New department focuses on underrepresented students

On Tuesday, the Woman’s Resource Center hosted a kick-off for the Office of Inclusion and Intercultural Relations’ new department: DiversityEd.

According to the Office of Inclusion and Intercultural Relations’ pamphlet, “the Diversity and Social Justice Education offers programs and creates opportunities for transformational education.”

DiversityEd, located within the program of Diversity and Social Justice Education, used to exist as a program on intergroup relations.

In the passed year it has evolved into the current DiversityEd, which provides students with training, workshops, and courses to build capacity around campus about diversity. Its topics include segregation on campus, social identity, stereotypes, and social identity.

Ross Wantland, assistant director at the Office of Inclusion and Intercultural Relations, said, “I think that you gain an awareness of yourself and others around you through exploring diversity. It gives you the opportunities to create change.”

He also explained that DiversityEd is a peer educator program made by undergraduates for undergraduates. You can even request your own workshop on the website if DiversityEd does not already have it.

“We focus on underrepresented students but by helping everyone, we help the whole campus climate,” he said.

Wantland explained that DiversityEd is different from other cultural programs because its focus is to build understanding among diverse people.

“We broaden the conversation. We not only encompass one group. Our goal is to educate the campus,” he said.

The importance of understanding others, Wantland said, is found in understanding our differences.

Maria Catarello, sophomore in LAS, said, “Since this is such a big university there are so many different people here and they bring a

lot of different perspectives to the table.”