– February 11th, 2013 by Abigail DelVecchio –
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Diversity events aim to educate students

This past week Colby-Sawyer held its second annual Diversity Awareness Week. Various events took place daily that touched upon a wide range of awareness issues including, but not limited to, race, gender and the LGBTQ community. Thanks to Associate Dean of International and Diversity Programs Pamela Serota Cote and Associate Dean of Students and Director of Citizenship Education Robin Davis, along with the Cultural Events Committee, Safe Zones, the Community Council, the Student Diversity Council, Student Development, and the Academic Dean’s office, this major step has been made towards educating the college community.

Monday Kye Allums spoke on the issues he has faced as an out transgender Division I athlete. His message was one of learning about sex, gender, and sexual orientation with the hope that acceptance would follow this knowledge. He spent the two hour length of his presentation, “Life as a Transgender Athlete,” reiterating the importance of equality and acceptance of oneself. Senior Kimberly McNally attended the presentation and explained, “I really respect Mr. Allums and his courage to come and speak about the challenges he has overcome in his journey towards acceptance. It’s really wonderful that CSC has made this diversity week an annual event, as it seems necessary in this homogenous community we live in.”

Another highlight of Diversity Awareness Week was the Student Diversity Fair Wednesday. There was a motley of set-ups throughout Ware, including friendship bracelets, henna tattoos, teas from around the world, an ‘open mic’ talent show, and dream catcher making. The interesting thing about the fair was the number of community members that attended with their young children. The aim of this week was to show the diversity that does exist within the small CSC community, and the fact that members of the town of New London are hearing this call shows the success of these events.

Study Abroad Club President and Event Manager for Campus Activities Office Junior Jessica Foye said, “Diversity on campus is so important because it lets us see how much more there is to this world. By celebrating it for a week, we are able to share all of our cultural experiences. Whether you are an international student, studied abroad or just proud of your heritage, diversity is something to be celebrated and valued throughout our lives.”

Foye’s statement summarizes the whole week’s goals accurately, and based on the attendance and campus interactions during each international experience, these aspirations were met and will hopefully continue on into next year as well.

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