Key Initiative 17:
The Center for Multicultural Life & Leadership will strengthen interracial/intercultural relations and provide a safe, welcoming, supportive environment for students of all backgrounds, guided by the simple premise that all individuals are of equal human value and that the campus climate should be reflective of that value.
The Center will create a space where students can congregate, develop programming, act as a resource to the campus, and have immediate access to academic support. It will foster intercultural understanding by moving beyond the basic and superficial “music/food/dance/dress” aspects of culture to provide individual student support, small group support, acculturation and language support, mentoring, and faculty education. Establishing a Multicultural Center at Cedar Crest is essential for the College to remain relevant and meet the needs of a 21st century student body, cultivate global leadership skills, and attract and retain talented multicultural students.
Having this Center on campus sends a clear message to prospective students that the college is committed to developing and supporting a diverse student body.
Multicultural students and student organizations have expressed an ongoing and profound desire for sanctioned support and advocacy in the form of a Multicultural Center that would speak to all of the academic and social challenges faced by this population of students while at the same time giving them the opportunity to engage the campus community in relevant and current multicultural issues.
The added benefit of the Center is its function as a resource for all students, aiding the College in its initiative on global women’s leadership. Programs at the Center will be inclusive, fostering interaction and understanding between people of diverse backgrounds, preparing Cedar Crest students to lead at home and abroad. The Center will also be a resource to faculty and staff so the campus community can increase cultural competency, develop a culturally responsive curricula and supportive learning environment, and learn culturally sensitive teaching and learning strategies.
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