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MC: Dr. Alycia Mosley Austin, Director, Graduate Recruitment and Diversity Initiatives, Graduate School  Welcome from Melvin Wade, Director, Multicultural Center  Dinner  Awards 2003: AAA § SLU

Undergraduate Student Excellence (Artistic & Cultural) Presenter: Denise Dujon, Undergraduate Student, Biological Sciences Undergraduate Student Excellence (Academic & Service) Presenter: Jarso Saygbe, Academic Advisor, Talent Development Undergraduate Student Excellence (Leadership &Service) Presenter: Roxanne Gomes, Director, Affirmative Action, Equal Opportunity & Diversity Changing the Culture Presenter: Kathryn Friedman, Interim Associate Vice President for Community, Equity and Diversity Organization Excellence (Leadership & Service) Presenter: Garrett Bozylinsky, Vice Provost, Office of Information Technology Graduate Student Excellence (Leadership & Service) Presenter: Dr. Nasser Zawia, Dean, Graduate School Staff/Administrator Excellence (Leadership & Service) Presenter: Dr. Thomas Dougan, Vice President, Student Affairs Faculty Excellence (Leadership & Service) Presenter: Dr. Donald DeHayes, Provost & Vice President of Academic Affairs Lifetime Achievement Presenter: Dr. David Dooley, President  Closing by Dr. Mailee Kue, Assistant Director, Multicultural Center, and Roxanne Gomes, Director, Affirmative Action, Equal Opportunity & Diversity, Co-Chairs, URI Diversity Awards Committee Co-Chairs 3

Kelly Oliviera Ann Sam Holly Tran

§ Shauntel Martin § Yasah Vezele § Karina Luna § Michelle Rosa § Elizabeth Lyons § § § § § § §


is being honored for her leadership in stabilizing and enhancing the identity of the Women's Studies Program at URI, and in promoting a campus environment that is welcoming, supportive and inclusive of cultural diversity. As Director and Assistant Professor in Women's Studies, Dr. Lisberger has revitalized the Program through such initiatives as the Diversity Week event, "Out of Diversity: We Speak," the popular lecture series Crossing Borders: Women Writing Their Lives, and a mentorship practice that develops the pedagogical expertise of undergraduates so as to enhance their role as discussion leaders for the Introduction to Women's Studies (WMS 150) class. An accomplished writer of fiction, her research and scholarship centers on feminist narrative theory, women writers, and postcolonial literature. In her teaching, and her approach to curriculum design and faculty recruitment, she seeks to explore and model the ways in which gender, race, socioeconomic class, and sexuality are interrelated. The intent of her practice is to aid students in transforming their understanding of their lives in a global and diverse context. She holds a B. A. degree in Anthropology from Smith (MA) College, an M.F.A. in Writing from Vermont College, and a Ph.D. in English from Boston University. She is an active member of the President's Commission on the Status of Women and the Equity Council. In 2008, she won the Lecturer Teaching Excellence Award in the College of Arts & Sciences. is being honored for her pioneering role as one of the first generation of women engineering professors on campus, and her leadership in establishing an inclusive climate for women in the College of Engineering. An Associate Professor of Chemical Engineering, Dr. Rivero Hudec has formerly served the College as Associate Dean of Students. The second woman faculty member to be employed in the College of Engineering (COE), she played an important role in helping the campus community understand the institutional barriers that undermine success for women in science. Her co-authored paper with other women faculty at URI (2001) on the evolution of curricular change on campus, posited that the “curricular changes that enhance the enrollment, education, and generation of women students require a critical mass of women faculty and a work environment in which they can thrive personally and professionally.” In helping to build the social networks to reinforce success for underrepresented groups, she has been a member of the Women’s Equity Committee, the Women in Science group, and the COE Diversity Committee; served on the leadership team of the URI NSF ADVANCE Program; and mentored students for the Science and Math Investigative Learning Experiences (SMILE) Program, and for Student Disability Services. Currently, she is Faculty Advisor of the Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers (SHPE) student chapter, and is active with the International Engineering Program (IEP). Her research focuses on transport phenomena, examining the function of microorganisms in regulating the movement and impact of molecules to, across, and within cells. She holds a B.S. degree from Simon Bolivar University in Venezuela, and M. Sc. and Ph.D. degrees from the University of Pennsylvania.

is being honored for his creation of networks for hip-hop disc jockeys in Rhode Island, and for his commitment to involving students in campus and community service. A junior majoring in Communication Studies, Jason has established as one of Rhode Island’s most popular dj’s, working primarily in the hip-hop, reggae, and house music genres. Described as a collaborator, a facilitator, and a breakbeat innovator, he hosts three weekly radio shows: Live From The Dorm Room on Sunday nights, utilizing online radio via and; 90.3 FM on Monday nights, via WRIU, the URI radio station; and, about the Cape Verdean community in the native language. His radio shows, his status as house dj at Level II, a club in Providence; and his bookings at cultural shows, concerts, fundraisers, and parties have helped Jason create artistic and social networks within and beyond Rhode Island. Working with Brothers On A New Direction (B.O.N.D.), Powerful Intelligent Notoriously Knowledgeable (P.I.N.K.) Women, and the National Society of Black Engineers (N.S.B.E.), Jason organized a shuttle system during Halloween Weekend that transported students from Brown University, the University of Massachusetts, Johnson and Wales University, and Bridgewater State University to and from URI, and exposed them to area dj’s. In addition, he is a former Student Senator, and serves B.O.N.D. as Co-Chair of Programming and Public Relations. is being honored for his contributions to the infusion of Native American culture into the campus culture, and for his commitment philosophy and practice of multiculturalism on campus. A senior majoring in Communication Studies and Film Media, he has served as both President and Treasurer of the Native American Student Organization (NASO), the student organization which most effectively represents the interests of local and regional tribes on campus. Describing the mission of NASO, Darnell has said, “Everything we do is to inform the University of our heritage and to share our culture in efforts to unite all cultures.” Through NASO, he has been a leader in revitalizing the Annual Native American Pow Wow at URI, a ceremonial gathering that celebrates the Narragansett and Pequot cultural heritage, and educates others through food, dance, drumming, stories, costume and crafts. The 2010 Pow Wow attracted 400 students, faculty, staff and community members. In addition, he has also helped to found the Annual Night of Tradition Showcase, a culture show that features performances by NASO and other multicultural organizations on campus. He has also completed an internship at the Office of the Treasury of Rhode Island, and conducted the Nikkommo Toy Drive. An accomplished dancer, he performs in the traditional regalia of deer hide leggings, breech cloth and white tailed deer headway with turkey feathers.


is being honored for his record of academic excellence, and his leadership and advocacy for a diverse, equitable campus on which students in the STEM fields (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) are adequately supported. A senior majoring in civil and environmental engineering with a 3.23 GPA, John has held a number of campus and regional offices in the National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE), the most prominent organization supporting academic excellence, professional success, and community service: President of the campus chapter; PreCollegiate Initiative Chair for the New England Zone; and Executive Board Member for the New England Zone. Through his regional offices in NSBE, he worked to plan and facilitate a conference for over 200 high school students featuring over 25 workshops and competitions. Working with his faculty adviser Dr. Vinka Craver, he is in the second stage of an undergraduate research project in Cape Verde, in which he conducted water quality tests, and will develop an online chlorination system for water tanks. John hopes that his project will help to increase ties between URI and the University of Cape Verde. Having also completed a summer internship at the Rhode Island Department of Transportation, he recently received the URI St. Clair Drake Award for Outstanding Scholarly Research. is being honored for his record of academic excellence, and his leadership and advocacy for a respectful campus in which inclusion of underrepresented voices heightens opportunities for social development and academic learning. A senior majoring in Biological Sciences and French with a 3.99 GPA, Maxwell emerged as the convener of the student organization I AM U URI – Unity in Diversity, drafting the mission statement, and helping to negotiate its relationship with the Equity Council, and actively participating in the creation of goals, rationales, and recommendations that were presented to President David Dooley and Provost Donald DeHayes. The initiatives of this group have helped the University to clarify and advance its diversity agenda. Working with his faculty adviser Dr. Navindra Seeram, his undergraduate research is focused on identifying natural products present in the leaves of the winged sumac plant, and evaluating these compounds for their therapeutic effects. Maxwell has also served as supplemental instruction leader in pre-calculus with the Academic Enhancement Center, historian for the Student Alliance for the Welfare of Africa (SAWA), and spokesperson for the Prospective Applicant Open Houses. He is a recipient of the URI Estes Benson Award for Academic Achievement. 6

is being honored for his volunteer service to campus diversity projects, and his commitment to promoting the holistic development of students. As the Program Coordinator for Rainbow Diversity House, he has helped to arrange the popular, all-campus Annual Thanksgiving Dinner; worked with the RA’s to conduct GLBT sensitivity training; and has traveled for the Alternative Spring Break with students to Birmingham, AL to interface with a diverse community. In addition, he is the Coordinator of the weekly Multicultural Center Sustained Dialogue Project, a structured, five-step dialogue process which seeks to involve students from diverse groups in developing leadership and communication skills, transforming intergroup and intragroup tensions, and identifying common ground for collaboration. Moreover, he has coordinated activities for URI Dr. Martin Luther King Week, and served on the diversity committees of Housing and Residential Life, and Student Affairs. He holds a B. A. in Social Sciences from Keene (NH) State College. is being honored for her positioning of multiculturalism within the mission of the URI Hillel Foundation, and for her leadership in influencing URI and URI Hillel adapt to the needs of the 21st century. As the Director of URI Hillel, she has remained in the traditional goals of promoting Jewish identity, culture, and learning, while reinterpreting the principles of tzedek (social justice) and tikkun olam (repairing the world). She was the essential catalyst in the fundraising and renovation of the $2.2 million, 5,000-square-foot Norman Fain Hillel Center, which opened on campus in 2009. Under her guidance, Hillel’s programs have included such diverse events as an intercultural seder (ritualized dinner), community service in New Orleans over Spring Break, travel to Israel, discussion with Ethiopian Jewish visitors, meetings by the URI Chapter of Parents and Friends of Gays and Lesbians (PFLAG), a Breast Cancer Walk, a panel discussion on the People’s Revolution in Egypt, and concerts at the Multicultural Center by musicians, such as The AfroSemitic Experience, and Loolwa Khazzoom. She is an active member of the President’s Commission on the Status of Women, the Equity Council, the Diversity Week Planning Committee, and the Student Affairs Diversity Committee. She also serves as Chair of the URI Chaplains Association. She holds a B. A. degree in Theater from Washington University in St. Louis (MO), and an M.F.A. in Directing from the University of Minnesota.

is being honored for her multiple contributions to the advancement of campus diversity at URI, and for her personal and professional commitment to research in multicultural psychology, especially in the areas of ethnic identity development, and multicultural competence training for doctoral-level students pursuing clinical and counseling doctoral degrees. Reflecting her diverse interests and intellectual energies, she has seamlessly blended multiple projects that promote diversity learning, professional development, and social justice. A doctoral student in clinical Psychology, she has been an active member of the Task Force on Multiculturalism and Diversity, addressed the needs of diverse graduate students as the communications focused member-atlarge to the American Psychological Association of Graduate Students, and completed mental health externships at the URI Counseling Center and the Rhode Island Training School. As Graduate Assistant Hall Director for Peck Hall, she is co-chair of the Department of Housing and Residential Life Diversity committee, aided in the development of the URI Bias Response Team, coordinates diversity training for resident assistants, and serves as a HRL and graduate student member of the Equity Council. In addition, she mentored the undergraduates in the convening of the 2009 URI Student Leadership Conference, and the formation of I AM U URI-Unity in Difference. Finally, she has been a Summer Counselor for the Talent Development program for the past three years; a discussion Moderator for the Honors Colloquium Film Series on Race; a member of the Faculty Senate Committee on Learning Outcomes Assessment, and a Research Assistant to Dr. Jasmine Mena, Psychology, and Dr. Donald Cunnigen, Sociology. She holds a B.A. degree in Psychology and Italian from Vassar College, and an M.A. in Psychology from URI.

is being honored for her contributions to the infusion of nonviolence education into the campus culture, and her commitment to the practice of sustained dialogue as a strategy to improve the campus climate. A junior majoring in Environmental Science and Management, she was oriented to nonviolence when her fifth -grade teacher at Wakefield Elementary School invited Dr. Bernard Lafayette, former Director of URI’s Center for Nonviolence and Peace Studies, to introduce students to the teachings of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in the spring of 2001. During the following summer, Michaela, her teacher, and other members of her class joined Dr. Lafayette on a civil rights tour to Birmingham, Montgomery, and Selma, AL. She now works part-time at the Center for Nonviolence and Peace Studies where she is a Level II nonviolence trainer and has assisted with the Center-national Summer Institute. In addition, she has helped to found the Student Nonviolence Involvement Committee, which she serves as Vice President of Programming; and the Multicultural Center Sustained Dialogue, for which she is Co-Facilitator. In addition, she is active with URI Sustainability. Programs she has helped to coordinate include a discussion with her fifth-grade teacher’s class; sustained dialogue workshops for Diversity Week and Martin Luther King Week; the International Day of Peace; and a screening of a film on the Israeli – Palestinian conflict. is being honored for his unique vision of a multicultural campus in which all students are enabled to learn and develop to their maximum potential, and for the range of determined initiatives he has led to realize this vision. A senior majoring in Communication Studies and African-American Studies, Brandford has rendered extraordinary leadership and service to URI, as a member of the Student Senate Executive Board, Chair of the Student Senate Cultural Affairs Committee, President of Classy Leaders Achieving Student Services (C.L.A.S.S.), and the principal convener of the Multicultural Unity and Student Involvement Council (M.U.S.I.C.). As Student Senator and Cultural Affairs Chair, he has improved communication between Student Senate and the multicultural organizations, helping each group to understand the other; and worked with Student Senate President David Coates to facilitate a Student Senate panel on Diversity during Diversity Week. As President of C.L.A.S.S., he has led the organization in presenting the Seven Continents Culture Show during URI Diversity Week, attracting over 300 students, and featuring 13 participating organizations; A. I. D. S. Awareness Week with the Student Alliance for the Awareness of Africa (S.A.W.A.); and “From Then to Now: Crossing the Color Lines,” an on-campus, scripted production encompassing the eras of Slavery, the Harlem Renaissance, and the Civil Rights Movement, with the support of the African-American Studies Program. As convener of M.U.S.I.C., he has conducted regular meetings of the Presidents of the multicultural and social change organizations, coordinated the Diversity Services at URI Fair, and raised funds for a college scholarship. In addition, he has worked with the Feinstein Center for Service Learning to present a workshop during URI Martin Luther King Week for students from the Urban Collaborative, a middle-school for “at-risk” students in Providence; advocated for student organization funding on the Student Affairs Diversity Fund Committee; and served as a Civic Engagement Leader for URI 101.


is being honored for their leadership in transforming the culture of the University toward inclusion, and for their education of the campus community about the corrosive effects of a frigid campus climate on student learning and development. Led by Brian Stack ’12, Riley Davis ’13, Kevin Cruz ’13, and Justin Willner ’13, the GSA engaged in meetings with President David Dooley and senior administrators in August, culminating in a sit-in in the campus library during September. The ongoing negotiations have led to greater understanding of the discrimination directed against LGBT students, and a number of corrective responses: a commitment to establish a new LGBT Center – only the second in higher education in Rhode Island (after Brown University); accelerated hiring of the new interim Chief Diversity Officer; mandatory awareness training for resident assistants; and increased funding for programming and staffing. In February, the work of the Gay-Straight Alliance was recognized through the Chaplains’ Peacemakers Award during URI Martin Luther King Week. In March, an article, “For Gay Students, More Room on Campus,” in the Chronicle of Higher Education, presented insights from seven LGBT students, sharing reflections about their experiences at URI. In his blog, President Dooley refers to this as “a good and fair article that cogently describes the difficulties that GLBT students face, the efforts to improve their safety and inclusion, and the ongoing work to assess and monitor progress at institutions in higher education, including URI.”

is being honored for its contributions towards infusing Latino culture and dance into the campus culture, and for its creation of an identity as a multicultural dance team seeking to promote diversity learning for all students. In pursuit of its mission, eXposure has employed a threefold strategy. First, the team conducts its own major events such as the Multicultural Dance Recital in Edwards and individual performances; the big Band in the Memorial Union, exposing students to dance genres including Latino, Cape Verdean, hip-hop, rock and techno, which raised over $4,700 for the Haiti Relief Fund and the cleaning of the Hardge Memorial; and the Mr. and Mrs. URI event, which collected over $2000 for Kids with Cancer. Second, it offers a series of dance classes, especially in African-based creole dances such as the bachata and the passada. Third, it supports and collaborates with events by other groups such as ALIMA’s Rhythm of the Soul in Edwards Auditorium and the Latina American Student Association (LASA) Culture Show in the Memorial Union. During October, eXposure sponsored master classes on hip-hop and on the rhythm and blues (R&B) by DraZtik, the first dance team from Rhode Island to appear on the MTV show “America’s Best Dance Crew.” is being honored for its contributions to the social, cultural and academic retention of women students at URI. In pursuit of its mission to help women students feel safe, comfortable and supported, WOWW has established a set of promising goals and strategies. To ease the transitions of first-year women to college life and throughout their college career, WOWW involves each woman in a social network and peer group that will provide mentoring, leadership and support. To educate women students about the dangers posed by sexual assault, domestic violence and stalking, WOWW conducts workshops and weekly meetings that address topics such as date rape drugs and substance abuse as well as healthy lifestyles, coping with stress and time management. To assist women students in developing participation affiliation and opportunities for service, WOWW places a priority on involving its members in on- and off-campus programs and events, such as the Academic Alternative Spring Break in Birmingham, AL; First Night, Safe September, Relay for Life, the Pink-Out, the Vagina Monologues and the Student Entertainment Committee Mocktails, as well as Sexual Assault and Domestic Violence Awareness Month. In addition, WOWW aided the Women’s Council for Development in facilitating a program featuring Adele Shaw on College Career Development.

13th Annual URI Diversity Awards Program  

2011 Diversity Awards Banquet program.