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The Office of Diversity & Community Engagement
Spring 2015
“Diversity creates dimension in the world”
Elizabeth Ann Lawless
ODCE hosts its inaugural
AccessAbility Summit
he Office of Diversity and Community Engagement hosted its
first AccessAbility Summit. This one-day conference featured faculty from The University of Texas at Dallas, Texas Woman’s University, and Michael Thomas, Director of My Possibilities, who
is nationally recognized for his expertise in empowerment and
accommodation issues. The conference was devoted to providing
advocate and provider perspectives on communication challenges involved in seeking and delivering universal solutions for better accommodations.
Desmond Blair, UT Dallas alumnus, provided an insightful video that delved into his personal life and described his
passion for art. Through this short video clip, the audience was
captivated by Blair’s resilience regarding his disability of being
born without hands. Blair exemplifies the excellence that can be
achieved through perseverance and encouragement.
Our expert panelists promoted discussion of design for
the broadest possible range of users, called universal design. The
panelists provided six distinct perspectives: student, faculty, staff,
veteran, advocate and caretaker roles. The focus was on users
Desmond Blair
UT Dallas Alumnus
About Us
Our Mission:
The Office of Diversity and Community Engagement strives to accomplish the
fulfillment of the UT Dallas commitment to embrace, enhance and celebrate
diversity at all levels of the University and our community through the efforts
of faculty, staff, students, the executive leadership and community partnerships.
UT Dallas aspires to be a leader in promoting diversity to reach the highest levels of excellence.
Dr. George Fair
Vice President
for Diversity &
Community Engagement
Dean, School of
Interdisciplinary Studies
Arthur Gregg
Assistant VP for Multicultural Affairs
Director, Multicultural Center
Dr. Emily Tobey
Vice Provost for Faculty Development
Associate VP for Diversity &
Community Engagement
Pg.1 - AccessAbility Summit
Pg.2 - About Us
Pg.3 - Faculty Diversity
Pg.4 - AcessAbility Summit cont.
Pg.5 - The Womens Center
Pg.6 - Multicultural Center
Pg.7 - Community Engagement
Pg.8 - Upcoming Events
Community Engagement
Multicultural Center
Galerstein Women’s Center
Institutional Diversity Initiatives
& ODCE Staff
Contact us:
The Office of Diversity and
Community Engagement,
The University of Texas at Dallas,
800 W. Campbell Road, AD26,
Richardson, TX 75080
Physical Location:
Administration Building AD 3.207
Phone: (972) 883-4566
Fax: (972) 883-4565
Faculty Diversity
Inventor and Mentor:
New Faculty at UT Dallas
Auciello believes one of the most important things he
has done is helping these individuals recover vision. He
feels that this difference for others is the imperative portion of research. In fact, the reason for his interest in
UT Dallas includes the connection to research with UT
Southwestern Medical Center, Texas Instruments, and
other regional areas where he believes essential research
for the future is taking place. He values the spirit for research at UT Dallas.
Numerous students came to Auciello interested in
working with him. He is using this as an experimental
lead into beginning a business-research collaboration
class or program at UT Dallas, bringing science into
the business fields. STEM fields often involve research
at national laboratories or academic institutions. He
feels that the future of science is in small business, and
hopes to encourage business people into science. Small
Business Innovation Research (SBIR) is a program that
offers grants to beginning science businesses in phases.
Phase one offers a six-month grant of $150,000, and
phase two offers grants of $2 million to $3 million, for
two to three years. Auciello states that he hopes these
incentives and programs trying to merge science and
business might increase the number of businesses
involved in innovative research fields. - Jennifer Kriegel
Dr. Orlando Auciello
Material Science Engineering
Distinguished Chair in Engineering
T Dallas has a way of drawing unique, innovative,
and caring individuals to its campus. Orlando Auciello,
a recent addition to the Materials Science faculty was
recognized for one of 2013’s top inventions. Auciello’s
research fostered the development of ultrananocrystalline diamond (UNCD) coating that is used on the Argus
II Retinal Prosthesis System and other biomedical devices. The system restores site for individuals who have
genetically induced photoreceptor degeneration. It does
this by a camera on a pair of glasses that sends a signal to a silicon microchip (coated with the UNCD) implanted in the eye, which then sends a pulse to stimulate
first the bipolar and then the ganglion visual cells, and
other brain regions involved in vision, resulting in the
ability to discern shapes and light. The UNCD ensures
that the chip does not incur damage in the eye’s fluid.
The research for this was conducted during Auciello’s
time working at Argonne National Laboratory, prior to
his move to UT Dallas.
Institutional Diversity Initiatives
AccessAbility Summit
Continued from page 1.
with disabilities, but with an emphasis on applicability to the general user population.
Dr. Fair, VP of Diversity and Community Engagement, stated “We expect the AccessAbility Summit will
increase awareness of how universal design benefits both people with disabilities and any user whose task or environment dictates alternative interaction styles. Through conscious thought and commitment we will be able to
take a proactive approach to ensure that our students, staff, faculty and community members with accommodation
needs are assisted and encouraged to participate within the UT Dallas community.” - Abigail Zapote
Rosie Peterson
Institutional Diversity
Requesting Accommodations at UT Dallas
Students - The Office of Student AccessAbility (OSA) provides:
Academic accommodations for eligible students with a documented physical, mental or sensory disability.
Facilitation of non-academic and environmental accommodations and services.
Resources and referral information, and advocacy support as necessary and appropriate.
Please visit for more information
Faculty & Staff
If you are a faculty or staff member and would like to request an accommodation, please contact the
Employee Relations Staff in the Office of Human Resources. You will be contacted regarding the accommodation
Please visit for more information.
Job Applicants & Visitors
You are welcome to request an accommodation to attend an event or to be assisted in the employment
process. The ADA Coordinator ([email protected] / 972.883.5331) will contact you to coordinate the
necessary arrangements.
Verbiage for event flyers:
“The University of Texas at Dallas is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action University. Students with disabilities needing special assistance to attend please call (sponsoring department/organization and phone number).
Texas Relay Operation: 1-800-RELAYTX.”
For more information on requesting an accommodation or reporting a barrier please visit
Galerstein Women’s Center
Women’s Center Redefines Success
from the book were discussed. Dr. Carmen Cruz, Assistant Director and Director of training at Texas Woman’s University Counseling Center walked participants
through a series of meditation and relaxation excercies.
The event concluded with dessert during which four
panelists shared personal stories, thoughts and insight to
their own successes and lessons learned along the way.
The panel included Dr. Bruce Novak, Dean of the UT
Dallas School of Natural Sciences and Math, Dr. Monica
Powell, Associate Dean of Graduate Programs for the Jindal School of Management, Dr. Gilbert Marez, Director
of Public Relations for Cuidado Casero Home Health and
Hospice and Dr. Ellen Greenwald, Assistant Director of
the UT Dallas Student Counseling Center.
he Empower & Connect Women Series exists to provide our campus and broader community with tools and
confidence for success as well as connect them with resources and mentors. The theme this year is “Thrive: Redefining Success,” based on the book Thrive written by
Arianna Huffington, co-founder and editor-in-chief of
the Huffington Post Media Group. In her book, Huffington shares how our pursuit of money and power has led
to burnout, stress-related illnesses, and loss in the quality
of our relationships, family life and careers. Huffington
suggests we should move away from money and power
as traditional metrics for success and add a third metric consisting of four pillars: well-being, wisdom, wonder
and giving.
Part II of the series, “Thrive: Redefining Success through
Wonder and Giving”, will take place on Wednesday, February 4, 2015, 5:30 p.m. -8:00 p.m. at the Student Union
Galaxy Rooms. Registration is free and now open at - Narcely Ruiz
On October 14, 2014, the Women’s Center hosted part I
of the series, which focused on wisdom and well-being.
The evening kicked off with dinner and conversations facilitated by students, staff, faculty, industry professionals
and community members in which a variety of concepts
Multicultural Center
Welcome the Year With
Our Newest Staff Member
s we said goodbye to our highly esteemed colleague, Dr. Netreia McNulty,
the Multicultural Center was on the lookout for a candidate to take her position. And with a new year comes new beginnings. We are happy to introduce
Monica Williamson as the Multicultural Center’s newest Student Development Specialist.
Monica Williamson
Student Development Specialist
Multicultural Center
Williamson’s role focuses on student retention within the department’s scholarship recipients, aptly named the Diversity Scholars. Like many of our Diversity Scholars, Williamson also had to make a big adjustment to college life
when she attended Texas Tech University. One of the biggest challenges she
faced was the transition of moving from Dallas to Lubbock. Fortunately, Williamson benefited from a retention program where incoming students were
matched with a staff or faculty mentor. This program allowed her to feel at ease
at her new school and she eventually went on to graduate in the fall of 2009.
Williamson began her journey to UT Dallas as an academic advisor for the
Naveen Jindal School of Management.
When the position at the Multicultural Center became available, Monica jumped at the opportunity to serve students
just as she had been served at her alma mater. She is now responsible for advising 31 Diversity Scholars along with
various student organizations. The students are required to meet Monica on a monthly basis, four times a semester. She
loves that she can help students academically but also socially with relationships on campus, leadership positions and
other issues that trouble every college student. She finally feels completely immersed within the UT Dallas community
and we couldn’t be happier to have her as part of our team. - Abigail Zapote
The MC Celebrates
Native American & Hispanic Heritage
Community Engagement
Campus Welcomes High School
Students to Academic Symposium
hoosing the right college can be a stressful
activity especially for first-generation college students.
On October 22, the Department of Community Engagement hosted the annual Minority Scholars’ Symposium
for more than 187 high school juniors and 20 counselors
from eight high schools in Dallas and Richardson ISDs.
The goal of the program is to showcase the University to
underrepresented, high-potential students. UT Dallas Diversity Scholars and students from several multicultural
student organizations hosted the high school students.
This year, the program allowed students to choose from a
variety of informational workshops or lectures led by faculty and staff on topics including computer science and
the Pre-Law program. The students also participated in
campus tours and spoke with current UT Dallas students
about their experience on campus.
The Department of Community Engagement selected the
eight participating high schools because they have college
advising centers staffed by UT Dallas undergraduate students in the G-Force Program. The centers, also known as
GO Centers, provide near-peer mentoring to high school
seniors. The G-Force mentors will be able to follow-up
with the Symposium participants through graduation to
help them enroll at UT Dallas or any other higher education institution.
“Our goal is to ensure that students stay connected to the
university after the Minority Scholars’ Symposium ends,”
said Raul Hinojosa Jr., director of community engagement. “The program shows them the tremendous opportunities available at UT Dallas.”
For more information about the Symposium or the
G-Force Program, contact the department at 972-8834546 or visit us online at
- Anh Nguyen
Gender Studies Lecture Series: Lisa Elliot Empower & Connect Women’s Series: Thrive, Redefining Success
Safe Zone Ally Training
Introduce a Girl to Engineering Day
iWeek: Henna with International Center
Advanced Safe Zone Dialogue
Gender Studies Lecture Series: Sarah Richardson
National Day of Silence
Lavender Graduation (RSVP only)
MLK Jr. Celebration Breakfast
Happy Birthday Black History Month
Black History Month “Dark Girls” film screening
Black History Month “Dear White People” film screening
Meteor Theater: Get on Up
SUAAB Variety Showcase: Godfrey
Black History Month Social Supper
Black History Month Africa Night
Black History Month The Big Dinner
Lunar New Year Celebration
Diversity Dialogues
European Heritage Celebration
Harambee Dinner & Awards
Cinco De Mayo Recognition
Hispanic Leadership Banquet
African American Male Academic Bowl
Financial Aid Super Saturday
President’s Volunteer Service Awards
The Experience
1/28, 2/25, 3/25, 4/29 2/4, 2/11, 2/18, 2/25 3/5 4/1
4/23 Noon - 1 p.m.
5 p.m. - 7 p.m.
7 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.
7 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.
4 p.m. - 7 p.m.
Arts & Technology Bldg ATC 1.201
Student Union SU 1.614/SU 2.508
Davidson Auditorium
SOM 1.118
Clark Center CN 1.112
1/29 2/4
2/13 2/26
4/2 4/2
5/12 7:30 p.m. - 9:30 p.m.
5:30 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.
Noon - 5 p.m.
10 a.m. - 2 p.m.
1 p.m. - 3 p.m. 5:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.
7:30 p.m. - 9:30 p.m.
11 a.m. - 2 p.m.
5:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.
Jonsson Performance Hall JO 2.604
Galaxy Rooms SU 2.602
Faculty Dining Hall
SU 2.905
Women’s Center
SSB 4.300
Women’s Center
SSB 4.300
Galaxy Room - B
SU 2.602
Davidson Auditorium SOM 1.118
SU Plinth
McDermott Suite
MC 4.400
1/22 2/3 2/4 2/12 2/13
2/19 2/21 2/25 2/26 3/3 3/11 4/26
5/1 5/8 8:30 a.m. - 10:30 a.m. Galaxy Rooms
6 p.m.
Visitor’s Center Atrium
7:30 p.m.
Jonsson Performance Hall JO 2.604
7:30 p.m.
Clark Center
CN 1.112
8 p.m.
Davidson Auditorium SOM 1.118
8 p.m.
Clark Center CN 1.112
6 p.m.
Galaxy Rooms
SU 2.602
7 p.m.
Galaxy Rooms
SU 2.602
4:30 p.m. - 6:30 p.m. Galaxy Rooms
SU 2.602
Galaxy Rooms
SU 2.602
5 p.m. - 7 p.m.
McDermott Suites
MC 4.4
7 p.m. - 9:30 p.m.
Galaxy Rooms
SU 2.602
6 p.m. - 8 p.m.
Galaxy Rooms
SU 2.602
Noon - 2 p.m.
Galaxy Rooms
SU 2.602
5:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m. TBD
2/21 3/2 4/11 8 a.m. - 1 p.m.
1 p.m. - 3 p.m.
8 a.m. - 5 p.m. *For descriptions and updates on events please visit
Davidson Auditorium SOM 1.118
Richardson High School*
FO 2nd Floor Atrium