February 02, 2023

ICI January 2023 Update

A message from Meaghan Kozar, Ph.D. (she/her)

We cannot underestimate the power of support taking form when human beings reach out to other human beings and ask, “How are you really doing?” In the past few days, I am grateful for the words of support shared with me that include, “Please take care of yourself,” and “Let me know how I can support you.” As staff, faculty and administrators, we forget that we are also navigating through a world of trauma with the recent and recurring tragedies taking place nationally and globally.
Supporting student and community needs has been foundational to the Inclusive Campus Initiative (ICI), yet it does not mean we have it all figured out. Knowing this, I remain hopeful of what we are achieving with the ICI. One hopeful moment is the work of our committed ICI task force teams. After a year and a half of identifying a tremendous gap in our support services for students and the community, the ICI Inclusive Policies, Procedures and Practices task force team is developing a plan for a coordinated effort to address trauma events that ultimately impact the MSU community. Our plan is the creation of a Critical Trauma Response Team that would activate a network of communication campuswide, allowing for a united response plan when urgent community support is needed. 
In addition to the urgent student and community support, our support needs to be proactive and consistent. Today, the outgoing ASMSU CDEIO Nadir Hamid asked if he could set up weekly meetings with me for ongoing support as he transitions out of his role. I enthusiastically accepted. Nadir’s leadership and partnership with the ICI has been invaluable in influencing our work. He, like so many student leaders, has been doing outstanding advocacy work to support the communities they represent. Take some time to review Nadir’s Fall 2022 CDEIO report. I applaud the commitment of many staff, faculty and administrators I know (and don’t know) who offer consistent support and mentorship to their students.
Recently, I noticed our Senior Vice President for Student Life & Engagement Vennie Gore was meeting individually with several student leaders. After noticing these recurring meetings, I asked Vennie to share some insight into how long he has been meeting with students and how the time spent with student leaders influences his work. Vennie responded, “I have been meeting with student leaders for about 10 to 12 years. I see our relationship as learning partners. Student leaders share issues important to their members and also provide me with general concerns and needs of the student body in general. We also get the opportunity to solve problems and collaborate on projects.” 
I then asked Hannah Jeffrey, president of the Council of Graduate Students (COGS), how these meetings have influenced her, and she responded, “Meeting with Vennie has given graduate students a voice in the decision-making processes that so often seem to be kept behind closed doors. I am especially grateful to Vennie for providing us with the transparency that we ask for." The Inclusive Campus Initiative’s support of students takes shape in the ways their voices, experiences and perspectives are amplified and centered. 

We cannot take our foot off the pedal when it comes to support of our students, community and ourselves. We cannot predict what future traumas we will need to endure. We can no longer be business as usual because of the unpredictability of our turbulent times. We need to offer spaces for processing. We need to check in on each other, slow down and focus on healing. We need to increase mentorships. We need to rebuild our communities. We need to ask students and other community members, “What do you need?” This is what support looks like. 

What is the Inclusive Campus Initiative (ICI)?

The Inclusive Campus Initiative (ICI) at Michigan State University is a radical and transformative ground up approach that centers student voices, builds partnerships with senior administration, and increases communications and collaborations with campus partners in creating a sustainable inclusive campus ecosystem.

Stay Connected!

What’s New to the ICI?

Consolidated the ICI Task Forces from four to two

Developing a plan for activating a Community Trauma Response Team

ICI Campus Communities Lunches Spring 2023 Schedule

ICI “Food For Thought” Cultural Community Dinners

Upcoming Events

Anti-Discrimination Policy Summit 2023
For questions or to request an invitation, please reach out to ocr@msu.edu.

Multicultural Center Community Engagement Session
Registration Link
For questions, contact Tiana Carter at carte282@msu.edu.

New Assistant Director for DEI Florensio Hernandez

Office of Admissions, Assistant Director for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion
Expectations for this new Admissions role include all the following, but not limited to: 

  • Act as a liaison with stakeholders, such as our residential colleges, Neighborhood Student Success Collaborative and off-campus community-based organizations.
  • Determine effectiveness of DEI programs. 
    • Assess and modify program content and schedule to meet university goals.
    • Exercise independent judgment in developing action plans for improving DEI programming and marketing materials.
    • Work with marketing and communications team to develop materials and website content relevant to DEI initiatives.
  • Use demographic information historic enrollment trends, market forecasting and prospect data to develop and implement DEI recruitment plans and strategies.
  • Interview and counsel prospective students and their parents, to assist in their understanding of transfer and first-year student awards and admission process information and provide guidance to students in developing educational plans to achieve educational goals.
  • Review applications for admission to determine eligibility for acceptance to the university.
  • Travel to visit secondary schools and community colleges to inform counselors and students about the university.

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