Profiles of the Month Archive

March 2009
April 2009
May 2009
June 2009
July/August 2009
September 2009
October 2009
November 2009
December 2009 - Winter Break
January 2010
February 2010
March 2010
April 2010
May 2010
June - August 2010 - Summer Break
September 2010
October 2010
November 2010
December 2010 - Winter Break
January 2011
February 2011
March 2011
May - June 2011 - Summer Hiatus

March 2011

Dr. Missy (Mary) S. Alexander

Missy

Title/Position/Department at Marist College: Assistant Dean, School of Communication & the Arts

Length of time at Marist College: 9 years

College/University attended:

New York University: Media Ecology (PhD)

Hunter College: Communication (MA)

Hunter College: Anthropology (BA)

Professional and Cultural Organizations/Affiliations:

New York Communication Association, Eastern Communication Association, National Communication Association, International Communication Association, International Society for General Semantics, Media Ecology Association, New Day Repertory Theatre

Hometown/Birthplace: Groton, MA (born) Raised in Accord, New York

Ethnic/Cultural Identity: White, Scottish heritage

What does the word “diversity” mean to you?

Diversity means learning new perspectives on how we live by engaging people whose lives are different from mine. I think diversity is a way of life.

How do you contribute to diversity at Marist College?

My classes always include a component that addresses assumptions about culture and the biases that result from those assumptions.

Do you have any diversity-related reading materials (books, articles, magazines, etc) that you would recommend to others?

In several classes I use readings from Edward T. Hall. The Silent Language offers a “map of culture” which is essentially a list of ten categories/activities that exist in every culture. Using this map we can see how different cultures define the categories differently. This opens up a dialogue on those differences.

Please provide an interesting fact about yourself.

In addition to studying and teaching communication I am a singer. I like to sing many genres of music and I love singing Shakira songs in Spanish.

Any other personal information you’d like to share (family, music, favorite food, hobbies, etc.)?

My husband, Bill, and our children, Eva & Michael, have traveled to several other countries – Australia, Ireland, Spain, Greece, Scotland, Mexico, Brazil, and Israel. We often travel with our Israeli friends and their children making cultural diversity obvious and fun for all of us.


February 2011

Whitney McCalla
Whitney

Major: Fashion Design

Professional and Cultural Organizations/Affiliations: Former Public Relations Officer, Black Student Union

Hometown: Kennett, MO

Birthplace: Milwaukee, WI

Ethnic/Cultural Identity: African American

What does the word “diversity” mean to you?

Diversity consists of people of multiple backgrounds financially, ethnically, and regionally.

How do you contribute to diversity at Marist College?

As a young, African American woman from Missouri, I contribute to the further growth of ethnic and regional diversity at Marist College.

Do you have any diversity-related reading materials (books, articles, magazines, etc) that you would recommend to others? 

Letters to a Young Sister by Hill Harper is a very inspirational book. It encourages young women, specifically, young African American women, to hold on to their dreams and to recognize their worth. Once we have a clear vision and value who we are, we are able to live life more confidently and with a clear purpose.

Please provide one interesting fact about yourself.

My very first time ever being in New York was on move-in day freshman year.

January 2011

Jason Greenhouse

Jason 

Position/Department at Marist College: Resident Director, Housing and Residential Life

Length of time at Marist College: 5 years

College/University attended: S.U.N.Y New Paltz

Degree(s)/Field of Study: BA, Sociology

Hometown/Birthplace: Manhattan, New York

Ethnic/Cultural Identity: Puerto Rican/Jewish

What does the word “diversity” mean to you?

Diversity means being able to adapt to your surroundings though your life experiences and being successful at it. The culture in which how you were raised and educated contributes to the success you will have. It also defines who you are and what you bring to the table on a daily basis.

How do you contribute to diversity at Marist College?

As a native New Yorker, born and raised, I am accustomed to dealing with people from different walks of life on a daily basis. I use my people skills to connect to the students on many levels. Whether it’s academic or personal issues, I have all kinds of students coming to me for advice. I bring a different perspective and handle each situation professionally but injected with my own personality and personal touch which is not typical of Student Affairs, but is effective. I tell them exactly how it is and I do not baby our students and hold them accountable for their actions because we need to prepare them for the "real world."

Please provide an interesting fact about yourself.

Since 2003, the furthest west I have been in the US is Tennessee. However, I have traveled to Europe twice where I visited 5 countries: Italy, Spain, Ireland, Holland, and France.

Any other personal information you’d like to share?

During my free time, I love riding my motorcycle - I don't even need a destination! I also love to travel and wish I could afford to do it more often. I love to dance, especially to Salsa and Merengue. Lastly, every time I go back home to the city I HAVE go to my favorite restaurant on East 116th Street between Lexington and 1st Avenue called “Cuchifritos” (koo-chee-free-tohs). They make the best Spanish food around!

November 2010

Mark A. Boyle

 Mark Boyle

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Major: Business with an emphasis Human Resources

Class: 2012

Professional and Cultural Organizations/Affiliations: BSU, ARCO

Hometown/Birthplace: Guyana, South America; Moscow is my birthplace.

Ethnic/Cultural Identity: Black/ Caribbean

What does the word “diversity” mean to you?

When I hear the word diversity, I think of the of the opportunity to interact with people of diverse backgrounds and knowledge that I can obtain from them.

How do you contribute to diversity at Marist College?

I try to bring some of my Caribbean traditions, values and also some of my special Caribbean lingo.

Please provide an interesting fact about yourself.

I was born in Moscow in Russia.

Any other personal information you’d like to share (family, music, favorite food, hobbies, etc.)?

My favorite dish is Pepper Pot. This is our national dish which is served during Christmas time.

October 2010

Lamar Bennett
Lamar Bennett

Title/Position/Department at Marist College: Assistant Professor of Public Administration, School of Management

Time at Marist College: Started full-time in September 2010; worked as an Adjunct since 2009

College/University attended: Rutgers University-New Brunswick (B.A.), Rutgers University-Newark (M.P.A.), and American University (Ph.D.)

Degree(s)/Field of Study: I earned my Bachelor of Arts in Urban Studies and my Masters and Ph.D. in Public Administration.

Professional and Cultural Organizations/Affiliations: Prior to coming to Marist, I was a member of Diversity in Academia a nation-wide program that helps improve opportunities for minorities to enter and complete doctoral programs in public affairs and public policy. I am also a member of the American Society of Public Administration.

Hometown/Birthplace: I was born and raised in Bergen County, New Jersey. Currently, I live in Queens, New York.

Ethnic/Cultural Identity: African-American and Afro-Trinidadian.

What does the word “diversity” mean to you?
Diversity is a broad understanding of culture and identity. Growing up in the New York metro area, I have had an opportunity to learn about different people and cultural practices. I have learned from these experiences that to be successful in work and life one must understand how different cultures interact.

How do you contribute to diversity at Marist College?
Through my teaching I provide students with a host of different cultural perspectives from my experience as a person of color and through my life experience interacting with people from different backgrounds. It is my goal that students take this information and use it to improve public programs and policies.

Do you have any diversity-related reading materials (books, articles, magazines, etc) that you would recommend to others?
Reading is a big hobby of mine. From my recent reading list I would recommend the following books: The Intuitionist by Colson Whitehead, Native Speaker by Chang-rae Lee, and The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz. These books confront race relations from three different perspectives (Black, Latino, and Asian). These books show that there are many similarities as well as differences when it comes to the minority experience in America.

Please provide one interesting fact about yourself.
I was a co-host/producer of a hip-hop internet radio show for five years.

Any other personal information you’d like to share (family, music, favorite food, hobbies, etc.)?
I’ve been married for two years. My hobbies include: The New York Mets, reading, talking politics, listening to music, bike riding, hiking, road trips, and eating ethnic food.

September 2010

Wilalberto De Los Santos

 Wil De Los Santos

Title/Position/Department at Marist College: Coordinator for First Year Programs and Leadership Development.

Time at Marist College: 2 years

College/University attended: I received my Bachelor’s Degree from SUNY New Paltz and my Masters Degree for the University at Albany.

Degree(s)/Field of Study: I earned my Bachelor of Arts in Radio/Television Production and Black Studies and my Master of Arts in Africana Studies

Professional and Cultural Organizations/Affiliations: In addition to my role at Marist, I am a member of the National Academic Advising Association and serve as the Administrative Advisor to the Black Student Union at Marist.

Hometown/Birthplace: My hometown is in Bronx, New York and I was born in Rio Piedras, Puerto Rico. My Parents were born and raised in the Dominican Republic.

Ethnic/Cultural Identity: Dominican (Caribbean)

What does the word “diversity” mean to you? Diversity is an opportunity to see who I am and who I can be in relation to the world around me. It is an appreciation and a sharing of cultures. It is an opportunity for leaders to go beyond their cultural and environmental boundaries and become more than what they currently are. Without diversity, there is no holistic growth.

How do you contribute to diversity at Marist College? The Office of First Year Programs and Leadership Development (FYP&LD) works tirelessly to foster diversity on campus by offering a variety of programs in the areas of professional and academic student development and community.

As a Coordinator for FYP & LD, I have been able to raise students’ awareness of the various clubs, organizations and offices that are available to assist with their needs. In my role coupled with serving as an advisor to the Black Student Union, I gain insight to the students’ cultural pulse which in turn helps me serve my community accordingly.

Do you have any diversity-related reading materials (books, articles, magazines, etc) that you would recommend to others? One of my favorite books is, Down These Mean Streets by Piri Thomas. This true story shows the challenges that Piri faced with his cultural identity and the difficulties that he faced living in Harlem.

Another one of my favorite books, which changed my outlook on education, was The Autobiography of Malcolm X as told by Alex Hailey. This book engages the reader to understand the life of Malcolm X and the knowledge that he adopted to become a better man.

Please provide one interesting fact about yourself. I was blessed to study abroad in West Africa (Senegal, Cote D’ Voire and Ghana) right after graduate school. I learned a lot about myself as a person and how much more effective I should be to my community.

Any other personal information you’d like to share (family, music, favorite food, hobbies, etc.)? I am a newly wed!


May 2010

Ivette Romero

Ivette Romero

Title/Position/Department at Marist College: Professor of Spanish; Coordinator of the Latin American and Caribbean Studies Program

Time at Marist College: 14 years

College/University attended: Cornell University

Degree(s)/Field of Study: PhD in Romance Studies/French Literature

Professional and Cultural Organizations/Affiliations:

- Association of Caribbean Women Writers and Scholars
- Caribbean Studies Association
- Latin American Studies Association
- Modern Languages Association
- Puerto Rican Studies Association

Hometown/Birthplace: Raised in Cabo Rojo, Puerto Rico; born in New York, NY

Ethnic/Cultural Identity: Latina/Puerto Rican

What does the word “diversity” mean to you?
The word “diversity” refers to much more than content or a specific number of people representing various groups. “Diversity” is a way of seeing oneself in and interacting with the world. It is a way of seeing through all the boundaries thought to be between oneself and an “other.” Perhaps it is the ability to see oneself in the other. Most of all, diversity is the state of not accepting to become invisible, regardless of one’s racial, national, ethnic, religious, sexual identity, or social makeup. Sometimes there is a degree of comfort and power in feeling invisible, of feeling that one is colorless, undetectable, or unnoticed; diversity is knowing that this sense of comfort is false and that maintaining power by protecting one’s invisibility is in itself a hostile act. Diversity is realizing that each one of us has an extremely complex background made up of multiple strands and that purity is a myth.

How do you contribute to diversity at Marist College?
I contribute to diversity by being. I contribute by breathing, getting dressed in the morning, eating with others, walking with others, talking to others. As a professor, I contribute to diversity in my own classes by complicating things, by offering as many perspectives as possible, by helping students perceive the multiple and complex realities present in all our cultures, and by teaching how to see/read critically. Teaching languages is a way to open students’ horizons to the fullness and diversity of the world out there. In my view, to be monolingual is like having tunnel vision or impaired hearing—it is a handicap.

Do you have any diversity-related reading materials (books, articles, magazines, etc) that you would recommend to others?
I recommend readings from the field of Whiteness Studies (such as George Lipsitz’s The Possessive Investment in Whiteness, David Roediger's The Wages of Whiteness, Joe L. Kincheloe’s White Reign: Deploying Whiteness in America, and bell hook’s “Representations of Whiteness in the Black Imagination,” among many others) because we can only explore “diversity” here, in this geographic space, by first examining the concept of “whiteness” in the United States.

I also recommend my blog on Caribbean arts and cultures, Repeating Islands (www.repeatingislands.com), because it is a labor of love and because it teaches me every day that the Caribbean is a great example of a heterogeneous and diverse world that shifts and changes minute by minute.

Please provide one interesting fact about yourself. I love the ocean. Guess why?

Any other personal information you’d like to share (family, music, favorite food, hobbies, etc.)?

My favorite ways to explore diversity are: learning new languages (or simple phrases from various languages), listening to music, watching films, and eating different foods from all over the world. Another way is to chat with anyone on the street and (probably) ask too many questions.

Byron Gardner

Byron Gardner

 

  Undergraduate Student

  Major: Biomedical Sciences

  Classification: Sophomore

 

Professional and Cultural Organizations/Affiliations: San Bernardino Links Association Scholar, Dollar Thrifty Automotive Group Roads Scholar, Victor Valley Rotary Scholar, Phi Delta Epsilon

Hometown/Birthplace: Barstow, CA

Ethnic/Cultural Identity: African American/White

What does the word “diversity” mean to you?  A measure of differences within any group.

How do you contribute to diversity at Marist College?
I am part of an under-represented but growing number of mixed raced students and I come from California, another part of the country that people get to learn about by being around me.

Do you have any diversity-related reading materials (books, articles, magazines, etc) that you would recommend to others?
 I suggest reading TIME magazine. I received a subscription for Christmas and I already look forward to getting them in the mail. There are always articles on diversity within the world, not just America. Also I would suggest a required reading from my social inequality class: A Peoples History of the United States by Howard Zinn. It is a history book that tells stories through multiple perspectives rather than the accepted information we learn in school.

Please provide one interesting fact about yourself. I am a sneakerhead.

Any other personal information you’d like to share (family, music, favorite food, hobbies, etc.)?
My main hobbies are listening to music, browsing the internet, and working out. My favorite food is Rice-a-Roni!

April 2010

Judie Huang

Judie HuangTitle/Position/Department at Marist College: Human Resources Generalist

Time at Marist College: 2.5 Years

College/University attended: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Degree(s)/Field of Study: Ed.M. Human Resources Development; B.S., Business Administration

Professional and Cultural Organizations/Affiliations:

- Member, Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM)

- Member, American Society for Training and Development (ASTD)

- Member, College and University Professional Association for Human Resources (CUPA-HR)

Hometown/Birthplace: Taipei, Taiwan

Ethnic/Cultural Identity: Asian

What does the word “diversity” mean to you?

For me, diversity is beyond the differences of ethnicity, gender, age, religion, national origin. It is an infinite range of individuals’ unique characteristics and experiences, such as communication styles, career, cultures, life experience, educational backgrounds and other variables. Below is my favorite quote that I want to share with you.

"Diversity is not about how we differ. Diversity is about embracing one another's uniqueness." Ola Joseph

How do you contribute to diversity at Marist College?

My contribution to diversity at Marist College is to be open and willing to share my ideas, thoughts, culture, and knowledge with people I interact on a daily basis. I strongly believe that promoting diversity will help us gain unique opportunities to broaden our understanding and respect for others, providing us with potential for personal and professional growth as well as a sense of fulfillment.

Please provide one interesting fact about yourself.

I used to work in a travel agency while I was in Taiwan. The company offered me many travel opportunities, which I seized as avenues to explore new cultures. As a result, I learned the importance of having a positive and open-minded attitude. I also came to realize the importance of being fluent in other languages. I love traveling and has been to 11 countries so far including Thailand, Hong Kong, Japan, China, Canada, Demark, Finland, Iceland, Norway…etc.

Any other personal information you’d like to share (family, music, favorite food, hobbies, etc.)

I am a middle child and have 2 siblings. My brother and sister currently live in Chicago, IL. My parents still live in Taiwan. Besides traveling, I love to cook, watch movies, and hiking.

Andy DiazAndy Diaz

Major: Business, Minor: Marketing

Professional and Cultural Organizations/Affiliations:
I work on campus in the college activities department. I am also actively participating in BSU, and the Emerging Leaders program.

Hometown/Birthplace: Harlem, NY

Ethnic/Cultural Identity: Cuban and Puerto Rican

What does the word “diversity” mean to you?
True diversity goes beyond skin color. Personally I believe diversity is an environment where a broad spectrum of different philosophical and demographic differences can coexist and merge in harmony.

How do you contribute to diversity at Marist College?
I contribute to diversity at Marist by simply being proud of my heritage while enjoying other’s culture at the same time.

Please provide one interesting fact about yourself.
 I enjoy writing poetry.

Any other personal information you’d like to share (family, music, favorite food, hobbies, etc.)? More of a dedication - I would like to thank Eddie Summers and Corrine Schell for recognizing my academic prowess and pushing me to the next level by presenting Marist as an opportunity for a better future. I am also thankful for Nadine Lewis and the center for multicultural affairs for giving me a solid foundation and a family on campus. I love you all.

March 2010

Robin Diller Torres
Robin

Title/Position/Department at Marist College: Director of First Year Programs and Leadership Development/Adjunct Lecturer in Psychology/Student Affairs/School of Social and Behavioral Sciences

Time at Marist College: September 1992, 17 Years.

College/University attended: Marist College; State University of New York College at Purchase

Degree(s)/Field of Study: Master of Arts Psychology, 1992 – 1995; Bachelor of Arts Literature, 1983 – 1987

Professional and Cultural Organizations/Affiliations:

- National Society of Leadership and Success, since 2008

- ACPA, American College Student Personnel Association, since 2003

- NASPA, National Association of Student Personnel Administrators, since 2003

- NYSCA, New York State Counselors Association, since 2002

- NBCC, National Board for Certified Counselors, since 1999

- Jewish Congregation of New Paltz,Congregant; Leader, Junior Congregation; “Baalit Kriah” (Torah Follower), Bnai Mitzvah and Holiday Services

Hometown/Birthplace: East Village, New York City

Ethnic/Cultural Identity: Polish/Jewish

What does the word “diversity” mean to you? Diversity is the acknowledgement of a range and variety of approaches and perspectives in our everyday purposes of life.

How do you contribute to diversity at Marist College? I’m a 6 foot tall, “large and in charge,” middle aged, Jewish Girl with a Hispanic surname from the Lower East Side. This alone earns me “the lock” on a few diversity check-boxes. Since my arrival on campus, more and more people integrate words like Bubaleh, Mamaleh, Oy Vey and Tchatchke into a sentence with perfect conjugation, but on a more serious note, the Marist Community has always been so welcoming and embracing with regard to my cultural background. I am a Co-Advisor for the newly formed Marist Hillel, I am part of an Interfaith Committee led by Father LaMorte, and I had the honor of conducted the first Jewish Funeral Service in the Chapel for a Marist Colleague.

Do you have any diversity-related reading materials (books, articles, magazines, etc) that you would recommend to others? “Ethnicity & Family Therapy” by Monica McGoldrick. Dr. Canale recommended this text when I was a student in his class more than a decade ago. It is so important to recognize the role culture plays in shaping our outlook and approach, and I turned to that text when I feel a little stumped.

Please provide one interesting fact about yourself. I was one of the first 500 Mental Health Counselors to receive licensure in New York State.

Any other personal information you’d like to share (family, music, favorite food, hobbies, etc.)? I married my High School Sweetheart and we have three children, 10 year old twins and a College Freshman. I read Hebrew as well as I read English and am therefore able to follow Torah for my synagogue. This is a rare honor for a woman, and something that brings me great joy.

Violet O. MensahViolet

Major: Master’s Program in Public Administration/Concentration: Human Services- Marist Alumna, 1990

Professional and Cultural Organizations/Affiliations: Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc., Iota Pi Zeta Chapter President, International Poets Society, Past Chair, Diversity Management, Mid Orange Correctional Facility, National Association of Teachers of English, Professional Employees Federation, American Association of University Women, American Correctional Association, Corrections and Youth Services Association. Recognized by Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc. on state and regional levels and by the New York State English Council as an “Educator of Excellence”.

Hometown/Birthplace: Richmond, VA

Ethnic/Cultural Identity: African/Native American

What does the word “diversity” mean to you? Diversity means a blending of people based on their cultural, ethnic, spiritual and moral fiber; being different for what is not apparent rather than for what is apparent.

How do you contribute to diversity at Marist College? I contribute to the diversity at Marist in that I contribute to the African/Native American female percentage of Marist alumnae residing in the Mid Hudson Valley area. I am an accomplished public speaker and motivational individual.

Do you have any diversity-related reading materials (books, articles, magazines, etc) that you would recommend to others? I would recommend reading plays such as “A Raisin in the Sun”, “Fences”, or “The Piano”, or any play by the late August Wison; and classic books such as “Black Like Me” and “Roots”. While these books may focus on a particular ethnicity, there is a deeper message in the book or play that we all can relate to.

Please provide one interesting fact about yourself. I am a motivational teacher who can teach diverse subjects to diverse student groups. I am creative and innovative.

Any other personal information you’d like to share (family, music, favorite food, hobbies, etc.)? Documented research of my family tree revealed that my family is itself a diverse cultural mixture of West African, Native American, Jewish, Russian and German backgrounds. I am the seventh generation related to Charles Braxton, one of the Virginia signers of the Declaration of Independence.

I enjoy a diverse litany of music – soul, gospel and rhythm and blues. My hobbies are reading and writing poetry – many of my poems have been published in anthologies. One such anthology, Songs of Honour” features my poem, “Worlds Apart” as the lead poem


February 2010

Patricia Harris-Jackson

Trish Harris Jackson

Title: Assistant Director of Admission/Graduate & Adult Enrollment

Time at Marist College: 2 years

College/University attended: Savannah State University- Undergraduate; Argosy University-Graduate

Degree(s)/Field of Study: Sociology & Psychology-Undergraduate; Mental Health Counseling-Graduate

Professional and Cultural Organizations/Affiliations: Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc.; Sister’s Striving for Excellence, New York Urban League Young Professionals, Savannah State University Alumni Association, NOBLE, Member of the Marist Diversity Webpage Committee.

Hometown/Birthplace: Gay, GA

Ethnic/Cultural Identity: African-American

What does the word “diversity” mean to you? The concept of diversity encompasses acceptance, inclusion and respect. It is about understanding each other and moving beyond simple tolerance to embracing and celebrating the cultural uniqueness of individuals, groups, communities, and societies.

How do you contribute to diversity at Marist College? I was raised on a farm and was the first in my immediate family to attend college. I’m always true to myself and never compromise my morals or values for others. I’m very fluid in my thinking and open to new ideas and perspectives. I have mutual respect for qualities and experiences that are different from my own and seek to learn about others. I’m constantly advocating to ways to help enhance diversity here on the on campus, by proposing innovative methods to recruiting minority students.

Provide one interesting fact about yourself. I don’t like bread! I am a small town, Southern girl with a weakness for city life and stilettos. I have over 100 pairs of shoes.

Any other personal information you’d like to share (family, music, favorite food, hobbies, etc.)? I spend a considerable amount of time volunteering and giving back to the local community by implementing, coordinating and participating in local blood drives, breast cancer walks, literacy programs, soup kitchens, mediations and much more. I love helping others.

January 2010

Jerusa Ali

Jerusa Ali

Photo: Dinner and discussion with my students at Zorona Restaurant, Poughkeepsie (Jordanian, Lebanese and Egyptian Food). This photo represents the type of activities I enjoy with my students.

Title/Position/Department at Marist College:

Visiting Assistant Professor, Political Science Department

Time at Marist College: 1.5 years

College/University attended:

Georgetown University, Keele University, University of Nottingham

Degree(s)/Field of Study: BSc Foreign Service (Asia & Africa Regional Specialization); MA International Relations (Diplomatic Law Specialization); LLM International Law (Human Rights Specialization)

Professional and Cultural Organizations/Affiliations:

Association for Women's Rights in Development; Canadian Political Science Association; Board Member, Building Community Bridges (Togo, West Africa)

Hometown/Birthplace: Toronto, Canada

Ethnic/Cultural Identity: Caribbean decent (African, Asian and Caucasian)

What does the word “diversity” mean to you?

For me, diversity is less about a diverse mix of ethnicities and cultures so much as it is about diversity of ideas and perspectives. That being said, I still find it richly rewarding interacting with persons with different ethnicities, nationalities, languages, socio-economic backgrounds and religions. According to some of my students, even though I look different than many of their other professors, as they sit in class with me that difference melts away. I am proud of that.

How do you contribute to diversity at Marist College?

I try my best to promote diversity of ideas and perspectives in the classroom.

Do you have any diversity-related reading materials (books, articles, magazines, etc) that you would recommend to others?

Rather than give a bibliography of post-colonial theory (I can already hear the yawns), I would recommend reading something from the author V.S. Naipaul. Naipaul, who was born in Trinidad, West Indies, in 1932 of Hindu- Indian background, spent many years travelling throughout Asia, Africa and the Caribbean during decolonization. He has written several novels and works of non-fiction that trace the lives of persons from different cultural, racial and religious background during and after this time period. His writing style is quite accessible to scholars, students and romantics alike.

Provide one interesting fact about yourself.

I have never lived in the same place for more than five years.

Any other personal information you’d like to share (family, music, favorite food, hobbies, etc.)?

The last album that I downloaded was by Youssou N'Dour. He is a Senegalese artist who sings in French, English, Arabic and Wolof.

Ramzi BoutrosRamzi Boutros

Hometown: Kingston, NY

Classification: Undergraduate Student

Major: Psychology, Minor: Criminal Justice

Clubs / Activities at Marist:

Black Student Union: Member since fall 2006

Appreciating Races Creating Opportunities: Member since Fall ‘06

How did you choose Marist?

I found out about Marist thru the program I was involved in at Kingston High School, the Liberty Partnership Program (LPP). Liberty would take some of the upper class to visit different colleges and Marist was one of them. If it wasn’t for Liberty I would not have known about this college. With all the other colleges we visited, Marist to me was the best one that I have visited.

What do you like the best about Marist?

I love the friendly atmosphere at Marist. It’s like a community within a community. I like the fact that there is always a helpful hand that is willing to teach you. For example, HEOP, the writing center, Career Service, etc.

What is/was your favorite class?

My favorite class was Juvenile Justice. After graduation I would like to work with teenagers who are at risk. This class gave me a taste of what kind of teenagers I would be dealing with. My main goal is to work with delinquent teenagers and try to lead them onto the right road. This class has given me a good insight of what teenagers nowadays can and might go thru and in what ways you can help them.

Where did you study abroad or intern?

With my major I am required to do two internships. The first internship I completed was during my spring semester of my junior year at the Rape Crisis Crime Victims Dept. I went through intense training and shadowing other advocates. I was taken along to hospital visits, attended court hearings, and visited the police station just in case someone needed an advocate with them while they are filing a restraining order against someone. The internship taught me to appreciate life to the fullest. I had the unique opportunity of speaking directly to crime victims. In the beginning, I was so scared to answer the Rape Crisis Hotline, which was one of my requirements, but once I became comfortable I would jump to be the first person to answer when the hotline phone rang. The feeling of helping someone is unbelievable. Even though it can be very sad, it is necessary to let your clients know that someone is out there to help them makes them feel better. I did so well that they offered me a paid position, which I obtained this semester.

The internship that I am currently in is at the Dutchess Youth CareerWorks. I help teenagers who are underprivileged, high school drop-outs, unemployed, and possibly offenders obtain their GED, help them find jobs, and provide them with a case worker who can help them with their everyday issues. This internship I believe gave me a good insight of what I would like to do after I graduate.

What is Marist like on the weekends/what do you do for fun?

Marist on weekends is really not that exciting. Nothing really goes on on campus during the weekends so usually during this time I hang out with my friends in their townhouses. Sometimes, we go out off campus and we just make the best out of it. My friends and I also hang out with students from other schools in the area, such as SUNY New Paltz.

December 2009 - Winter Break 

November 2009

Steve Sansola        Steve Sansola

Title/Position/Department at Marist College: Associate Dean for Student Affairs,
Division of Student Affairs

Time at Marist College: 25 years

College/University attended: SUNY Cortland, Bachelor of Science Degree
SUNY New Paltz, Master of Professional Studies

Degree(s)/Field of Study: Bachelor's - Recreation Education, Master's - Education

Professional and Cultural Organizations/Affiliations:

Gillespie Forum, Chair (community organization sponsoring lectures and films on important community issues)
Morton Memorial Library and Community House, Vice President of the Board
National Association College and University Food Service, member
Marist College Campus Sustainability Advisory Committee - Co-chair

Hometown/Birthplace: Staten Island, New York City

Ethnic/Cultural Identity: American, Sephardic Jew

What does the word “diversity” mean to you?
Diversity to me means learning about or engaging in an activity that is different or completely new to me. It can be as simple as having a conversation with someone offering a different point of view or as exotic as travelling to another country with a different culture.

How do you contribute to diversity at Marist College?
The way in which I contribute to promoting diversity at Marist is by enabling and supporting students and professional colleagues, through my various contacts and resources, to further develop their ideas and activities that promote diversity for the Marist College community.

Do you have any diversity-related reading materials (books, articles, magazines, etc) that you would recommend to others?
One of the books I recently read and recommend is Among The Righteous, Lost Stories from The Holocaust's Long Reach Into Arab Lands, by Robert Satloff. The book describes everyday life between Jewish communities and their Muslim hosts and how all of that changed during The Holocaust.

Provide one interesting fact about yourself.
In 2006 I travelled to Peru, South America to hike through the Andes Mountains culminating with a visit to Machu Picchu.

Any other personal information you’d like to share (family, music, favorite food, hobbies, etc.)?
In the last 4 years I have become an avid marathon and long distance trail runner. I enjoy many outdoors activities such as hiking, cycling and kayaking and preparing the occasional gourmet meal!

Denise Roe

Denise Roe

Major: Masters in Public Administration

Classification: Marist graduate student and work as a Deputy Madison County Clerk

Professional and Cultural Organizations/Affiliations:

Appointed to the Region 6 Advisory Committee for NYS Archives; New York State Society of Opticians; Former Madison County Historical Society Board Member, NY Ag Leadership Enhancement alumnae; Executive Board Member of the Revolutionary Trails Boy Scout Council & Troop 120 Board Member; Partnership for Community Development and PCD Small Business Development Board Member; Southern Madison County Chamber of Commerce Board Member; Chairman of the NY All-States Optometric Assistants, and multiple church and athletic organizational roles

Hometown/Birthplace: Presently resides in Hamilton, NY

Ethnic/Cultural Identity: Human

What does the word “diversity” mean to you?
I visualize diversity like a valuable, precious tapestry made up of various threads of different colors, genders, sizes, individualistic shapes and abilities that are cooperative and caring and blend together to produce precious beauty, strength and wisdom, allowing flexibility and power that flows like a magic carpet and moves the universe along in a positive direction.

How do you contribute to diversity at Marist College?
I hope I set an example of respect for everyone and support their right to have differing ideas and perceptions; strive to understand them and not to be judgmental. In addition, I hope I set an example that an educational endeavor is valued at any season in life, and those of all ages have much to teach each other.

Do you have any diversity-related reading materials (books, articles, magazines, etc) that you would recommend to others?
Eckhart Tolle instructs that we are all related, we are all one. To survive as a human race, we must understand this and remember this in our actions. Whatever we do affects others.

Provide one interesting fact about yourself.
I am an idealist, but where would the world be without us?

October 2009

Jennifer HernanJennifer Hernandezdez

Classification: Senior, Class of 2010

Major: Communication (concentration: Public Relations)

Minors: Criminal Justice & Social Work

Professional and Cultural Organizations/Affiliations: Lambda Pi Eta

Hometown/Birthplace: Bronx, New York

Ethnic/Cultural Identity: Hispanic/Puerto Rican

What does the word “diversity” mean to you?
Blending different ideologies, cultures, and customs to better yourself and the community of which you are a part of. It is about collaborating different ideas and the people that come up with them to create a more complete community.

How do you contribute to diversity at Marist College?
I am a very active student on campus. I have participated in ARCO, BSU, and the Communication Arts Society since freshman year. As a member of the Communication Arts Society, and the only “minority” on the e-board since my freshman year, I made sure to acknowledge ARCO, BSU, and other ethnic-defined organizations amongst my peers. I also made sure to represent the Dominican Republic on Unity Day and made tostones (fried green plantains) for participants. I am not even Dominican, but it was important to show the campus there more than Spain and Costa Rica exist. Currently, I am president of the club, and I am encouraging more males and students of color to join.

Probably my greatest, and simplest, contribution to Marist College diversity is the way I do not limit myself. I have participated in SGA; I attend networking events; I am what I like to call “a part-time Ambassador for the Admissions Office;” and I have friends of various ethnicities. I enjoy talking about my culture and learning those of others. Just recently, I taught one of my housemates about Puerto Rican dishes and the Boricua jargon.

Do you have any diversity-related reading materials (books, articles, magazines, etc) that you would recommend to others?
I would definitely recommend people attend lectures available to us on campus. I learned so much by sitting in the lecture led by Dr. Mark Naison. He came to speak about the birth of hip-hop and the way things really were in the Bronx from the 1930s to the present. I was born and raised in the Bronx and didn’t even know half the things he taught us. He was also accompanied by Alan Jones, author of The Rat That Got Away: A Bronx Memoir. I am interested in reading the book, and based on the lecture, I recommend it already. It’s a great way to understand people from my hometown and break down stereotypes that Bronx people, and anyone else from the “ghettos”, are destined to fail.

Please provide one interesting fact about yourself.
Whenever I am asked this question, I give the same answer: I once had a crocodile as a pet. Bizarre, but interesting and true. Between the ages of 7 and 12, I lived across the street from the Bronx Zoo in a basement apartment. It became routine for my mother to shelter the animals we found in our yard. Once, in a black garbage bag, we discovered a litter of puppies. We also found numerous turtles over time, and one day ended up with a crocodile. She raised the scary creature until it reached three feet in length. We then called the zoo to pick it up. The Bronx Zoo was used to our calls at this point because my mom would nurse the animals until they were retrieved. No humans or other pets were harmed in the duration of the crocodile’s stay!

Any other personal information you’d like to share (family, music, favorite food, hobbies, etc.)?
I have one younger sister and a cousin who I strongly mentor, and I am always willing to help my peers with academic and professional advice. I also love love love soul food, pasta, and Spanish food.

Jamar CummingsJamar Cummings

Classification: Freshman Student

Major: Business Administration, concentration in Finance

Hometown/Birthplace: Poughkeepsie, New York

Ethnic/Cultural Identity: African American

What does the word "diversity" mean to you?
To me the word “diversity” means going somewhere and having the ability to see people of different cultures, races, creeds and sexual orientation. When I think of the word diversity I think of America: the worlds “melting pot.”

How do you contribute to diversity at Marist College?
Although the most obvious answer would be that because I am African-American I contribute to diversity at Marist; but I believe that it goes deeper than that. The way I think and the things I do is mostly likely different from many others and that is how I think I would contribute to diversity at Marist.

Do you have any diversity-related reading materials (books, articles, magazines, etc) that you would recommend to others?
“I Know Why the Caged Bird Sing” by Maya Angelou; “In Search of our Roots” by Henry Louis Gates; “Racial Matters” by Cornell West; “Stand” a documentary by Tavis Smiley; “African American Lives 1&2” by Henry Louis Gates; Jet, Essence and Ebony magazine; “Letter from Birmingham Jail” by Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Please provide an interesting fact about yourself.
I love and draw much of my strength the history behind the African-American cause and struggle in America. When I learn about it, it gives me strength and provides me with a deeper appreciation for the opportunities I have today.

September 2009

Yan Shi

Yan ShiPosition at Marist College:
Assistant Director, Institutional Research and Planning

Length of Service: 1 month

University attended/Degree: Peking University, Beijing, China
Teachers College, Columbia University, NY

 

Degree(s)/Field of Study:
B.A., International Economics and Trade
M.A., Economics and Education
Ph.D. Candidate, Economics and Education

Professional and Cultural Organizations/Affiliations:
Comparative and International Education Society,
Overseas Chinese Association of Institutional Research

Hometown/Birthplace: Hebei Province, P. R. China

Ethnic/Cultural Identity: Asian

What does the word "diversity" mean to you?
To me, diversity means that people live and work respectfully together and benefit from one another's wisdom and experiences. Each individual is unique; we should be willing to be open-minded and appreciate different cultural beliefs and values.

How do you contribute to diversity at Marist College?
There are very few Chinese folks at Marist College and I am one of them. I believe my ethnic and cultural background makes me unique in our Marist community and adds to the diversity of Marist College. I am willing to learn from others and always open to share my ideas and thoughts. In addition, as China's influence on the world economy continues to grow and it is playing a more important role, China becomes more open to the world than ever. For people who would like to discover China--its culture and its language, or would like to travel to China, I am more than happy to offer some help.

Please provide one interesting fact about yourself.
When translated into English, my name means "Stone & Rock". Many friends often think I have a really "hard" male name.

Any other personal information you'd like to share (family, music, favorite food, hobbies, etc.)?
My husband and I currently live in Wappingers Falls, NY. We have a lovely, happy one-year-old son Alex. I love to try all kinds of food from different countries, but my favorite is still Chinese food (luckily we can find some authentic Chinese food in NYC). I like photography, traveling, dancing, and playing table tennis.

Tiana “Tia” Steward Tia Steward

Classification: Alumni May 2009

Major: Communications/ Journalism Minor: Studio Art

Hometown/Birthplace: Queens, New York

Ethnic/Cultural Identity: African American/ Hispanic- Puerto Rican

What does the word “diversity” mean to you?
A group of unique people coming together to learn about everything that is different from what they have seen growing up

How do you contribute to diversity at Marist College?
I went to many of the diverse events at Marist, I made myself known and I got to know people I normally would not get to see back home, I was a part of ARCO (Appreciating Races Creating Opportunities) and BSU (The Black Student Union), where I served as the treasure for 2 years, in both of these clubs we tried to advertise them as not being “just a minority” will get you in, but a person who has views and wants to learn. I also studied abroad in London for a semester, and I promote going abroad strongly, because it is an opportunity that many City students do not get to see often.

Do you have any diversity-related reading materials (books, articles, magazines, etc) that you would recommend to others?
Two books, the first being Bill Cosby’s “Come on People”, I am recommending this book, not because I like, but because of what it states. Bill Cosby in the book claims that “we”, the black communities need to get our act together. The book to me seems to be based more so on the myths about what goes on in black communities, and I feel everyone should read the book, just to see how wrong he is and what it is we can possibly do to change our communities.

The second book is Sista Souljah’s prequel book Midnight. I am recommending this book because it shows diversity, because it is the story of a young man, born into wealth in the Sudan. Just a boy, he had to leave his father and his wealth behind and flee his country with his pregnant mother and make a life on the mean streets of New York. He has to navigate though violence, drugs and sex while maintaining his dignity and devotion to his family, his religion and to himself. It shows how one man has be raised to cherish the women in his life and it also shows how a man can fall in love with someone outside of his race, in this case a Japanese woman who is an artist and speaks five different languages.

Please provide one interesting fact about yourself.
I like to read and have quite the collection of books, and I one day want to publish a book or two.

Any other personal information you’d like to share (family, music, favorite food, hobbies, etc.)?
I am the oldest daughter of 4, in the age range of me being 22 with my younger sister at 11. I also have a two year old nephew and a 7 month old niece.

Music to me is my therapy; it helps to get me ready, before an interview or exam, and helps to calm my nerves. My music collection is very diverse, from Sugarland (Country duo group) to Aventura (a Bachata music group) to anything R&B and Hip-Hop and some Rap.

My hobbies would be reading books and cooking. Books help to expand my vocabulary and my view on the world and cooking food helps to expand my taste buds, and allows me to experiment with different recipes. I really no longer have a favorite food; I like every type of food, from Spanish cooking to Thai cooking, it all is wonderful and uses different spices from each culture and not only gives me a new view on the culture, but it also opens and helps to expand my taste buds.

July/August 2009

Amber Hinds

Amber Hinds

Position at Marist College:
Assistant Director of Admission, Graduate & Adult Enrollment

Length of Service: 18 months


University attended/Degree:
Austin College, Sherman, TX

Degree(s)/Field of Study: B.A. Philosophy


Professional and Cultural Organizations/Affiliations:
• Graduate Fairs Coordinator for New York Graduate Admissions Professionals (NYGAP)
• Member of National Association of Graduate Admission Professionals (NAGAP)
• Member of P.E.O. International, a philanthropic organization which promotes educational opportunities for women

Hometown/Birthplace: Cedar Rapids, IA

Ethnic/Cultural Identity: German (first generation American on father's side)

What does the word "diversity" mean to you?
To me, diversity is tied into the traditions and core beliefs that make up a person's personality and identity, more than just his or her appearance.

How do you contribute to diversity at Marist College?
Many of my core values make me unique in the context of our campus community, especially among my age group. I have a strong commitment to simple living: eating local and vegetarian, not having a television, not utilizing many of the available vaccines, as well as gardening and canning/freezing produce for the winter. As someone who works in the admission office, I have a particular interest in aiding and encouraging our international student population, which helps to build a more diverse community of students.

Provide one interesting fact about yourself.
My husband and I hope to someday own a bed and breakfast which will appeal to agritourists and include a CSA (community supported agriculture - farming that is supported by a community of members who have a share in the risk and the bounty of the harvest), chickens, and dairy cows.

Any other personal information you'd like to share (family, music, favorite food, hobbies, etc.)?
I am the oldest of seven children and the only girl. My family lives in Iowa, where I grew up, and Texas. My husband and I moved to the Hudson Valley in 2007 so he could attend the Culinary Institute of America, and we love it here! We have a dog, Pip, and are expecting our first child at the end of August.

Elyse BrendlenElyse Brendlen

Major: English with a Jewish Studies minor


Hometown/Birthplace: Westwood, NJ

Ethnic/Cultural Identity: White


What does the word "diversity" mean to you?
Diversity is the representation of different cultures, ethnicities, religions and beliefs in a group of people.

How do you contribute to diversity at Marist College?
There are very few atheists on campus and I am one of them. I try to educate other students about atheism and what it means to be an atheist; I try to break pre-conceived notions about atheists and gain acceptance by what is largely a religious student population.

Do you have any diversity-related reading materials (books, articles, magazines, etc) that you would recommend to others?
Bread Givers by Anzia Yezierska: A really great book about Jewish life in New York City in the early 1900's.
Random Family by Adrian Nicole LeBlanc: An interesting true story following the lives of several young people struggling to get by in the Bronx.

Please provide an interesting fact about yourself.
I'm really interested in the Holocaust. I find it extremely sad that Holocaust survivors are getting older and that soon there won't be any left, and I'd really love to interview as many survivors as I possibly can and put all of the interviews into a book so that their amazing stories will never be forgotten.

 

June 2009

Eitel J.M. Lauría

Faculty profilePosition at Marist College:
I'm an Associate Professor of Information Systems, for the School of Computer Science and Mathematics. I'm also the Director of the Master of Science in Information Systems, co-Director of the Master of Science in Technology Management (a joint venture with the School of Management), and a Director of Company Projects at the Center for Collaborative and On-demand Computing (CCODC).

Length of Service: 7 years

University attended/Degree:
I have a 6-year Engineering degree from University of Buenos Aires. I hold a joint MBA from Universidad del Salvador (Argentina) and Universidad de Deusto (Spain). And I received a PhD in Information Science from University at Albany, SUNY. I'm an engineer at heart.

Professional and Cultural Organizations/Affiliations:
I'm a member of the Association of Information Systems, a member of the Editorial Board of the Int Journal of Services Sciences, and a committee member at a number of conferences and academic institutions: ICSOFT, ICIQ, Universidad del Salvador (Buenos Aires), ITBA (Buenos Aires).

Hometown/Birthplace: I was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina, and was raised in Lomas de Zamora, a suburb twelve miles south of Buenos Aires. Twelve miles don't seem much, but for those who know Buenos Aires, it's a BIG difference.

Ethnic/Cultural Identity: I'm a typical "porteño", the name given to those born in Buenos Aires and its surroundings. My roots are Italian, like more than half of the population in Argentina, a land of immigrants. And for a number of reasons, I have ties to the British community in Buenos Aires.

What does the word "diversity" mean to you?
I never thought much about diversity until we came to live in the US with our family, although I've always been interested in geography and travelling. Argentina is, for historical reasons, quite homogeneous in terms of race, culture and religion. When we got here we discovered that we were part of the patchwork of diversity that is the United States.

How do you contribute to diversity at Marist College?
Well, I try to promote South American soccer, in particular Argentinian soccer, as the best in the world. Please note that we call it football, not soccer. Seriously speaking, I am the director of a graduate program (MSIS) where 50% of its student population come from India. Also, many of the projects in which I've been involved at CCDOC have included students and peers of diverse background. And in the MSTM program, I teach a course on Global Issues in Tech Mgmt, where we take our students to visit other countries.

Provide one interesting fact about yourself.
I‘ve always been very goal oriented, which means that for a long time I was mostly concerned with results, sometimes disregarding the journey. As age piles up on me, I've discovered that life is not only about the final score, that you have to enjoy the game. As the Spanish poet said, "caminante no hay camino, se hace camino al andar."

Any other personal information you'd like to share (family, music, favorite food, hobbies, etc.)?
Family: I live in Delmar, NY, seven miles south of Albany, with my wife Corinne, our daughters Florencia and Maia, and our Siamese cat, Lara.
Florencia is an English major at Marist College, in her junior year.
I am a squash player, a former rugby player, and I have a passion for soccer and SCUBA diving.
Food: Un buen asado.
Music: James Taylor and Joan Manuel Serrat.

Pamela Gomez

Major: Communications/Public Relations
Minor in Creative WritingStudent Profile

Professional and Cultural Organizations/Affiliations: Undergraduate of Admissions, Literary Arts Society, Lesbian Gay Straight Alliance

Hometown/Birthplace: Bronx, NY

Ethnic/Cultural Identity: Dominican

What does the word "diversity" mean to you?
Diversity is a representation of various ethnicities/cultures/religions etc. in any given organization

How do you contribute to diversity at Marist College?
My contribution to diversity is through my ethnic background and my culture. I've brought up some Spanish food from home and had some of my friends try it and they really liked it.

Please provide an interesting fact about yourself.
I'm an only child. I love to listen (and sort of dance) to bachata and merengue but my styling is pretty eclectic so I'll pretty much listen to anything. And I absolutely love to write.

May 2009

Van Riley

Staff Profile

Title/Position/Department at Marist College:
Assistant Director of Admission for Graduate and Adult Enrollment

Time at Marist College: 4 years

College/University attended: Marist

Degree(s)/Field of Study: Bachelor of Science in Integrative Studies with concentrations of Organizational Administration and Psychology

Professional and Cultural Organizations/Affiliations: Member of the Dutchess County Advocacy Respect Community (ARC)

Hometown/Birthplace: Harlem, New York City

Ethnic/Cultural Identity: African American

What does the word "diversity" mean to you?
Diversity means dynamic, open minded, and creative. It also represents the future and is where success can be found. It is also sharing of different ideas, experiences, and cultures.

How do you contribute to diversity at Marist College?
I am willing to share my ideas, thoughts, and knowledge from a unique perspective. I have learned and will continue to learn from any where I can. I am in a unique position to represent the minority on the Marist campus. I also see this position as a great opportunity to be not only a face, but a voice for the African American community. I am in the position to affect change and encourage individuals from all walks of life to strive to achieve their goals. The community that they strive to be a part of is just a stage to showcase your many talents and inspirational qualities.

Provide one interesting fact about yourself.
I surprise myself every time I push past my limits and see that I can do anything I set my mind to. Just like anyone else can.

Any other personal information you'd like to share (family, music, favorite food, hobbies, etc.)?
I love to play chess, basketball, and lift weights. My favorite food is turkey lasagna.

Viviane S. Lopuch

Faculty ProfileTitle/Position/Department at Marist College:
Lecturer, School of Global and Professional Programs

Time at Marist College:
Since September 2005 in various roles, admin, adjunct instructor and now, full-time lecturer

College/University attended: Dutchess Community College (AA), Marist College (BS), University of Phoenix (MA), and Marist College (MA)

Degree(s)/Field of Study: AA Liberal Arts, B.S. Integrative Studies, MA Organizational Management, MA Organizational Communication & Leadership

Professional and Cultural Organizations/Affiliations: Member of the following:
American Association for Adult and Continuing Education (AAACE)
American Association of University Women (AAUW)
New York State Communication Association (NYSCA)
Society for Disability Studies (SDS)

Hometown/Birthplace: Philadelphia, PA

Ethnic/Cultural Identity: Kalmyk Mongolian

What does the word "diversity" mean to you?
For me, diversity means the unique qualities, characteristics, experiences and abilities of every individual.

How do you contribute to diversity at Marist College?
I contribute to diversity at Marist College by encouraging awareness and respect for individual differences in my daily interactions with students, colleagues and through my teaching and research.

Do you have any diversity-related reading materials (books, articles, magazines, etc) that you would recommend to others?
Yes, DiversityInc magazine, a publication with articles about diversity and business, and Ability magazine, which focuses on health and disability issues. Both magazines address issues related to diversity and differences that I find interesting and educational. They each offer a free digital subscription to anyone with an .edu e-mail address. Just visit their respective web sites.

Provide one interesting fact about yourself.
I am number seven of seven children and the only one born in the United States (in Philadelphia, on the 4th of July, but I won't tell you what year!).

Any other personal information you'd like to share (family, music, favorite food, hobbies, etc.)?
My father was born in (what is now known as) Kalmykia, an autonomous republic of the Russian Federation where nomadic Mongolian Buddhists traveled to and settled in the mid 1600's. My mother was born in Bulgaria, and my six siblings were born in either Germany or France. The Kalmyk language (which I, and my siblings do speak) is today, considered a dying one. This is largely due to the fact that for many years, the largest Kalmyk population (in Russia) had been prohibited from speaking Kalmyk. Today, most Kalmyks in Russia speak Russian and the few in America, speak primarily English. There is no Kalmyk alphabet. The Cyrillic alphabet is used for writing in Kalmyk.

In addition to being interested in diversity, I maintain a (somewhat) diverse household. My husband is Ukrainian, and my cats are Siamese and Burmese.

April 2009

Reba-Anna Lee

Reba Anna

Position at Marist College:
Assistant Director of Academic
Technology and e-Learning


Length of Service: 1 year


College/University attended:
Undergraduate and Master's-University of
California, Santa Barbara;
Doctorate, Ed. D.- Alliant University


Degree(s)/Field of Study:
English/Writing and Educational Technology

Professional and Cultural Organizations/Affiliations:
National Council of Teachers of English, California Association of Teachers of English, Women in Higher Education, Blacks in Higher Education, International Society for Technology in Education, National Council of Teachers of Mathematics.


Hometown/Birthplace: Oceanside, CA


Ethnic/Cultural Identity: African American


What does the word "diversity" mean to you?
I cannot say that I have a deep understanding of diversity. I know how books, politicians, television, and such machines want us to define diversity but I believe that true diversity is not defined. It just is. I was taught that "good people don't come in colors, they come in actions."


How do you contribute to diversity at Marist College?
I want to be a role model for young women who strive to succeed in higher education. I try to set an example through my work and in my interactions with people on campus. I believe that being a strong role model is to come through difficulty with your head held high and your integrity intact.


Provide one interesting fact about yourself.
I can imitate various cartoon characters and recite famous lines from 80's movies with realistic accuracy.


Any other personal information you'd like to share (family, music, favorite food, hobbies, etc.)?
I am the youngest of six who enjoys playing badminton and watching scary movies. My favorite movies of all time is "Singing in the Rain" and "Young Frankenstein."

Raphael A. Tawiah (TAY- we-ah)

Student ProfileClassification: Graduate Student


Major: MBA

Professional and Cultural Organizations/Affiliations:
Catholic Priest. Serve as a Parochial Vicar at Regina Coeli Church, Hyde Park


Hometown/Birthplace: Sampa, Ghana


Ethnic/Cultural Identity: African


What does the word "diversity" mean to you?
For me, ‘diversity' means variety and difference, which makes up one whole entity, causing that entity to be complex and beautiful at the same time. Diversity, I would say, is "multiformity."


How do you contribute to diversity at Marist College?
I contribute to the diversity of Marist College in many ways. First of all, as an African, the rich African cultural values and experiences would be exhibited in the College. As a Ghanaian, and having had all my education in Ghana, I have the Ghanaian learning environment as an asset. Also, my vocation as a Catholic Priest contributes to the College's diversity.


Provide one interesting fact about yourself.
One thing I find interesting about myself is that I am the youngest of all the Ghanaian Priests who come to study in the United States. Normally, a priest spends some few years (at least two or more), to gain some pastoral experiences as a priest before going for further studies. Only a year after my ordination on July 7, 2007, I was asked to come to study at Marist. I find it interesting and a big challenge for me as well. I work effectively when under pressure.


Any other personal information you'd like to share (family, music, favorite food, hobbies, etc.)?
Family - I am the oldest in a family of five children, two brothers and two sisters. One of my brothers serves in the military in Ghana, and the other who is the youngest, is yet to go to high school. My two sisters are married, one a petty trader and the other, a teacher.
Favorite sport - I am a Soccer fan, and play pretty good as well. I miss playing Soccer so much, since Football and Basketball are the favorite of most people here in America. I look forward to playing for the Marist men's soccer team.
Favorite foods - The traditional Ghanaian fufu dish, which is made by pounding ground corn (maize) in a wooden mortar and served with light peanut soup and bushbuck is my delicacy. Fufu is a starchy accompaniment for stews or other dishes with sauce. To eat fufu: use your right hand to tear off a bite-sized piece of the fufu, shape it into a ball, make an indentation in it, and use it to scoop up the soup or stew or sauce, or whatever you're eating. Since I can't get that ‘special' here, now I go for Shrimp Scampi.
Other - During my free time, I like to read and watch Adventure movies.

March 2009

Tony Carrizales, Ph.D.

faculty profile picture Position at Marist College:
Assistant Professor of Public Administration,
School of Management

Length of Service: 3 years

College/University attended:
Rutgers, PhD; Cornell BA, MPA

Degree(s)/Field of Study: Public Administration

Professional and Cultural Organizations/Affiliations:
American Society for Public Administration, Cornell Latino Alumni Association, Conference of Minority Public Administrators; La Unidad Latina, Lambda Upsilon Lambda Fraternity, and Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Public Management and Social Policy.

Hometown/Birthplace: Brownsville, TX

Ethnic/Cultural Identity: Chicano/Tejano

What does the word "diversity" mean to you?
In the context of higher education, I view diversity as a wealth of different cultures, histories and traditions, for which we can all learn from.

How do you contribute to diversity at Marist College?
A significant part of my research addresses issue of diversity in the public sector. Recent presentations and articles include topics such: "Race and Ethnicity as Determinants of Prison Privatization," and "Cultural Competency: Opportunities and Challenges for Public Sector Initiatives."

Provide one interesting fact about yourself.
I enjoy to watch/play sports. I hope to one day participate in a student/faculty softball/flag football game at Marist.

Any other personal information you'd like to share (family, music, favorite food, hobbies, etc.)?
My wife and I met freshmen year in college and live in Westchester, NY.

Babette Agan Fasolino

Classification: Student Profile
Graduate Student

Major:
Communications and Organizational Leadership

Professional and Cultural Organizations/Affiliations:
New York State Communication Association, New York State Council on the Arts Presenters, Dutchess County Arts Council, and Eastern Shawnee Tribe of Oklahoma Museum Development Committee.

Hometown/Birthplace:
Los Angeles, CA

Ethnic/Cultural Identity:
Native American - Eastern Shawnee Tribe of Oklahoma. Our tribe is relatively small, consisting of about 2,500 members, and originated in Ohio.

What does the word "diversity" mean to you?
Acknowledging and accepting that we are all unique with different lifestyles and cultures. We all have interesting stories to share.

How do you contribute to diversity at Marist College?
By sharing my story and educating others about my culture. I represent a culture, rich in tradition, which is not often represented at institutes of higher learning.

Provide one interesting fact about yourself.
Pursuing a Masters Degree has always been my personal goal. I applied to Marist at the age of 47, when my daughter was in her sophomore year of college. It's been challenging to be back in school, but I have enjoyed every minute. It is never too late to pursue your dream.

Any other personal information you'd like to share (family, music, favorite food, hobbies, etc.)?
I am working with other tribal members to develop a cultural museum at our headquarters that would preserve historical artifacts and share the heritage of the Eastern Shawnee. My mother resides near our tribal headquarters, where her cousin, Glenna Wallace, serves as the tribe's first female Chief. The Chief is also a retired college Dean and has been instrumental in encouraging members to pursue their education. In my spare time, I enjoy kayaking in the Hudson River with my husband, traveling to music venues with my son and his rock band, and attending my daughter's college theater productions.

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