PORTLAND, Ore (KOIN) — A professor at Portland State University is sharing his experience with 19-year old Amara Marluke, a rising student leader that was shot and killed near campus on Monday by another PSU student, who is now in police custody.
Bright Alozie, an assistant professor of Black Studies at PSU, said that he wanted to honor Marluke’s life and activism, and said that the world deserves to know how good of a human she was.
“Why do the good people just go? You know, she was one of the good people,” Alozie said. “She was beloved, and I mean it when I say that.”
Alozie said that he had an instant connection with Marluke, and that it pains him to talk about her in the past tense, as an array of flowers now lay in her place at the site of the shooting.
“In my class, you could tell her passion for equity, for justice, for change. And it really broke my heart, when I learned that she was the person,” Alozie said. “I saw her full of life enthusiasm, and she had a really bright future. And look what happened.”
Alozie describes Marluke as wise beyond her years and a catalyst for change, leading PSU’s Black Student Union. She was also a songwriter.
“I saw her actively involved, actively seeking the welfare of others, putting others ahead of herself,” Alozie said.
As the campus honors Marluke, Alozie says people should honor what she stood for.
“We should honor commitment to equity, commitment to fighting injustice, commitment to inclusivity and diversity,” Alozie said.
Alozie said that he doesn’t want young women’s lives to be taken like this again, and wants to start a conversation about violence and safety. He also said that silence is no longer an option and that campus security and supports need to be increased at PSU.