Reflections from Soncia

Soncia Reagins-Lilly

Soncia Reagins-Lilly, Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students

Last month, President Gregory L. Fenves laid out his vision for unleashing the “enormous potential of students and scholars to change the world” in his State of the University address. He unveiled new plans that include creating the University Diversity Action Plan to improve campus culture.

Diversity and inclusion are among UT Austin’s institutional priorities. The Division of Student Affairs’ Strategic Goal 2 is to “Create a shared culture that values and includes all students.” One of the outcomes of this goal is that “Students will benefit from the diversity of campus life.”

One of the action steps to achieve that goal includes training for faculty, staff and students. Twenty staff members recently completed the Qualifying Seminar for Intercultural Development Inventory (IDI®) Administrators as a part of that action. The IDI® is one of the leading tools used for assessing and developing intercultural competency skills.

Staff members who have been certified as IDI® Qualified Administrators will form a council leading the Division in the implementation of future training. In the coming weeks, the council will meet to establish a training protocol, plan and rollout.

A big thanks to these staff who trained as IDI® Qualified Administrators:

  • Gloria Allen, Housing and Food Service
  • Desiree Alva, New Student Services
  • Susan Buckenmeyer, Office of the Dean of Students
  • Chris Burnett, Recreational Sports
  • Lisa Dela Cruz, University Unions
  • Edna Domínguez, Office of the VP for Student Affairs
  • Jaden Felix, Office of the Dean of Students
  • Joey Hannah, Counseling and Mental Health Center
  • MJ Huard, Housing and Food Service
  • Justin Jaskowiak, Housing and Food Service
  • Sara Kennedy, Office of the Dean of Students
  • Tiana Lindberg, Housing and Food Service
  • Marcus Mayes, Office of the Dean of Students
  • Chelsie McFarland, Housing and Food Service
  • Katie O’Malley, Office of the Dean of Students
  • EJ Patterson, Recreational Sports
  • Soncia Reagins-Lilly, VP for Student Affairs and Dean of Students
  • LT Robinson, Housing and Food Service
  • Audrey Sorrells, Office of the Dean of Students
  • Aaron Voyles, Housing and Food Service

In addition to this Qualifying Seminar, I’ve also attended the Association of American Universities Vice Presidents meeting in Cleveland, Ohio, and the NASPA Institute for New Vice Presidents for Student Affairs in Alexandria, Virginia, in my own pursuit of training to excel in our work together. I’d love to hear what professional development opportunities you’ve taken advantage of so far this academic year – email me and let me know.

Hook’ em,
Soncia

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