Oct 102006
 
Authors: Adrian Garcia The Rocky Mountain Collegian

There’s more than one way to spell out CSU.

At the eighth annual Student of Color Leadership Retreat, CSU will mean Collaboration, Strength and Unity.

Organizers emphasize that this retreat, which begins Saturday in the North Ballroom of the Lory Student Center, is open to all.

“People of Color, that phrase tends initially to throw people off,” said Tania Vijarro, a senior political science major and a member of El Centro Student Services. “The retreat is open to all students, regardless of ethnicity. It makes us aware of the issues others face in their community.”

Students participating in the event will work on developing their leadership skills.

“The retreat is an opportunity to enhance and develop their leadership skills,” said Jennifer Williams Molock, the executive director of Black Student Services. “Every year it continues to grow in terms of numbers of students of color who participate.”

Participants will also get a chance to break into groups to talk about different identities and each other’s perspective on what it is to be a minority at CSU.

“(There will be) a lot of small and large group discussions to encourage students involved in identifying who they are as a person, not just their racial or sexual background, learning about yourself, and learn about the other members of your group,” said Alexis Kanda-Olmstead, an organizer from Student Leadership and Civic Engagement.

An alumni panel comprised of four recent graduates is also part of the daylong event; they will discuss what it was like for them to be students of color at CSU and what lessons they learned.

They will also discuss collaborative efforts from others and discovering what they had to offer to their prospective career.

Molock pointed out that another benefit of the retreat is the networking that enables the participants “to find a diverse group, outside of their own community.”

“The relationships they build will allow them to step outside their comfort zones,” she said.

The deadline for registration for the retreat is today.

Staff writer Adrian Garcia can be reached at news@collegian.com.

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Attend the retreat:

Registration is $5 dollars and covers breakfast, lunch, materials and all workshops included in the retreat.

Students can pick up registration forms from Asian/Pacific American Student Services; Black Student Services; El Centro Student Services; Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender Student Services; Native American Student Services; Resources for Disabled Students; Women’s Programs and Studies; and Student Leadership and Civic Engagement.

Registration forms should be turned in to the SCLE office, in Room 195 of the LSC.

For more information, contact Kanda-Olmstead at 491-2181 or Seraphina Wall at 491-1332.

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