Meet Ariel McMillan, a new McNair scholar for the 2015-2016 year, who was recently a student speaker during EWU’s Diversity Week in May. Below is an interview with Ariel her involvement in Diversity Week.
Tell us about how you got involved in Diversity Week:
I was introduced to presenting at Diversity Week because of the encouragement of a mentor, Dr. Brackett, I had who also got me involved with NCUR. I went to lasts year’s presentations and I have always loved international/diversity weeks at other schools I’ve attended.
Tell us about your presentation:
I wanted to take the racially controversial events of lasts year’s opinion piece about Ferguson and the students, community, and faculty reactions to create a continuing dialogue. I surveyed and still am collecting data to present at other conferences on top of what I did for NCUR. Plain and simple, I want people to be able to have effective mature conversations about emotional subjects. The main focus of what I wanted to encourage was the introduction and expanding on the Intercultural Competency Continuum. The model gives measurable defined points about attitudes that help understand self and others in social situations concerning culture. It encourages positive personal growth and reflection, and that will promote a more inclusive educated campus environment.
How did you prepare for your presentations (Did you have to do research or was this research you had already done for a class? Are you just this awesome and do side projects? What types of things did you consider when you picked your topic? etc.)
Awesome I am, but this was an extension of my NCUR presentation which was the starting point of exploration around the student attitudes about race at EWU. I considered what skills are really necessary to flourish in our increasingly global communities and what is lacking for exiting students. I took cues from the article as well as the common themes from literature analysis of similar institutions.
Great job Ariel, keep up all the hard work!