Staff Diversity: Connecting with NC State

Talley Student Union view from elevator

Students walk on campus by the Talley Student Union. Photo by Marc Hall

At the May, 2014 meeting of the University Diversity Advisory Committee, Chancellor Randy Woodson made the observation that staff were not as connected to the university as he would like them to be.

The Staff Diversity unit in OIED took that to heart and made staff connections the focus for 2014-2015. Two new affinity groups were formed, and a major web-based program was created by the Staff Diversity Advisory Board that provides easy access for all university employees to attend traditional events and visit special locations that exemplify the welcoming, inclusive institution that we are. The Connect with NC State website was developed by John Starbuck, web administrator for Campus Enterprises, and received top awards from two national organizations.

The Latin@ Student Support Network (LSSN – pronounced “listen”) brings Hispanic/Latin@ faculty and staff and students together for student support and to strengthen the Latin@ community at NC State. It also aims to make Latin@ faculty and staff aware of and welcome at student- sponsored cultural events. The staff and faculty members of LSSN were introduced to incoming Latin@ students and their families at the Hispanic/Latin@ Student Symposium in August and have joined the students at various activities throughout the year.

The Asian/Asian American Community members have spent time learning about each other’s cultures and experiences on campus. They have also learned about AAPI (Asian American and Pacific Islander) students’ experiences. Since Asia is a vast and multicultural region, this discovery process has been a rich one. The group will continue to meet over the summer.

Speaking of summer, the OIED Staff Diversity unit is sponsoring SOS: Summer Opportunities for Staff, a calendar of events featuring tours of the soon-to-be complete Talley Student Union, a staff reading circle on the student summer reading, coffee chats and lunch and learns. Co-sponsors for the events include the Staff Senate, the African American Faculty Staff Organization, and Campus Enterprises.

New affinity groups are planned for employees who are veterans and employees with disabilities. Anyone interested in helping to start these groups should contact Dr. Deb Luckadoo, director of Staff Diversity.

Dr. Deb Luckadoo is director of Staff Diversity. For more information about OIED’s staff initiatives and programs, please see the Staff Diversity website.

For this article and more, see the full Diversity Digest.