Dreaming in color, succeeding in life: ECC’s celebration of diversity and commitment to equity runs year-round

  • Tags: College Publication
Published 11/26/2018
Two students greet others during HBCU Fair

At Elgin Community College, our values of inclusivity, diversity and equity are tangible the moment you set foot on campus. On any given day, you will find an ongoing recognition and celebration of what makes us unique and brings us closer together: A commitment to creating a safe, inclusive community.

One of the ways students and community members experience this commitment to diversity is through the holistic and thoughtful events featured on campus.

“ECC demonstrates its commitment to diversity by offering intentional programming to meet the needs of various student populations and address their intersecting social identities," said Gregory D. Robinson, assistant vice president of student services and development and dean of students. "Targeted programming for diverse populations is also used to counter the sense of invisibility some students may feel on campus. Students who perceive their campuses as welcoming, engaging, and inclusive are more likely to complete their intended educational goals."

Funded by an ECC Foundation Resources for Excellence mini-grant, ECC hosted its inaugural "I Dream in Color Week," with nationally recognized speakers, leadership workshops, and innovative activities for students and community members to engage in critical thought, develop strategies for success, and become powerful self-advocates. The week concluded with ECC’s second annual Historically Black Colleges and Universities Fair, which featured nearly a dozen out-ofstate schools and attracted more than 250 attendees.

Additionally, the college launched its annual Latinx Heritage Month celebration to recognize the contributions, heritage and culture of Hispanic and Latino Americans. Organizers of "I Dream in Color Week" and Latinx Heritage Month built bridges within the college community by collaborating on events.

"I felt empowered to express my culture and my belief that the future does include my generation,” said Organization of Latin American Students President Alannis Muñoz, who helped plan events for "I Dream in Color Week" and Latinx Heritage Month. “These events are proof that ECC is a diverse, welcoming campus, and I am grateful for the experience I received while participating in a more personal way.”

"Still Processing," a weekly event series that debuted this fall, focuses on giving students opportunities to openly explore and develop an understanding of identity and culture. Similarly, timely discussions related to race, ethnicity, class and socioeconomics, sexual orientation, globalization, identity, and culture are woven into events sponsored by multiple campus committees and departments.

Campus-wide, month-long celebrations will continue with Black History Month (February), Women’s History Month (March) and Asian Pacific Month (April). Many of these events are open to the community.

For information about campus events, visit elgin.edu/news-events.