Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Diversity Appreciation Lunch

On Wednesday, April 27th, the Office of Diversity and Inclusion hosted its annual Diversity Appreciation Lunch. This event was held to honor the departments, organizations, and individuals who have supported the Office of Diversity and Inclusion throughout the 2015-2016 school year. Students were given the opportunity to reflect on the events and programming conducted throughout the year with pictures and conversations.

During this lunch, the graduating members of the BOLD and MENtal Freedom program were honored with a diversity stole. These members included Alejandra Ramirez, Ashley Woodard, Rosalia Leon, Valmy McKenney, Brian Ngwa, and Ashton Manley.

In addition, the new executive board members of MENtal Freedom were announced. These members included Traivohn Jefferson, Corey Brown, Jeremiah Fontenot, and Andre McQuitty.

For more information, contact the Office of Diversity and Inclusion at

Thursday, April 14, 2016

No H8 In My School

During the week of April 11-14th, The Office of Diversity and Inclusion hosted a No H8 In My School initiative to promote the awareness and exclusion of bullying and discrimination in the school system. For this four-day event, students had the opportunity to have their face painted and photo taken with the No H8 In my School logo. Students were encouraged to wear this logo during the day to encourage conversations.

For more information, contact The Office of Diversity and Inclusion at

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Dr. Reverend Cindi Love

On Wednesday, April 13th, The Office of Diversity and Inclusion brought Dr. Reverend Cindi Love to campus to present on her book, “Would Jesus Discriminate?”.

Reverend Dr. Cindi Love has served as a speaker, author, ordained minister, and businesswoman.

Rev. Dr. Love is the author of “Would Jesus Discriminate? The 21st Century Question.” In this book, Rev. Dr.  Love challenges churches to reflect on their roles in the discrimination against those in the LGBTQ+ community. 

Attendees learned the significance individuals play in discrimination. One’s first experience with discrimination happens typically between the ages of four and nine. These experiences last with individuals into adulthood. In this presentation, Rev. Dr. Cindi Love spoke to the audience about her own personal hardships with discrimination and invited members to share their own experiences. Rev. Dr. Love invited students to compare their experiences to what they believe about religion. 

Rev. Dr. Love’s discovered that if an individual’s first experiences of discrimination were linked to someone of the church, an individual would be more likely to link this behavior to God and Christianity as a whole.

For more information, contact the Office of Diversity and Inclusion at

Monday, April 11, 2016

Dr. Beck Munsey

On Monday, April 11th, The Office of Diversity and Inclusion brought Dr. Beck Munsey to campus to present “Gender Variant and Trans* 101”.

Dr. Beck Munsey is a speaker, professor, and therapist. Dr. Munsey has worked with a broad spectrum of clients, utilizing traditional and experiential approaches to therapy. 

Among their areas of expertise are trauma support, stress management, foster care, lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender issues, adolescent transition issues and depression/ anxiety. 

Dr. Munsey used their experiences identifying as transgender to discuss issues that affect those in the transgender community.

Dr. Munsey also explored correct pronoun use, the evolution of the concept of gender, and the effects of negative stereotypes. Open discussion was encouraged as Dr. Munsey addressed future educators and social workers and provided recommendations on how to make students in the transgender community feel both safe and welcome. Dr. Munsey provided resources for attendees to utilize that would aid them in helping individuals in the transgender community who may need professional emotional support.

For more information, contact the Office of Diversity and Inclusion at

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

LGBTQ+ Diversity Dialogue

On Wednesday, April 6th, The Office of Diversity and Inclusion hosted a Diversity Dialogue designed to raise awareness about issues affecting individuals in the LGBTQ+ community.

During this event, students participated in discussions about LGBTQ+ representation in the media and Reparative/Corrective therapies. While discussing media representation, students explored the impact negative representation has on the personal and professional lives of individuals in the LGBTQ+ community. A discussion of the role the media plays in perpetuating harmful stereotypes was also held. Reparative/Corrective therapies were also discussed and facilitated by Dr. Leigh Baker and James Dinh from the Student Counseling Center. Students were engaged as they discovered “treatments” used to “correct” those in the LGBTQ+ community such as electric shocks, ice-baths, and “corrective” sexual assault. Students gained an understanding of these issues and were provided with resources to spread awareness.

For more information, please contact the Office of Diversity and Inclusion at

List of Resources provided by Counseling Services:

  • The Lies and Dangers of Efforts to Change Sexual Orientation or Gender Identity:
  • National Center for Lesbian Rights. #BornPerfect: The Facts About Conversion Therapy:
  • Suicide Prevention Resource Center. (2008) "Preventing Suicide among Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgendered, and Questioning Youth and Young Adult":

Friday, April 1, 2016


On Friday, April 1, The Office of Diversity and Inclusion partnered with the School Wide Activities Team (SWAT) to host the 3rd annual #Leaders4Diversity conference. #Leaders4Diersity is a one-day conference that provides students with an opportunity to strengthen their understanding of diverse topics. Students develop leadership skills as they reflect on their identity and impact in a diverse society.

“Deaf Culture”

Students were engaged as they reflected on the meaning behind deaf culture and the privileges the “hearing world” have. Emmalee Morgan,
the Tarleton State Coordinator for Student Disability
Services and an interpreter, presented this session.

 “Managing Conflict Effectively”

Students discovered the five stages of team relationship
development and reflected on barriers that can cause conflict. Students were able to examine qualities that cause conflict and strategies to resolve conflict.
This session was presented by Landan Schaffert, the keynote speaker for the conference.

“Diversity and Voting Rights: The Challenges of Equal Representation”

During this session, Dr. Eric Morrow (the chair of the Department of Social Sciences) challenged students to think about equity in relation to growing diversity. Students reviewed examples in history where voting rights and representation have posed a challenge to society.

Workshop II

                “Links to Empower”

This session was presented by Kristina Marshall. Marshall is a full-time professor of Social Sciences at Baker College of Owosso.  She is a member of the advisory council for the National Conference on Race and Ethnicity in American Higher Education. Students were able to gain an understanding of oppressed groups within the United States in this interactive sessions. Students focused on the power of privilege and he importance of recognizing intersectional identities.

“Bring your Broom...’Cause It’s A Mess!”

             Students examined fighting and tension in this engaging session. Students learned useful techniques to confront these issues in student organizations, teams, and personal relationships. This session was presented by Corinne Ogle. 

Corinne Ogle is a former graduate student who has worked in the Office of Diversity and Inclusion. She has worked with underprivileged youth in the Youth after school program, and facilitated the Washington Leadership Conference for the National FFA.

“Hongry with an O is Different than Hungry
with a U”

During this presentation, Misty Smith raised awareness about resources for students with food instability. Students were engaged in an activity to simulate the impact decision-making has when one is faced with limited resources. Misty Smith is currently the Title IV-E Project Director and Instructor of Social Work at Tarleton State University. In addition, Mist Smith is
 a volunteer in the Tarleton Food Pantry.


During lunch, Students were joined by keynote speaker Landan Schaffert, a legally blind speaker and teacher with a passion for achievement and positive difference. In 2010, Schaffert was the National FFA Secretary. Schaferrt shared personal stories and connected with students during the lunch portion of the conference. Students were able to hear about the triumphs and challenges Schaffert faced and were encouraged to make a difference.

Workshop III

“Soldiers and Diversity”

In this workshop, the cultural reference of “Army Green” was explored. Through her 13 years of experience, SSG Stachura examined diversity and inclusion in the U.S. Army. SSG Stachura interacted with students as they looked into what defense means when it comes to defending one’s experiences and background.

“Diversity at its Core”

This session was designed to provide student leaders with tools to assess their role with involving students in decision-making. Barriers and biases were examined as students addressed differences in socioeconomic status, race, sexuality, and gender. This session was facilitated by Kendrick Spencer, the Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs at Jackson State University.

“Slavery, Then & Now”

Dr. Michael Landis and Texans for Freedom addressed the issue of slavery in terms of historical black slaver and modern-day slavery in this informative presentation. Dr. Michael Landis serves as an assistant professor of history at Tarleton State University. He is also a board member of Historians Against Slavery and the editor of The Historians Against Slavery blog.

 Workshop IV

“Overcoming Barriers and Embracing Mental Freedom”

This panel provided students with the opportunity to explore personal experiences of Mental Freedom. This organization is a mentoring program for traditionally underrepresented men of color. Students were able to discover the experiences and characteristics that can become barriers to success.

“What It Is to Be a House Guest in Your Own Body”

This creative writing workshop was presented by Tro’juan Henderson. Henderson is a national poet and advocate for survivors of abuse and sexual assault. In this workshop, the topics of gender inequality and beauty standards were explored.

“Matching Game Extravaganza: Test Your Rainbow Knowledge”

Presented by the Gay-Straight Alliance, students were tested on their knowledge of the LGBT+ community. Assumptions were explored as        students increased their knowledge of recognizing personal bias.

Thank you, sponsors!

The #Leaders4Diversity Conference was sponsored by Student Success and Multicultural Initiatives, Center for Academic Readiness and Success, International Programs, JTAC News, Career Services, Academic Resources Center, Health Services, Academically High Achievers, and Academic Advising.

 For more information, contact the Office of Diversity and Inclusion at

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Lateefah Simon

On Wednesday, February 15th, The Office of Diversity and Inclusion hosted Lateefah Simon. Ms. Simon facilitated a discussion on “Women, Empowerment, and Social Justice”. As the Director of the Rosenberg Foundation, a speaker, and women’s rights advocate, Ms. Simon shared her experience working with those in low-income communities, women, and those who have been incarcerated.

Students were engaged as Ms. Simon shared what she called her “migration story”. Students were empowered to overcome obstacles to become social change agents and recognize injustice and poverty. “If not you, who?” Ms. Simon asserted as she challenged students. A question and answer panel followed the presentation. 

For more information, please contact the Office of Diversity and Inclusion at 

"Women's history month pushes us to think about intersectionality, who we are, and how brave we can be.” – Lateefah Simon