Augusta University’s Multicultural Student Center officially opened its doors to students, faculty and staff on Tuesday, Sept. 17, in the Jaguar Student Activities Center.
This center’s purpose is to create a welcoming environment for students of all identities as well as offering training for student leaders to assist in social change. It is located on the second floor of the JSAC and includes a lounge area, conference table and computer stations.
With inclusivity being one of the university’s core values, Dr. Gretchen Caughman, executive vice president for academic affairs and provost, said this space was “long overdue.”
“Inclusivity is near and dear to our hearts at the university,” she said. “This place is not only important for our students, it’s important to the entire Augusta University community.”
Augusta University President Brooks A. Keel, PhD, agreed with Caughman that the space will play an important part in the university’s legacy.
“Inclusivity and diversity is what we want our university to be,” he said.
A new home for students
Karen Mobley began her new role as director of multicultural student engagement in 2018; however, she is not new to the university. Her journey with the institution started in 2002 in Career Services. Since then, she has continuously gravitated toward her passion for mentoring students, especially within multicultural affairs.
“I envisioned this space for a very long time. It’s phenomenal to have it finally come together. I want this center to help create dialogue across cultural lines and reflect the importance of diversity and inclusion,” she said.
Mobley gave the closing remarks before the ribbon-cutting.
“This is your home,” she concluded.
Taili Cid, AU’s current undergraduate SGA president, was “super ecstatic” when she found out the center would be opening this semester.
“Since there are so many culture-based organizations, this will encourage them to have more events and meet more often,” she said. “This space will encourage more interaction with different organizations and learn about more cultures.”
Cid is also looking forward to potential collaborations with the new center.
“Being that SGA represents everyone, we’re happy to collaborate with them to make changes,” she added.