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Support Team: Recruitment, College Preparation, Intervention, & Community Outreach

MICUA members take action before, during, and after students apply and are admitted to their institutions, providing students from all backgrounds the opportunity to attend an inclusive institution of higher education and succeed.

The Office of Admissions at McDaniel College created a seven-year strategy for new student recruitment that includes work with community-based organizations in multiple states, diversity based campus visit programs and bus tours, and peer mentors, trained by the Director of Diversity and Multicultural Affairs. In 2016, McDaniel and the Howard County Public School System (HCPSS) announced the Teachers for Tomorrow (T4T) program to provide full scholarships, tuition, and room and board to a select group of students who have committed to work in HCPSS for three years after graduation. T4T was created to increase the diversity among HCPSS teachers and the overall workforce, while providing college access to academically talented students with limited resources. The College’s Sankofa Mentoring program provides mentoring relationships for students from diverse backgrounds, while the Global Bridge program supports multinational students. The Student Academic Support Services (SASS) Office partners with students, faculty, and staff to promote students with disabilities to be independent, self-advocate, and achieve their full academic potential. In Maryland alone, the College works with College Bound in Baltimore City, First Generation College Bound in Prince George’s County, and both College Tracks and College Directions, Inc. in Montgomery County, organizations that provide access to higher education for at risk, low-income, or first-generation students.

Under the leadership of its new President, Sheila Bair, Washington College launched George’s Brigade. This new program works with high-performing students whose families would otherwise not have the resources to pay for higher education. Students who are selected to participate have their full needs met, including room, board, and comprehensive support programs to help them succeed from initial enrollment through graduation. The College also introduced test optional admissions and has spread its recruitment efforts across the globe, enrolling students from 35 states and 40 nations, including a substantial population of students from China and India.

Goucher College expanded its diversity recruitment efforts this year with an 11-point plan that incorporates in-person student recruitment in 31 states and on-campus enrollment assistance for students and families.  The plan includes travel assistance for visits by multicultural students during spring on-campus admissions events and visits to college fairs, schools, and organizations that serve underrepresented populations such as Schuler Scholars and the Baltimore Urban League Seminar. Goucher was the first institution in the nation to use student-submitted videos as the decisive factor for admission by offering the Goucher Video Application (GVA). Nearly 52 percent of students who applied with the GVA self-identified as minority. For the past two years, accepted students have been brought into Baltimore for a community service greening initiative during orientation. More than 500 students, faculty, and staff cleaned parks throughout South Baltimore, collecting 14,337 pounds of trash. Community outreach continues throughout the year with Goucher’s Futuro Latino Center.  Each semester, 70 students serve over 100 local immigrants through offering weekly courses in ESL, computer literacy, and more. In addition, the highly popular Goucher Prison Education Partnership (GPEP), which started in 2012, enrolls 60 students at Maryland Correctional Institution for Women and the Maryland Correctional Institution – Jessup, who are taught by Goucher faculty, volunteer students, and professors from other institutions.

This year, Mount St. Mary’s University continued ongoing efforts to promote diversity on its campus and other campuses through membership on the Washington Regional Task Force (WRTF) Against Campus Prejudice. The WRTF provides professional development to address prejudice and bias, promote diversity and inclusion, and advocate for social justice. The Native American Scholarship Program, Third Century Scholars Program, and other minority oriented scholarships are also offered. All students are assigned academic advisors and mentors who serve as first-year seminar professors and coordinate small bi-weekly classes to maintain contact between advisors and students. Through these efforts and the Mount’s commitment to diversity, the University welcomed the Class of 2020, consisting of 37 percent minority students, as the most diverse in its history.

Loyola University Maryland continues to provide a diverse and inclusive campus environment by offering an array of programs and student groups which form a solid support network. First-year students are paired with upperclassmen through the ALANA Mentoring Program to supplement biweekly academic and career enrichment workshops offered to all students to teach critical skills for success including time management, study tips, and different learning methods. ALANA Services’ pre-fall Multicultural Awareness Program assists 30 first-year students in acclimating to campus life through academic enhancement, intercultural exploration, social adjustment, and community service. ALANA Services further provides the Ignatius Scholars Program for 30 first-year students who identify as first-generation, demonstrate significant financial need, or come from a diverse background. This program, which offers assistance with the academic and social transition to college life, is made possible through ALANA Services’ collaboration with the Academic Advising and Support Center and a grant from the Maryland Higher Education Commission.

Stevenson University values on-campus diversity, and to this end, organizes events and programs to foster an inclusive environment. The Office of Academic Support provides tutoring services from diverse tutors and staff on all campuses via the Academic Link and has collected donations from the community to create an on-campus food pantry for students with food insecurities. The University also offers social support for all students.  For example, Partnerships and Student Success pairs at-risk students with mentors for weekly meetings, and the First Gen Support Group supports first-generation students in the academic and social transition to university life. Stevenson also actively recruits diverse students through the Coordinator of Multicultural Recruitment in Undergraduate Admissions, community outreach events with organizations that serve diverse students, and scholarships for students in diversity-based organizations. Stevenson extends its support of diverse students with workforce preparation during the annual Diversity Career Expo. The Expo highlights diversity recruiting initiatives of various employers, allows students to have candid conversations around diversity recruiting, creates pathways for employers to see diverse, capable Stevenson students, and facilitates connections between students and potential employers.

Operating under the belief that diversity of background and experience enriches the St. John’s College community, the College encourages diversity of students and thought on campus. The Admissions Office acts on the campus’ commitment to diversity by offering fly-in programs, organizing special tours for prospective students, and hosting the Summer Academy, an on-campus summer college experience for high school students. The College also exposes students to diverse populations by offering opportunities to engage with and give back to the greater Annapolis community. St. John’s students lead tutoring programs at the Stanton Community Center and at Bloomsbury Square Community Center for kindergarten through eighth grade students. The student-run group, Project Polity, also helps forge sustainable relationships between the College and the community. In 2015, 50 students collected 860 pounds of food to donate to the local Light House Shelter during Project Polity’s annual food drive trick-or-treat event.  St. John’s also sponsors a Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. dinner, a Fannie Lou Hamer award event, and a MLK Lift Every Voice concert to further celebrate diversity.

Maryland Institute College of Art >prides itself in creating many levels of support services, programs, and activities for diverse students. The Diversity Mentor Network, now in its 24th year, has evolved to mirror the growing population of diverse students, expanding to provide first-year Hispanic/Latino, Asian, Native American, and LGBTQIA students with mentors who are upper-class students. To support and yield a diverse incoming class, the Network involves international mentors to address the concerns and needs of students enrolled through the College’s expanded international recruitment efforts. The Office of Admissions also added a full-time international counselor and introduced prospective international students to current MICA students with geographical or cultural connections to facilitate mentoring relationships and answer questions. The Office of Admissions and the Office of Diversity and Intercultural Development also hosted MICA In-Depth, an all-expenses paid prospective student weekend that introduced already-admitted MICA students to the campus culture, student body, faculty, classes, and the surrounding Baltimore area.

Many of the courses at Washington Adventist University have embedded service components to reinforce the importance of diversity within the community.  WAU expanded its campus-wide “Service Day” to two full days (one in the fall and one in the spring) and formed a committee with academic department chairpersons to link each service assignment to academic course objectives. Individual WAU departments utilize their specialty areas to serve the community, such as the Department of Nursing, which includes clinic-based service activities for underserved local areas in many of its courses. Students in biology and chemistry courses, along with pre-service education majors, serve in diverse local elementary schools. Social work majors and students in campus ministry programs also participate in community service projects. The Office of Enrollment Management sponsored a day on campus for eighth grade students from a number of schools in the community, giving more than 200 students, the majority of whom were students of color, an introduction to college life and the college application process.

Hood College ensures its campus reflects the surrounding population through the recruitment of students from urban areas such as Baltimore and Washington, D.C.  Hood recruiters also maintain contact with guidance offices and college advisors at high schools in these areas. In the preparation of marketing brochures, pictures are selected to reflect the diverse populations they recruit and to accurately reflect the current student population at Hood. Once students are on campus, those who self-identify as minority members are encouraged to join Multicultural Buddies, a peer mentoring program comprised of current students who help first-year students with their adjustment to campus. International students at Hood can join a similar program called International Buddies and are assigned host families who play a vital role in their transition. The Center for Academic Achievement and Retention offers general studies and mathematics for students who need assistance in improving basic reading, writing, and mathematics skills and provides tutors who mirror the demographics of Hood’s campus. First-year students who need to sharpen these basic skills can also join the First Year Seminar pilot program.

Under its mission to educate a diverse community of learners, Capitol Technology University provides internal programs and engages in meaningful partnerships to recruit and retain diverse students. To recruit high-ability, high-need STEM students, in 2013 Capitol secured a five-year, $655,000 grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF). The University also offers the Capitol Institute for Student Success, a free program for at-risk entering freshmen that provides developmental coursework in math and English during the summer months. The University maintains active ties with the College Bound Foundation, an organization that encourages and enables Baltimore City students to pursue higher education, and was a founding member of First Generation College Bound, which encourages and empowers youth from low to moderate income families to pursue higher education.

Notre Dame of Maryland University welcomes diverse students to campus by embedding diversity and inclusivity initiatives into student leader training, June orientation, Welcome Week, and NDMU 100 (First Year Seminar). All staff who participate in these activities are required to take diversity awareness training. Counselors in the Counseling Center are provided clinical training and supervision throughout the year to develop multicultural competencies and sensitivities. The training broadens the counselors’ understanding of the roles that a student’s culture, identity, ethnicity, race, gender, and other aspects of diversity play in the counseling process. This year, the Athletics Department was awarded the NCAA Ethnic Minority and Women’s Internship Grant, which provides a two-year paid athletics internship to an ethnic minority or woman who is seeking a career in athletics. The University also grants tuition remission and housing to the recipient of this award. For the past two years, the University has offered Sister Circle, a weekly support group for women of color.

Each college, school, and division at Johns Hopkins University provides unique programs to promote diversity among students and faculty. For example, the Admissions Office in the School of Nursing has a strategic recruitment plan that includes visiting diverse colleges and universities, including historically Black colleges, and hosting exhibits at various conferences. Exhibits have been held at national and regional conferences of the National Black Nurses Association, the Hispanic Nurses Association, and the Annual Biomedical Research Conference for Minority Students, among others. Faculty members attend and incorporate information about the School’s programs into conference visits to attract underrepresented minorities.

The University’s Whiting School of Engineering houses the majority of its community outreach programs in the Center for Educational Outreach (CEO). The CEO serves 2,500 kindergarten through twelfth grade students and teachers in Baltimore to develop community partnerships and increase exposure to and interest in STEM for underserved communities and schools. One prominent example of these programs is a 10-year partnership with Barclay Elementary/Middle School to develop a project-based curriculum that emphasizes critical thinking and engineering.  For graduate students, the Office of Graduate Admissions provides fee waivers or reduced fees for applicants from select organizations which serve underrepresented and minority populations. The School has also started attending and recruiting at the California Forum for Diversity, Graduate Horizons (graduate school mentoring for Tribal Nation students), and the EOP STEM Diversity Expo, which focuses on students with disabilities and veterans.

Students of color in the University’s School of Medicine maintain leadership roles through the Student National Medical Association, Latino Student Medical Association, Asian Pacific Medical Student Association, and the Biomedical Scholars Association. Students of color also serve on the Medical Student Senate (MSS), which is involved in creating and evaluating the School’s policies. To recruit diverse faculty members, the School utilizes non-traditional networks, such as historically Black and Hispanic institutions, to identify and increase a diverse pool of applicants. The Associate Dean for Diversity and Cultural Competence provides an “Unconscious Bias” presentation and serves on all leadership search committees, ensuring that diversity is demonstrated in each search.