Alcorn’s 2nd annual Unity Through Diversity Week engages campus and community

Alcorn’s 2nd annual Unity Through Diversity Week engages campus and community

As a vehicle for enhancing the spirit of community and inclusion at Alcorn State University, the Office of Educational Equity and Inclusion hosted the 2nd annual Unity Through Diversity Week from April 21-26.

Over 1250 students, faculty, staff, alumni and community members participated in the week-long celebration and experienced a host of dynamic programs designed to encourage cross-cultural understanding and foster unity. The Week’s highlights were the kickoff Interfaith Service, Multicultural Festival, and the rousing keynote address by noted scholar Michael Eric Dyson who spoke on “The Injustice of Justice for Just Us: Doing Right By Members of Other Communities”.

“I thought that it was a great lecture that left me in awe of Dyson’s brilliance and motivated me to make sure that I treat all people with equal respect and dignity,” shared Jarvis Cole, a senior general studies major from De Kalb, Mississippi. “The audience was inspired to fight for injustice not only for their own benefit but to be allies for other groups and communities.”

At the closing awards luncheon, several Alcorn students, faculty and staff were named Diversity Champions for promoting the University’s spirit of equity and inclusion, and received memorable awards: Dr. Katherine Clark, assistant professor of psychology, Dr. Robert Z. Carr, dean of the School of Education and Psychology, Charles Mawusi, graduate student in the Department of Agriculture, Reginald Thomas, a sophomore majoring in psychology, Addie Davis, academic advisor in the Academic Student Support Center, and Hongli Wen, Fulbright language teaching assistant from China.

The program also included: the moving Journey of Understanding program, workshops on cultural identity, immigration, and mental health, a phenomenal female firsts panel featuring Constance Slaughter-Harvey, the first African-American to earn her law degree from Ole Miss, and Sally Garland, the first female mayor of Crystal Springs, Mississippi, salsa dance lessons, and a community service project to promote intergenerational dialogue.

“This action-packed week was so exciting, and I want to thank all members of the Alcorn family for supporting diversity and inclusion efforts throughout the year,” said Dr. Derek Greenfield, director of educational equity and inclusion.

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Women Firsts Panel registration.

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Women Firsts Panel.

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Dyson addressing the audience.

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Dyson singing autographs.

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 Diversity Awards Luncheon.

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Reginald Thomas (L) receiving award from Dr. Greenfield (R).

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Diversity Champions performing Indian traditional dance.