Multicultural Resource Center, spring 2023
This quarter, the MRC had over 15 collaborations with student groups, staff, faculty and campus departments. Many of these events were hosted in the center’s lounge, while others were hosted across campus and in the Binghamton community.
The Fleishman Center and the Multicultural Resource Center collaborated on the “Multicultural Flip Fair” on Feb. 7. This program reversed the roles of the employers and students at typical job fairs and was designed for student organizations to have the opportunity to table for potential employers. This program was a great opportunity for multicultural organizations to network with professionals, spread their organization’s mission and create future connections. One hundred thirty-two students checked in, representing 31 organizations and approximately 50 representatives from 26 employers.
The MRC also partnered with University Police and the Youth and Police Initiative (YPI) for the third session in their Train the Trainer program in collaboration with Binghamton and Johnson City school districts. This program is designed to facilitate difficult conversations between middle/high school students and police officers. The five-day program was held in February.
The MRC also hosted several Intercultural Communication workshops for various departments and organizations, including Alpha Epsilon Phi, SEEK interns, Bartle Library student staff members, an Education Minor class and the Office of International Education and Global Initiatives.
The MRC opened the quarter with two Welcome Week events, including an open house on Jan. 18 with over 100 attendees. This event welcomed new and returning students, faculty and staff and served as an opportunity to share new and existing resources. Additionally, the New Student of Color Networking event on Jan. 19 offered an opportunity for students to network and connect with staff, faculty and students of color. Students gain advice and mentorship from campus community members who may help aid in a smooth transition to Binghamton University. Over 50 students attended.
The MRC worked with admissions to revive the MRC Letter Writing Campaign. From Feb. 20-24, students from over 20 cultural organizations hand-wrote 250 letters to incoming students of color, sharing their experience on campus and providing advice on being successful at Binghamton.
For Black History Month, the MRC worked with the Black Student Union and the Division of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion to sponsor a keynote talk by American activist Tamika Mallory, one of the leading organizers of the 2017 Women’s March. The MRC also sponsored a reception dinner before the event with BSU e-board members and DEI professional staff. The event took place on Feb. 24 in the Mandela Room.
The MRC hosted the first annual EMPOWER Leadership Conference on March 18, in partnership with the Fleishman Center, School of Management and PULSE. The conference provided professional development workshops as well as facilitated group sessions from alumni who shared their expertise and experiences.
The Men of Color Planning Committee was awarded the Shirley Bird Perry Staff Driven Program of the Year Award, recognizing an innovative and impactful program implemented by campus staff. The MRC and the planning committee are currently preparing for the second annual conference to take place April 14-15.
Mentoring and leadership programs
The MRC continues to support the B-College Bound and New Student of Color mentoring programs. The B-College Bound program hosted a mixer for mentors and mentees and a workshop on public speaking and goal setting. The New Student of Color mentoring program hosted two mixers this quarter with a total of 51 attendees.
The Pathways to Inclusive Leadership Program is a joint effort of the MRC, Q Center, School of Management, Fleishman Center, Center for Civic Engagement, and Student Transition and Success. The 12-person cohort has had an orientation and the first workshop on the Foundations of Leadership in a Diverse World, with additional programming planned throughout the semester.
Additional resources, information and outreach
The MRC continues to expand student resources, partnerships and outreach, including two initiatives with a mental wellness focus developed with the University Counseling Center (UCC): “Let’s Talk” and “Sister’s Circle.” “Sister’s Circle” is a new program for women of color to come together and build a support network through workshops and engaging speakers who address issues affecting women of color. In March, St. Clair Detrick-Jules, an award-winning filmmaker, photographer, author, activist and public speaker, hosted a workshop and book signing centered around her book My Beautiful Black Hair.
The MRC also partnered with local black-owned business, Stellar Human Thrift Shop, to host a pop-up shop on Feb. 24. Over 55 individuals attended the event.
MRC staff remained active on the Homecoming planning and three search committees: UCC senior counselor search, MRC assistant director search, speech and debate assistant director search.