The search for an associate director for the Black Student Center intensifies


Stephany Mejia, Faculty and Staff Reporter

One out of the four candidates for the position of the Associate Director for the Black Student Center, Ariel Stevenson presented her plans for the center.

Students and faculty gathered in Academic Hall 102 on Dec. 1 to meet Stevenson, who is currently the Diversity Coordinator in the Office of Diversity, Educational Equity and Inclusion.

The Student Academic and Support Services hosted an open forum for the Black Student Center advisor position, as the opening date of the center approached.

The other candidates running for the position are Dr. Jessica Williams, LaPorcha Ingram and Anthony Jett Sr. they all spoke on individual dates.

Williams is a lecturer of Women’s Studies and spoke on Nov. 29 at Academic Hall 102.

Ingram is the Coordinator of Student Involvement for Student Life and Leadership and spoke on Dec. 6 at AH 102.

Jet was the former Director of the Upward Bound Program and Talent Search at Malcolm X College in Chicago, Illinois and will speak on Dec. 8 at AH 102.

Stevenson gave background information about herself.

She comes from a working class family with a single mother. She was a first generation student with a Joseph Coleman scholarship to Albright College.

She said that during college, she had to create her own space, along with other students, where they could feel safe and protected. As a result, she created The African Diaspora at Albright College.

Stevenson wants a center at CSUSM for black students to feel safe, protected and validated just like she did. Stevenson stated it is important for the center to be called the Black Student Center and not the African American Student Center because the name limits to only African Americans.

“Under my leadership, the Black Student Center will focus on black students because that is important. That is what they asked for. It will be a welcoming and inclusive space but they will be the priority of that center,” stated Stevenson.

Stevenson plans to work with other resource centers for students who can identify with multiple centers.

Senior Jake Shuttlesworth also attended the event and sat front row of the lecture room to hear the presentation.

“It is necessary for every section of students to have a place and a space where they can have community and build their identity and be able to fully function in society; and we want them to graduate and move on and be great people in the world,” said Shuttlesworth.

Shuttlesworth also said he wants to educate people ‒ not only the Black Center’s community but also the external community ‒ about events from the past, present that have had an impact in their culture.