One America Community Efforts
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Program: Buffalo State College Equity and Campus Diversity Mini-Grant Program, Buffalo, NY
Contact(s): Dolores Battle, Senior Advisor to the President for Equity and Campus Diversity: (716) 878-6210
Purpose: To encourage campus-based activities that will enhance the campus climate for diversity issues

Background Program Operations Outcomes


The President's Council for Equity and Campus Diversity is comprised of faculty, staff, students and administrators at Buffalo State College. The purpose of the council, which began during the 1996-1997 academic year, is to address discrimination and harassment on campus. In 1996, the council created the Buffalo State College Equity and Campus Diversity Mini-Grant Program. By awarding grants, the council encourages activities that would heighten awareness of campus issues related to racism and diversity.

Program Operations

The criteria for receiving a grant is based on an applicant's connection to both the college's mission statement and its commitment to diversity. Faculty, staff, students and administrators are eligible to apply for the grants. In an attempt to encourage organizations to collaborate with each other, the amount awarded to individuals was limited to $500, while the amount for two or more groups working together on a single project was up to $1,000. The approved mini-grant projects are very diverse. During the 1996-1997 academic year, the Organization of Asian Students supplied textbooks, workbooks and supplies to support lessons in Chinese, Vietnamese, Japanese and Korean language and culture. As a result of the demonstrated interest in Asian languages, the foreign language department is now offering a formal course in Chinese language and culture. During the 1997-1998 academic year, the Elementary Education and Reading Department Literacy Center provided over 100 award-winning multicultural/global books, which were used in undergraduate and graduate reading courses. The books were housed in the Literacy Center on campus for student use.

Outcomes and Significant Accomplishments

In 1997, six mini-grants were funded and executed, and in 1998, the council funded 80% of the applications they received. One of the approved projects in 1998, a Buffalo State Community Day, was an extension of last year's project in which 200 students cleaned up the East side of Buffalo and planted flowers. Although 200 students were expected to participate, the number of participants grew to 300. This volunteer program has provided good visibility for Buffalo State College and has helped students gain an understanding of diverse areas of the community.

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