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Diversity and Equity Grant awarded to Shepherd University

“The $10,000 Grant will Expand Diversity Programs on Campus” (see Shepherd University News)
August 28, 2017

Shepherd University students are known for proudly representing their school colors of blue and gold, but this year there are students who want to make a difference for students of all colors and backgrounds.

More than 3,000 students walk on Shepherd University’s campus daily. Their various cultures and backgrounds is what students said make the campus unique.

“I often like to joke that we live in this utopia world on Shepherd’s campus, because we have so many different groups, clubs and organizations,” said Naim Muhammed, Graduate Assistant, Multicultural Student Affairs.

Two Shepherd Graduate Assistants have dedicated their time to bringing these people together.

Keira Cale applied for the Diversity for Equity Grant that was recently awarded to the school.

“It comes from the West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission, so we were really fortunate to get $10,000 again this year for our program,” said Cale.

According to Cale, the money will be used to expand diversity programs.

“So, we actually have a ton of programs that we are using the money for. We have a Flamenca dance company coming in for Hispanic Heritage Month, SafeTalk, which is a suicide alertness training, [and] some new food options that will be parallel to different heritage months coming up,” said Cale.

But the two want others to understand diversity is more than what’s on the outside.

“We also like to touch on some of the less physical facets of identity, such as mental health [and] sexual orientation,” said Cale.

They said they are looking forward to turning a campus into a community.

“It speaks to our campus as a whole; the amount of appreciation we have for each other and the amount of acceptance,” said Muhammed.

The graduate assistants said the all-inclusive programs will be ongoing throughout the year.

One of the upcoming programs the Multicultural Affairs Office is coordinating is the Out of Darkness Suicide Prevention Walk coming up in October.