Student Diversity Council Brings Awareness to Campus

By: Lane Fahey, Asst. News Editor

     One year ago, almost to the day, The Wall Street Journal released its first annual national college and university rankings. Despite edging out Wofford and Clemson as the highest ranked school in the state, Furman ranked an abysmal 940 in the country (or a 2.5/10) in school environment–a metric for judging student diversity and inclusion.

     Student Diversity Council is a council at Furman “to help centralize our multi-cultural and identity based student organizations and to give them some more support,” stated Associate Director of Student Activities for Diversity Engagement Deborah Allen.

     SDC is also used to “promote diversity inclusion and social justice at Furman but also in the Greenville community,” Allen said.

     “Our goal is to support all diverse organizations on campus in creating a safe environment, a learning opportunity, and pride on campus,” Secretary of SDC Kelsey Milian said via email. “SDC also hosts its own large events in creating events that often deal with issues occurring in politics, the natural environment, and social atmosphere today.”

     Seven organizations fall under SDC: the Hispanic Organization for Learning and Awareness, the Student League of Black Culture, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, the Association of Students Interested in Asia, the Furman University International Students Association, the Furman Pride Alliance and the Chinese Student Association.

     With a brand new office in Trone Student Center, SDC looks to spread awareness about each individual organization and their events on campus.

     “I think SDC is working to become more visible on campus… I think you’ll see more programming,” Allen said.

     These various organizations will also look to collaborate with organizations that don’t fall under SDC. To help reach towards these goals for the school year, SDC had their first retreat in Pigeon Forge, near Gatlinburg. This retreat touched on their overall mission, upcoming events, and how each organization can support each other.

     SDC’s next event will be “A Night With Elizabeth Acevedo- SPOKEN word!” on Sept. 26 at 6:30 pm in Burgiss Theater. For the smaller organizations involved with SDC,  HOLA is having month-long series for Hispanic Heritage Month from Sept.15 to Oct.15, which includes various CLP’s and cafe nights. The month will end with “Fiesta Hispanic” on Oct. 12 from 6:15 p.m. to 9 p.m. in the amphitheater.

The faces of SDC on their Tennessee retreat. Photo courtesy of SDC Facebook.
The faces of SDC on their Tennessee retreat. Photo courtesy of SDC Facebook.

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