furthering the movement on campus. We have a sustainability council and just started a sustainability fund. For diversity, there’s the cross-cultural center—we have some funding for it and are trying to get more.

Why is this important?

Diversity’s not just a term for minorities; it’s a term for all cultures, creeds, all groups. It’s more absolute than that. My example is when I went to international neighbors’ week we played charades and they missed only one out of 50 questions. I wondered why they missed so few—it’s because they had so many different minds, and when you’re playing with teams in a diverse group like that, one person is able to help everyone else understand at least one concept. It’s rich with different backgrounds and knowledge.

What about the MySpace page?

I didn’t want to be misrepresented on something that does represent me. I’ve had those words there for a long time; I’ve had that MySpace for several years. They’ve just been on there forever, so I changed them. The words weren’t directed at anyone.