One hundred forty-three students were recognized at the Second Annual Inclusive Excellence Student Awards Ceremony held on May 2 in the Betty R. Tipton Room. The event, sponsored by the Advising Center, celebrated the academic achievements of Eastern's "ALANA" students--African-American, Latino, Asian and Native American students.
"Across the country, minority students are underrepresented on college campuses and graduate at lower rates," said Eastern President Elsa Núñez. "Here at Eastern, we are committed to reversing that trend by fostering a community of inclusion, diversity awareness and academic excellence."
Carmen Cid, a Latina from Cuba with nearly 30 years' experience as a college professor and administrator, and a distinguished scientist in the field of ecology, delivered the keynote address. "You have diverse backgrounds and broad educations; you can do more than one thing," said Cid, currently the interim president of Quinebaug Valley Community College and long-time dean of Eastern's School of Arts and Sciences.
"Finding your inner voice takes time and practice." She also spoke of the benefits of diversity: "In ecology, the more diverse an ecosystem, the healthier it is. This is true for a college campus, too, and for society."
Jonathan Correa, a sophomore biology major from Trumbull; Njeri Dodson, a freshman biology major from Bridgeport; Destiny Hartmann, a freshman accounting major from Stonington; Tyler Hernandez, a sophomore education major from Waterbury; Kayla Enwerem, a freshman from Waterbury; and Briana Tucker, a freshman social work major from Glastonbury, were named recipients of the Diversity Scholars Award.
Inclusive Excellence Awards were presented to James Chadic, a senior mathematics major from Norwich; Vanessa Cioe, a senior sports and leisure management major from Fall River, MA; Shaleah Richards, a senior psychology major from Hartford; and Gregory Riley, a junior biology major from West Haven.