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Equity update, 2016 Voter Cup winners, and much more!

Association Update 12-19-16

MSCSA Association Update - December 2016
MSCSA Association Update - December 2016

Upcoming Events:

January Student Leadership Conference

Date: January 5-7, 2017
Location: Inver Hills Community College & Radisson Blu Mall of America - Bloomington, MN
View event details.

10th Annual
Scholarship Gala

Date: Friday, January 6, 2017
Location: Radisson Blu Mall of America - Bloomington, MN
View event details.

Advocacy Day 2017

Date: February 20-21, 2017
Location: Best Western Plus Capitol Ridge - St. Paul, MN
Register by January 31, 2017!

Power in Diversity Conference 2017

MSCSA is proud to be a sponsor of the Power in Diversity Conference in St. Cloud from January 27-28. This year’s conference is a great opportunity for leadership development and cultural intelligence skills development.
MSCSA would like a student from every MSCSA campus to attend. To encourage student leaders to attend, MSCSA is offering 20 scholarships. Please complete an application by January 8th.

Regional meetings success

The regional meetings were a pilot project to help student leaders gain specific leadership skills in a small group setting. We had a great turnout with a total of 130 students attending the regional meetings that occurred in November and December. We received great feedback from students on how they can be effective advocates through strategy, story-telling, and support.

Office closure notice

The MSCSA office will be closed from December 23, 2016 through January 2, 2017 in observance of the holiday season. The MSCSA staff and cabinet would like to wish you all the warmest of holiday cheer!

MSCSA equity update

Introducing MSCSA’s Equity Team
Recently, two members have been added to the Equity Team. We are excited to have such a great team of individuals on board as we work towards creating more equitable educational opportunities and communities for all students to thrive. The members of the MSCSA Equity Team include Equity and Inclusion Fellow May Yang, and interns Ariel Mendoza, Maggie Nead, and Praise Olowokere. The team has concentrated their efforts in three areas of focus: the Power in Diversity conference, campus diversity plan review, and advocacy. Look for continuing updates from the Equity Team!
Reviewing campus diversity plans
MSCSA’s Equity Team recently started a peer review process for the diversity plans created by each campus. Our team hopes that students can become engaged in the Equity and Inclusion campaign through helping to analyze and assess these plans. The review process is as follows:
  1. Select a campus diversity plan you would like to review. You can choose from any of the Minnesota State community and technical colleges.
  2. Email May (myang@mscsa.org) with your selection. May will send your selected plan as well as the Campus Diversity Plans Review document.
  3. Read and analyze the goals and objectives of the plan by answering eight short questions on the Campus Diversity Plans Review document.
  4. Email your completed questionnaire to May.
Everyone is invited to participate in this process, as student input is especially critical in the assessment of diversity plans. You are also free to review as many plans as you’d like. All feedback received through this process is highly valuable and will inform MSCSA as we work towards a more inclusive equity plan at the Minnesota State system level.

Making equity a priority for Minnesota State’s next chancellor
Earlier this year, MSCSA sent a letter to members of the Minnesota State Board of Trustees outlining four critical steps that the board can take to begin addressing Minnesota’s opportunity gap and set the chancellor up for success. The steps we sent them are below:
  1. Requiring a new System Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Plan is created within 12 months.
    The system lacks an up-to-date equity plan that lays out a vision for how we will improve educational outcomes for students from underserved populations and improve the inclusivity of our institutions. The Minnesota State system should prioritize the development of an equity plan now so the next chancellor has the foundation to finally address these issues.
  2. Double the size of the Equity and Inclusion Office in the system.
    We see an understaffed equity office on the system level that leaves hard working, dedicated individuals unable to do all the work they wish to do. We believe that increased staffing in this office could help the system take a great step forward in addressing key issues.
  3. Bring an Equity Lens to the Board of Trustees.
    The Board of Trustees should lead by example to effectively address these systemic issues. That means it must bring an equity lens to its work on the board.
  4. Create benchmarks and timelines to develop more culturally competent curriculum.
    There have been great conversations with both the IFO and MSCF on ways to both improve the diversity of faculty and create more curriculum that develops cultural intelligence for students. These conversations should move from just conversations to an active planning process that includes key benchmarks and timelines.
The proposals that we have brought forward are really just the first steps in a journey toward a more open and inclusive environment at our institutions.

MSCSA to hold 2016-17 president special election

We would like to inform everyone that we have received a letter of resignation from President Dylan Kelly. On behalf of MSCSA, we want to thank Dylan for his service. Dylan has been a tireless advocate for students. He will be missed and we wish him well as he moves on from MSCSA.
MSCSA will hold a special election to fill the president position during the January Student Leadership Conference, which is scheduled for January 5-7, 2017.
If you have any question, please contact Executive Director Mike Dean (mdean@mscsa.org) or MSCSA Interim President Minda Nelson (vice@mscsa.org).

Announcing the winners of the 2016 MSCSA Voter Cup!

Congratulations on an amazing Get Out the Vote year! Throughout the entire campaign, many campuses have been competing for the Voter Cup, but only two campuses could win. And without further ado... Congratulations to Century College and Minnesota West Community and Technical College-Pipestone! To make this special announcement MSCSA recruited Minnesota Secretary of State Steve Simon.

Warehouse renovation:

Let the changes begin

For the past 4 years, renovating the warehouse has been discussed and planned by MSCSA. We are happy to announce the renovation is finally beginning!
Throughout the summer, the staff at MSCSA has been hard at work cleaning out and sorting the items that were stored in the warehouse, while Executive Director Mike Dean has been collecting bids from contractors. Contractors have submitted their bids, and a decision is expected by early 2017. Soon thereafter, work will begin in the warehouse.
The warehouse renovation will create a new look for the MSCSA office. The warehouse will have a new front entrance for the office, and the rest of the warehouse space will turn into a convention-like center with stadium seating and plenty of meeting space. The goal of the new warehouse is to have a space for student leadership training, used both by MSCSA and student senates throughout the state.
The current front entrance of the MSCSA office will turn into a smaller conference room that will be used to host meetings that occur at the office.
The goal is to unveil the completed renovation at the 2017 Great MSCSA Get-Together! Be sure to check our website for updates, as we will keep you informed on the progress.
If you have any questions about the renovation, please contact Executive Director Mike Dean at mdean@mscsa.org or (651) 203-9454.


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