While the nation is in a time of transition we, in the Intercultural Center, want to reaffirm our values and mission. We recognize that the role of government is complex and requires changes to meet the needs of the diverse community that exists in the United States of America. We imagine that the swift changes and executive orders that have been issued have created a wide range of emotions for those in our SMC community. Some are elated and believe this is the best direction for this country, some are worried about how these changes will impact their lives going forward, and others are terrified that their civil liberties will be stripped away.
The best response in uncertain times is to remain true to our values. We share the statement made by the Association of Catholic Colleges and Universities, which stated, “As the voice of Catholic higher education, the Association of Catholic Colleges and Universities expresses its strong opposition to the executive order signed by President Donald J. Trump concerning U.S. immigration policy. We stand in solidarity with other Catholic and higher education organizations that recognize the moral obligation of our country to assist migrants, particularly those who are fleeing any kind of persecution.” In the context of the executive orders and memorandums, it is vital that we understand and respect the members of our broadly diverse campus in terms of social identities, ideology, and political views. However, it is also important that the expressions of our views are done with the same consideration and respect that we strive for in our core values as an institution of higher education.
We do not know yet all the ways these executive orders and memorandums will impact your individual lives or our College community, but what we do know is that the Intercultural Center will always be available as a place that both affirms who we are in all of our identities and beliefs and that serves as a site of comfort and education. We recognize the absolute necessity of a diverse and inclusive community to ensure an excellent education. Each of you, regardless of your background is welcome in the Intercultural Center.
As educators we have a responsibility to create safe learning environments where every student can learn and become empowered workers and informed citizens. This imperative seems even more important today. The Intercultural Center’s values of equity and inclusion have not changed and will not change and it is up to each of us to assure that we live out our values in every classroom, every program, and in each individual interaction.
The Intercultural Center strives to create a safe and supportive learning environment that values diversity and builds inclusive community. Through its co-curricular programs and services, the IC educates the campus for cultural competence and social justice.
- Develop and implement co-curricular programs and services that foster cultural competency.
- Provide a safe space for all students to engage their multiple, intersecting, and evolving identities.
- Advocate for and empower historically underrepresented and traditionally marginalized groups.
- Support student leaders to be change agents for social justice.
- Build connections to help create a community that values diversity in all of its forms.
Student Learning Outcomes
As a result of engaging in IC programs and services, students will:
- Explore the multiple, intersecting, and evolving dimensions of their identity.
- Engage with cultures different from their own.
- Practice civil and respectful ways of interacting with people who are different from them.
- Increase their sense of belonging within the Saint Mary’s community.
- Examine and deconstruct power, privilege, and systematic oppression.
- Advocate for historically underrepresented and traditionally marginalized groups.
- Demonstrate leadership to work for social justice.
"Our ongoing examination of who we are in our full humanity, embracing all our identities, creates the possibility of building alliances that may ultimately free us all." - Beverly Tatum