Robin Holmes FAQ on OMAS

10/31/2011: Better late than never. The students who oppose this have a blog here.

Center for Multicultural Academic Excellence
Responses to Recent Questions
1. Is OMAS being eliminated?
You will no longer see the name Office of Multicultural Academic Support (OMAS). 
However, all of the current staff of OMAS will continue at the University with
responsibilities to serve students.  Multicultural programs are being expanded and other
initiatives are being developed to ensure that students have the support to be successful at the University of Oregon. 

2. Whose idea was this?
 It was a discussion among a number of people in recognition of the need for more
multicultural services at the University and a desire to follow innovative practices for
providing those services in the most effective way possible.  Feedback from the recent Vice President for Institutional Equity and Diversity listening sessions helped to solidify the need for more services for underrepresented students at the University of Oregon. 

3. When will the change happen?
It is an on-going process.  The three program area directors (Audrey Cramer, Jane Irungu and Chicora Martin) are working together to create a strategic plan for the new Center for
Multicultural Academic Excellence.  A grand opening event will be held during the UO MLK celebration week.  However, there is an open forum scheduled for November 3, 2011 at noon in the Fir Room, EMU so we can provide more information to interested students.  Additionally, the area directors of the new center are always open and available to meet with students, faculty, and staff with questions. 

4. Is the student lounge of OMAS being closed?
 No. The lounge area will be available.  Some staff offices will move, and efforts are being
made to create more multicultural lounge and meeting space for students.  We hope that in
the future we may be able to offer this space more frequently as a meeting space for
organizations and events. 

5. Will I still be able to see my advisor?  
 Yes.  Staff who previously did advising as part of OMAS will be available to assist students with advising issues.  In addition, all staff involved with the Center will be able to provide support and advising.  

6. Are the OMAS retreat, Diversity Excellence Scholarships (DES) and graduation being
eliminated?  
No.  We recognize the importance and value of these programs.  We hope to expand the
opportunities for student leadership and institutional support.  We hope interested students
will be a part of these initiatives, through planning and implementation. 

7. I have heard that other programs will be eliminated.  Is that true?
 The leadership team is making a full review of all the services provided to students.  In the near future input will be sought through a survey and follow up meetings focusing on the students who have utilized the programs in the past, and those who may utilize it in the
future to ensure that resources to serve undergraduate and graduate students are allocated to the most effective and desired programs and services.  The survey link will be available on numerous websites including the Office of the Dean of Students and the Office of
Institutional Equity and Diversity.  Fliers will be distributed across campus with the web link to all student unions, the MCC, and academic departments.  

For more information please contact 
Robin Holmes
vpdivers@uoregon.edu
Audrey Cramer
cramer@uoregon.edu
Jane Irungu
jirungu@uoregon.edu
Chicora Martin
chicora@uoregon.edu  

Reminder
Please come to the open forum scheduled for November 3, 2011 at noon in the Fir Room for an opportunity to get your questions answered and hear more about new opportunities.

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