Tag Archive | "Division of Student Affairs"

‘Know Justice, Know Peace’ Symposium Addresses Race, Social Injustice, and the American Dream

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‘Know Justice, Know Peace’ Symposium Addresses Race, Social Injustice, and the American Dream

By Megan Ondrizek
UM News

UM Professor David Ikard, left, moderates the “Know Justice, Know Peace” panel discussion, which included, from left, activist Johnetta “Netta” Elzie, writer and author Jelani Cobb, Sybrina Fulton, and Pittsburgh rapper Jasiri X.

UM Professor David Ikard, left, moderates the “Know Justice, Know Peace” panel discussion, which included, from left, activist Johnetta “Netta” Elzie, writer and author Jelani Cobb, Sybrina Fulton, and Pittsburgh rapper Jasiri X.

CORAL GABLES, Fla. (April 2, 2015) — A diverse and passionate audience of nearly 200 students attended the “Know Justice, Know Peace” symposium at the University of Miami’s Student Activities Center last Wednesday, listening to a panel discussion and voicing their concerns about race, social justice, police conduct, and the concept of the American dream.

Moderated by David Ikard, director of Africana Studies and professor of English in UM’s College of Arts and Sciences, and co-sponsored by UM’s Africana Studies Program and the Division of Student Affairs, the discussion acknowledged students’ ability to take a stand against racism, particularly when their personal experiences are deeply rooted in social injustices. Read the full story

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Navigating with Courage: Pat Whitely Passes the NASPA Reins at Record-Breaking Conference


Navigating with Courage: Pat Whitely Passes the NASPA Reins at Record-Breaking Conference

UM News

Dr. Jennifer Arnold and Pat Whitely were reunited at the NASPA conference.

Jennifer Arnold and Pat Whitely were reunited at the 97th annual NASPA conference in New Orleans.

CORAL GABLES, Fla. (March 22, 2015)—Pat Whitely, UM’s vice president for student affairs, is wrapping up her successful term as chair of the board of directors of the Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education in New Orleans, where on Sunday she welcomed a record-breaking 7,600-delegates to the 97th annual meeting of the organization known as NASPA. She also was reunited with UM alumna Jennifer Arnold, the “little” doctor whose own success speaks volumes about the value of student affairs professionals on campus.

Arnold, who quips that she became a neonatologist so her patients would be smaller than she is—she stands just 3 feet 2 inches tall—and her husband, Bill Klein, a successful entrepreneur who also has a rare type of dwarfism, are the stars of the TLC docudrama The Little Couple. Now in its seventh season, the show has chronicled their busy lives, including the adoption of their two children and Arnold’s battle against a rare cancer. So it was fitting that, on Sunday, Arnold, who was a resident assistant at Mahoney Residential College for three years in the mid-1990s while Whitely was associate director of residence halls, was the opening speaker for the four-day conference centered on a theme she knows something about: Navigating with Courage.

In her remarks and a Q&A session moderated by Whitely, Arnold, who earned her undergraduate degrees in psychology and biology at UM and her medical degree at The Johns Hopkins University, spoke fondly of her campus experiences and the teachers and advisors who helped her become the person she is. Now an assistant professor of pediatrics at Baylor College of Medicine and the medical director of the Pediatric Simulation Center at Texas Children’s Hospital, she is a sought-after speaker on both overcoming obstacles and health care simulation education.

Navigating with courage is also an appropriate motto for Whitely, who took the helm of the world’s leading association for student affairs professionals last March, a time of intense scrutiny and rapid changes in higher education, propelled by new technologies, a shifting regulatory and compliance landscape, and the continued focus on evidence-based practices. But drawing on her 18 years as UM’s student affairs vice president, when she never stopped instituting innovative, new strategies to enhance student life and keep pace with the changing world, Whitely guided NASPA with an eye trained on keeping the organization relevant and results-oriented.

“Dr. Whitely is widely recognized as one of the nation’s leaders in student affairs and her leadership as chair of the NASPA Board of Directors has been extraordinary,” NASPA President Kevin Kruger said. “She has a keen eye for both understanding the complexity of issues facing higher education today and for developing effective campus-based strategies to deal with these challenges.”

Over the past year, she worked with Kruger on developing resources to combat gender-based violence and sexual assaults on campus, and travelled extensively, discussing “Challenges in Changing Times in Student Affairs” at more than a dozen meetings and conferences of student affairs professionals across the United States.

She also oversaw the revision of NASPA’s strategic plan, extending it through 2018; convened NASPA’s first-ever Community College summit, in New York City last October, to strengthen NASPA’s strategic support of student affairs professionals in the nation’s community colleges; appointed a task force to revise professional competencies recommended for student affairs professionals; and in conjunction with her former UM colleague Richard Walker, also a UM alumnus and the vice president for Students Affairs at the University of Houston, planned the record-breaking annual conference in New Orleans, a city that also knows a little about navigating with courage.

As Walker, Whitely, and Kruger said in their welcome message to conferees, the theme was inspired by New Orleans’ waterways and resilience in the aftermath of the nation’s costliest and one of the deadliest hurricanes 10 years ago this August. “Success in higher education has a major influence on today’s society and the communities in which our campuses are located,” they said. “While we are in New Orleans, we will take time to remember and recognize the 10th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina, a natural disaster that both devastated the community and highlighted the ways higher education could pull together to assist each other in times of need.”

The leading association for the advancement, health, and sustainability of the student affairs profession, NASPA has 14,000 members in all 50 states, eight U.S. territories, and 25 countries. Whitely, who has served NASPA in various capacities for more than 20 years, is the first UM administrator to be elected chair of its board of directors.

Prior to her appointment as UM’s vice president for student affairs in 1997, she served as director of student life from 1994 to 1997, and as residence coordinator, and assistant and associate director of residence halls from 1982 to 1994. Over the years, she has received numerous awards from UM students, as well as the NASPA Pillar of the Profession in 2009, and the NASPA Scott Goodnight Award for Outstanding Performance as a Vice President for Student Affairs in 2013. Whitely is only the third individual in NASPA history to receive both the Goodnight award and serve as chair of the association.

“It has been a privilege to work with her this past year,” Kruger said, as Whitely prepared to hand the reins to her successor, Frank Lamas, the vice president for student affairs at California State University, Fresno. “Under her leadership NASPA has achieved new records in membership and conferences, including the conference in New Orleans with a record-breaking 7,600 attendees. More importantly, Dr. Whitely has been instrumental in positioning NASPA to respond to a growing list of critical issues facing higher education.”






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Student Affairs Seeks Laurel Awards Nominations for Outstanding Student Affairs Staffers by March 27

The Division of Student Affairs is seeking nominations for the Laurel Awards, which recognize outstanding Student Affairs staff members and student employees who exemplify outstanding job performance and exceptional work on behalf of students. Nominations are due no later than Friday, March 27.

Individuals can be nominated only by staff members or students who have worked closely with them. A committee representing the Division of Student Affairs is responsible for reviewing the nominations in each category and choosing the Laurel Award recipients, who will be recognized at the annual awards program on Thursday, April 16.

The 2015 committee members are: Ivan Ceballos, Housing & Residential Life; Brittany Brewster, Butler Center; Tom Soria, Wellness Center; David Furones, Wellness Center; Gou Jian, Dean of Students Office; Michael Baumhardt, Student Activities; Brandon Gross, Student Center Complex; Madelyn Elia, undergraduate student; Nora Villegas, Housing & Residential Life; Kisha Bazelais, Counseling Center; Quita Phillips, graduate student; and Mohamed Anis, graduate student.

The Staff Nomination Form and Student Nomination Form are available online. For more information, visit www.miami.edu/laurelawards.

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Preventing Sexual Violence on Campus Is Everyone’s Job


Preventing Sexual Violence on Campus Is Everyone’s Job

By Robin Shear
UM News

Peter F. Lake

Peter F. Lake

CORAL GABLES, Fla. (February 27, 2015)—The University of Miami hosted a seminar titled “Preventing Campus Sexual Violence and Understanding UM Responsibilities under Title IX” on Thursday led by Peter F. Lake, an internationally known expert in the field. A professor of law, Charles A. Dana Chair, and director of the Center for Excellence in Higher Education Law and Policy at Stetson University College of Law, Lake, who is also his institution’s interim Title IX coordinator, had a simple message about a complex subject:

Title IX compliance is everyone’s job.

Enacted by Congress in 1972, Title IX is a comprehensive federal law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in any federally funded education program or activity. It aims to eliminate barriers to educational opportunity caused by sex discrimination, including sexual harassment and violence.

The all-day seminar offered an overview of Title IX regulations with specific reference to the growing national concern about sexual violence on college campuses.

Storer Auditorium was nearly full, with attendees from throughout the University, including the medical and marine campuses, as well as the School of Law.

“This is a very, very important day for us at the University,” Patricia A. Whitely, UM’s vice president for student affairs, said. “I am delighted that this session has come together.”

Lake pointed to key Title IX cases of the last few years, such as those out of Yale, the University of Montana, and UNC Chapel Hill. He cited a report published in April 2014 by the White House Task Force to Protect Students from Sexual Assault called “Not Alone,” available at notalone.gov, which offers a series of Frequently Asked Questions to help navigate this complicated but potentially life-saving regulatory issue.

The bottom line is not only to know all the regulations of Title IX, said Lake, but also to humanize them and adopt the spirit of Title IX on an institutional level by owning and enacting it in four key areas: organization and management, investigation and discipline, victim and respondent rights and needs, and campus culture/climate. Compliance comes from “here and here,” Lake said, pointing to his heart and his head.

According to Lake, one in five women is sexually assaulted while in college, with freshmen and sophomores targeted most often. “Alcohol has been weaponized,” he added, referring to the increasing number of cases of “incapacitated assaults,” where victims are under the influence.

President Donna E. Shalala, who convened a 25-member Campus Coalition on Sexual Assault Prevention and Education at the University, spoke frankly at the opening of the event. “We have zero tolerance,” she said. “We are serious about the safety of everyone who works, studies, and gets services here. We want to create an atmosphere and culture that clearly says what is acceptable. We are fearless about taking on these cases.”

To learn more about Title IX compliance and resources at the University of Miami, visit http://www.miami.edu/index.php/wep/title_ix.


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Cosford Cinema Kicks Off Fall Semester in 3-D

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Cosford Cinema Kicks Off Fall Semester in 3-D

The Cosford Cinema screened The Lego Movie, it's first 3-D film, last week.

The Cosford Cinema screened The Lego Movie, it’s first 3-D film, last week.

By Megan M. Ondrizek
UM News

GABLES, Fla. (September 5, 2014)­—Screening the first 3-D film shown on campus, The Lego Movie, last week, the Bill Cosford Cinema inaugurated the ambitious technology upgrades the Division of Student Affairs, in partnership with the School of Communication and the student Cinematic Arts Commission (CAC), completed over the summer.

“This technological upgrade for the Bill Cosford Cinema is terrific and timely for the University of Miami,” said Patricia A. Whitely, UM’s vice president for student affairs, at a ribbon-cutting ceremony celebrating the Cosford’s new BARCO digital cinema projectors and Dolby 3D system. “This new cinema system will allow us to not only screen movies in high-definition and 3-D, but also allow the opportunity to offer even more ‘sneak-peek’ films on our campus.”

Student Robert Pinney, chair of the CAC, added that, “As the movie industry begins to shift from reels to a digital format, it is necessary for us to adapt to the changing environment. This projector puts us on the same level as the major movie theaters, such as AMC and Regal, in terms of our capability to show the latest movies and bring sneak previews to campus. Ultimately, all this is done so that CAC can keep providing quality entertainment to students on this campus.”

A full schedule of film screenings at the Bill Cosford Cinema can be found online.

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