Monday, February 7, 2011

OMSA Advisory Board Meeting Highlights!

The OMSA Advisory Board meets bi-monthly to address the concerns of UChicago's multicultural community. It is an important asset in helping to ensure that OMSA and the university administration is effectively meeting the needs of the diverse student body. In order to make sure the broader campus community is aware of the concerns the Advisory Board are addressing, the OMSA Blog includes meeting highlights!

Meeting Date: January 25, 2011

Special Guest(s):
  • Eleanor Daugherty, Assistant Vice President for Student Life, Associate Dean of the College Office of the VP, and Dean of Students in the University, Campus and Student Life
  • OMSA is looking to refine its goals for this year to make sure it is effectively meeting the needs of students of color on campus. Continue to talk to Advisory Board members and OMSA staff about how we might better serve you in our mission!
  • Meredith Daw, Director of CAPS will be in attendance for the February 22nd Advisory Board meeting. As always, continue to check back for updates!
  • Ben Yu, SG Liaison to the OMSA Advisory Board suggested that all interested international students should apply to the International Student Advisory Board.

Board Members expressed concerns with Eleanor Daugherty on several issues affecting students of color on campus. She responded to many of our concerns with several ideas and proposals she has in mind to rectify these issues.

  • Board Members again raised concerns about CAPS effectiveness in aiding students of color, the Chicago Career Connection website not being refined enough, and the need for more resources and programming that targets students of color. Also, the Chicago Careers In.. (CCI) programs are not as equally yoked as they should be. Seemingly, a greater emphasis has been placed on Chicago Careers in Business. This emphasis to inhibit CAPS ability to reach a broader student population, specifically students of color.
In response, Ms. Daugherty posed several ideas:
  • The creation of discussion groups comprised of student leaders and CAPS advising and staff members to perhaps find more creative ways to reach specific students' needs.
  • Increasing the prevalence of networking events to both aid minority students as well as refine the remaining CCI programs outside of CCIB.
  • The possibility of requiring undergraduate students to attend CAPS early to alleviate some of the stress associated with the college transition and career aspirations.
  • Improve relationship with grad students through accessibility to fellowships.
Board Members requested updates on Wallace Goode's departure. What efforts are being made to fill his position? What should students know?
    • Ms. Daugherty is currently forming a search committee to find a suitable replacement for Wallace Goode. She assured the board that a very meticulous effort is being made to find a replacement that fits in with the university community effectively. She endeavors to fill the position by early July. 
    • Board Members reiterated the necessity for the replacement to be someone who will have an excellent rapport with all students, especially those of color, as many might say Wallace Goode established. 
    Board members expressed concerns about the administration's view of Multicultural Greek organizations on campus. Multicultural Greek organizations, have different missions to fulfill and different roles within the campus community. Their needs are not necessarily being met by the administration.

      • Ms. Daugherty responded by saying that she is doing her best to make her staff as useful to students as possible. She will continue to work with students in order for their needs to be articulated. She also wishes to acknowledge where progress has been made, and learn from it.
      Overall, this was a very enlightening meeting with an open, honest, and awesome university official. Continue to reach out to the Advisory Board with your concerns! And check the blog for more updates!