President's Report Masthead
September 30, 2018

MRC/Q-Center/ Divisional Retreat/Diversity Fellow updates

MRC co-sponsored Binghamton Enrichment Program and JUMP Nation Skate Estate Party

The Multicultural Resource Center (MRC), along with the Binghamton Enrichment Program (BEP), and the Juvenile Urban Multicultural Program (JUMP Nation) provided a networking event at Skate Estate on July 7, for newly enrolled freshman students who attended Binghamton University during the summer 2018 term. It was the second year for the event and it provided an opportunity for students from our cultural campus community to meet new EOP students in the summer program, along with the opportunity to skate and play laser tag and other games. MRC and BEP staff have provided some great feedback as we see the event improve year by year.

Divisional two-day staff retreat

The Division of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) held its annual summer retreat with administrative staff as it continues to grow and develop into a larger team. As we prepared for the fall 2018 semester, Nicole Sirju-Johnson created a two-day agenda to examine the division’s missions and goals, build initiatives that help grow our newly created center spaces for the MRC and Q Center, prepare for changes as we anticipate the upcoming hire of a chief diversity officer (CDO), and also included de-stress activities, icebreakers and team-building activities. The second day of the retreat consisted of a visit to the Southern Tier Independence Center (STIC), where professional and administrative staff participated in “XSCAPE” rooms that challenge your skills in puzzles, riddles and mind-bending obstacles. This facility provided a great way for staff members to bond and come together to solve complex problems while realizing the strengths of each member of our team. 

Presentations during 2018 Freshman Orientation

MRC and Q Center staff worked alongside the Services with Students with Disabilities to provide an all-inclusive presentation on Identity for newly enrolled freshman and transfer students during the summer. We took the opportunity to discuss our roles as professionals and our center spaces can provide students a place of diversity, inclusiveness, and education as they navigate the campus community during the fall 2018 semester. We provided a PowerPoint presentation, along with some interactive activities to keep student engaged. Additionally, DEI was represented at all orientation sessions throughout the summer months and will continue those presentations in the fall as necessary.

Diversity Fellow responsibilities during the summer 2018 session

As DEI diversity fellow, Jose L. Maldonado has served as DEI representative on Binghamton University’s Homecoming Committee and been able to provide logistical updates, recommendations and suggestions on events and programs that will be hosted by the division. We anticipate that the number of alumni of color attending fall 2018 Homecoming in October will increase due to the 50th anniversaries of the Educational Opportunity Program and the Black Student Union (BSU), which holds its signature fashion show event that weekend. We also collaborate on the Alumni of Color Networking Event prior to the BSU Fashion Show and host an MRC Open House ahead of our highly anticipated Alumni of Color Day Party at Tailgate.

At the start of the fall 2018 semester, Maldonado also began serving as the faculty advisor for the Juvenile Urban Multicultural Program (JUMP Nation), along with serving as the primary advisor for the Binghamton University Chapter of the National Society of Leadership and Success. These assignments will help to ensure that the organizations continues to work toward goals as set by their mission statements, provide critical and supportive advisement to the organization’s leadership boards, as well as ensure that they have adequate resources from the University and the campus community.

MRC, DEI and Q Center Graduate Program Assistant summer orientation and training

With the leadership from all divisional staff, newly hired graduate students in the division participated in a four-day training and orientation that incorporated functions, duties and responsibilities. Graduate students participated in team-builder activities and our cultural competency module, along with planning and preparations sessions for the fall semester. The staff for each respective location within the division took the opportunity to build goals and expectations as we began to learn more about each new staff member.

Welcome Week programming through the MRC: New Students of Color Networking Event, U-Fest tabling, Multicultural Extravaganza and MRC House Party

During the first weeks of the fall 2018 semester, the MRC hosted and facilitated several events and programs for returning students and newly enrolled students. The first event was our New Students of Color Networking event, held in Old Union Hall during Welcome Week that provided an opportunity for new students to meet students, faculty and staff from across the campus. The program was well-attended by about 90 students, staff, and faculty. DEI offices also tabled at University Fest, which has grown tremendously as the MRC has participated annually with giveaways, prizes and general information resources.

The Multicultural Extravaganza: Sundaze event was one of our larger events of the Welcome Week series. It was co-sponsored by the Student Association’s Vice President for Multicultural Affairs and provided an opportunity for cultural student organizations, fraternities and sororities, religious-affiliated organizations and other University-recognized groups to come and table “BBQ Style” on the Old Dickinson field. There were student performances and prize raffles. The ME Committee provided food and refreshments, a bounce house, games and obstacle courses, along with a DJ. More than 300 attended.

MRC to supervise tabling and posting in the Glenn G. Bartle Library breezeways

Beginning in the fall semester, the MRC will now oversee and supervise the new tabling reservation process for student organizations and Greek organizations in the Bartle Library. This has been an ongoing project worked on by several professional staff and Graduate Program Assistants to ensure smooth transparency, uniformity and increased opportunities for all student organizations who wish to promote events on campus. Students have the capability to reserve a table and two chairs to table during the hours of noon-4 p.m. weekdays so they can table, promote and sell baked goods and items at their tables. There is a “first-come, first-served” policy to reserve tables. MRC Student Managers will also provide oversight over the newly added posting boards throughout the corridors of the Bartle Library main floor.