Markayela Johnson

(Rock Hill, S.C.) — A new student organization that is intended to educate people about hip-hop culture has started at Winthrop University.

The Hip Hop Matters Club was founded by Alisha Sweatt as an offshoot of another group called Hip Hop Makes Me Feel, which is “a movement concentrated on spreading the knowledge of hip-hop as well as influencing a positive reputation on the culture of hip-hop,” according to the group’s Facebook page.

“So when I started doing the Hip Hop Makes Me Feel programs they were really successful on Winthrop’s campus,” said Sweatt, who graduated from the school in May.

Sweatt travels to different colleges and universities to host forums that promote a positive image of hip-hop culture.

Sweatt says one of the main purposes of the club is to establish that hip-hop culture is positive.

She said Winthrop students kept asking her how they could become involved, which motivated her to form the hip-hop club on campus.

“I just wanted to bring the culture to campus but also keeping it very authentic,” she said.

“It’s basically to show Winthrop University and educate them on the culture of hip-hop and what it all entails; like past and the future and the present of hip-hop,” said Brittanni Gunn, the president of Hip Hop Matters.

The club recently held their third meeting, which has drawn interest from a number of people, according to Gunn.

Throughout the semester, the club plans to host different events including a forum that will discuss current music and disputes between artists.

There are also plans for a hip-hop Jeopardy, which will quiz contestants on different types of groups and lyrics, and a service project for the holidays.

Additionally, club organizers hope to bring hip-hop artists to Winthrop for concerts at events like homecoming.

“Our club is so diverse and we just love all types of people,” said Gunn. “It doesn’t matter your race or ethnicity. I mean a teacher could come in and that would be fun, but we’re all welcoming.”