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OMSAR sponsors new diversity and inclusion award at April 14 Student Expo

From staff reports | Apr 1, 2016

The Office for Multicultural Student Access and Retention (OMSAR) is sponsoring a new award for students who have examined diversity and inclusion topics for the Ohio University Student Research and Creative Activity Expo this spring.

OMSAR has hosted an award at the Student Expo for its own scholars over the last three years, but now is opening a second award to any Ohio University student presenting research, scholarship or creative work relevant to the office’s mission.

“Given the breadth of presentations at the Expo, OMSAR’s hope is that this award will raise the profile for presentations pertaining to diversity and inclusion,” said Thomas Raimondi III, coordinator for leadership and scholar development at OMSAR. “We also hope that this award and the opportunity for additional recognition of scholarly work in the area of diversity and inclusion will inspire students to be intentional about incorporating diversity and inclusion topics into their future research and creative activities.”

The 2016 OMSAR presentations will feature student research on topics such as representations of the LGBT community in film and media, measuring the influence of Latino state legislators, and international student perceptions and involvement in college athletics.

The Ohio University Student Expo annually makes awards in 72 discipline-specific sessions and 23 special award categories for undergraduate, graduate and medical student work in disciplines ranging from theater to engineering. More than 800 students exhibit their work, and many choose to have their projects judged by a panel of faculty and staff members for the opportunity to win up to $200 in awards.

OMSAR’s new session will be judged by Shari Clarke, the vice provost for diversity and inclusion, and Marlene De La Cruz-Guzmán, director of OMSAR, using the same criteria for first, second and third place awards as used in other Expo sessions, Raimondi said.

Because the diversity and inclusion award is new to the Expo this year, participants were selected from existing registrants for the event. However, OMSAR hopes that in future years, students will self-select for the award, he added.

“We hope that this new diversity and inclusion award will expand OMSAR’s ongoing efforts to bring more diversity and inclusion into scholarly and creative projects across campus and provide a forum for broader discussion about these projects,” Raimondi said.

Other special awards at the Student Expo are hosted by the Voinovich School of Leadership and Public Affairs, Honors Tutorial College, Edison Biotechnology Institute, Appalachian Rural Health Institute, Diabetes Institute, Sigma Xi, the regional campuses, Ohio Center for Ecology and Evolutionary Studies, University Libraries and Center for Entrepreneurship.

The Ohio University Student Expo is open to the public from 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. on Thursday, April 14 at the Convocation Center. Free pizza lunch is provided until 1 p.m. For more information, visit www.ohio.edu/studentexpo.