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New campus center aims to foster a community of inclusivity

09/09/15 - BOSTON, MA. - Sydney Mokel, SSH'19, left, Alyssa Wilson, DMSB'19, and Camille Serelus, SSH'16, sit in the new Center for Intercultural Engagement in the Curry Student Center at Northeastern University on Sept. 9 2016. Photo by: Matthew Modoono/Northeastern University

Northeastern has launched the Center for Intercultural Engagement, which will provide a range of programming and resources that bring together students, faculty, and staff for discussions around topics such as diversity and identity.

“The mission of the center is to create a community that is inclusive of all people,” said Jason Campbell-Foster, assistant dean for student involvement. “It’s a space for students to explore their intersecting identities. Students define themselves in many ways, and bringing them together to have these types of discussions is our main focus.”

The center is located in a newly renovated space in the Curry Student Center Indoor Quad, previously occupied by the game room, which has moved to the fourth floor. It will provide a range of programming—from residency programs led by faculty and staff, to identity-based socials and meet-ups, to dialogues on inclusivity and identity, to skill-building workshops. The space itself includes both a small and large conference room, two main reception areas, tables, and lounge seating. The space was designed with the flexibility to host many types of events and both small and large groups of people.

The center also has plans to develop a fellows program providing students with experiential opportunities and the ability to engage in peer-to-peer learning and growth.

President Joseph Aoun announced the initiative during his State of the University address last year. The center officially opened Thursday at Night at the Curry Student Center, and its first formal event is scheduled for Tuesday at noon. At the event, Robert Jose, associate dean for cultural, residential, and spiritual life, and Chong Kim-Wong, senior director of student affairs operations, will lead a dialogue on inclusion and gather feedback from students about the center’s role in facilitating discussion and action centered on inclusivity on campus.

Many more events have already been scheduled. The center will host a social for first-generation college students on Wednesday, Sept. 21, at 6 p.m.; a social for international and LGBTQA students on Wednesday, Sept. 28, at 6 p.m.; and a grand opening for the center on Friday, Sept. 30, at 1 p.m. Learn more about the center and upcoming events on Twitter and Facebook.

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