Wednesday, February 29, 2012

RAPPORT Meeting: Reel Bad Arabs

Join RAPPORT for our final open meeting of winter 2012 quarter on Monday, March 5th from 6-8pm!

The meeting will be held in the 6th floor open space in Steger Student Life Center, next to the RAPP office.

We will be watching and discussing a film called Reel Bad Arabs: How Hollywood Vilifies a People about the Hollywood depiction of Arabs in film throughout history.

This is an open meeting, so all are welcome.  Popcorn will be provided!!


Ilyasah Shabazz Presents "Malcolm X: The Life, The Legacy, The Philosophy" - Mar 1st!

Malcolm X: The Life, The Legacy, The Philosophy

On March 1st, 2012, at 7PM The Muslim Student Association will be bringing Ilyasah Shabazz (the daughter of Malcolm X) to The University of Cincinnati's Zimmer Auditorium in Zimmer Hall to deliver a powerful speech on the Life, Legacy, and Philosophy of the late leader Malcolm X. 

This event will begin with a short history of Malcolm X, the true Humanitarian Message behind his philosophy, and how the legacy of his message still applies today. 

Ms. Shabazz will then talk about her world travel, the drive behind her fight for the betterment of our global village, and what it will take for University of Cincinnati Students to become world leaders like herself. This address will then be specified towards the African American Students in celebration of the African American History Month then the female students in the Audience in celebration of March as Woman's History Month.

Volunteers Needed for RAPP Working Group on Five-Day Racial Justice Intensive

In 2012-13, not only will the University of Cincinnatitransition to semesters but RAPP will transition the way in which we offer intensive engagement.  This email will provide a very brief overview of that; its primary intent is seeking out a group of individuals who are interested in helping RAPP make this transition a successful one.

The Big Change
Since 2008, RAPP has run two concurrent groups of approximately 35 students through our core social justice education curriculum.  This endeavor has been a challenging and rewarding attempt at building a critical mass of inclusive leaders and social  change agents at the university. 

This model, in the big picture, has proven unsustainable with current resources as well as around student engagement.  In response to this and other identified community needs, RAPP will transition away from the two concurrent group model. 

Instead, RAPP will offer two different social justice intensives in 2012-13:

  • One group of 35 in the 9-month program
  • One five-day racial justice intensive in mid August

RAPP staff as well as the office of Student Activities &Leadership Development is excited to try out this new structure and looking forward to the positive benefits it will bring to our campus. 

Help Needed
In order to practice the mission of RAPP, we need to include many voices in the process of planning the transition.  In particular, we are looking to build a working group of eight to sixteen members that will guide this transition process.

Ideally, this working group will include current students, Student Life staff, faculty, and other interested community members.  Its composition will also reflect the diverse community of RAPP and within which RAPP operates.

The Working Group’s Process
Over approximately eight hours, the working group will tackle the following tasks:

  • Review RAPP’s history and critical foundations
  • Benchmark similar inclusive leadership & racial justice intensives
  • Establish the general framework for the intensive, including:
    • The big idea/purpose of the intensive (similar to goals & objectives)
    • How to promote the intensive (including name and visual identity)
    •  The process for accepting/selecting participants
  • Refresh the RAPP recruitment process to address:
    • Clarifying & communicating the differences between the 5-day intensive and the 9-month intensive
    • Revising the recruitment process to ensure selection of highly-committed members for the 9-month intensive
Ideally, this will be done through three two-hour meetings during March and a fourth meeting two-thirds of the way through spring quarter.  A meal or refreshments will be provided at all working group meetings.

Get Involved!
If you are interested in participating in this working group and helping guide RAPP through this important transition, please contact Rebecca at or 513.556.6119 as soon as possible.  I am hoping to set up our first meeting some time between March 7th and 14th.

Please also feel free to share this call for support with people you think may be beneficial to this endeavor.

Space Still Available in Summer Study Abroad in France, Japan, and Israel/Jordan!

Summer Study in France, Japan or Israel/Jordan this summer!

3-week Summer Immersion Program in France!
Discover the French city of Caen from past to present, June 8 – July 1, 2012. This study abroad incorporates language study with experiential learning. It is a creative project involving the study of French language, history, art, and culture, activities in Caen, day-trips in Normandy, and two days in Paris. It is a valuable experience open to any student of any discipline, beginner to advance, interested in experiencing and learning more about France and its rich culture and history. (Application and deposit deadline has been extended to Feb 29, 2012 – Contact Dr. Jézéquel at or Bonnie Richardson at

“Summer Study Abroad: Japan”: June 25-July 5 or July 16-26
This study abroad program is open to any UC student with a genuine interest in Japan, its exciting history, art and culture, traditions, and language. This 3 credit course is offered in the summer 2012 quarter and will provide a first-hand introduction to authentic Japanese history, art, culture, food, and religion. While staying in both western hotels and Japanese ryokans (traditional Japanese inns, you will use the metro to visit the   many shrines and temples, sample noodles and sushi and many other foods of Japan, and see and experience what you have only heard and read about in the classroom.
Interested? Contact Bonnie Richardson at UC International Programs (

“Ancient and Modern Encounters in Israel & Jordan”: June 17-July11 (Dates subject to slight adjustment)
This three-week travel/study course through Israel and Jordan is for all students interested in exploring the rich heritage, diverse peoples, and beautifully varied landscape of the Middle East.  Participants will spend time hiking and touring through places as ancient as the city of David and modern metropolises such as Tel Aviv and Amman.  The trip will be led by Professor Matthew Kraus of UC’s department of Judaic Studies.  Students will earn 3 credits.  The trip has no language requirement, just a hunger for adventure and an openness to experience new places and peoples. 
Interested? Contact Bonnie Richardson at UC International Programs (

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

New Student Group: Student Ambassadors for Service Learning!

I wanted to share a bit of good news on this sunny and windy Friday.

In large part due to the incredible energy created around the Division of Professional Practice's Career Connections Event last week, UC's Student Activity Board has moved to approve the new Student Ambassadors for Service Learning Group!  

A special thank you goes to Yazmin Alfonso, Jennifer Pritchett, and Lilianne Kinne for supporting the information booth during Career Connections and for taking on the challenge of creating, for the first time in the history of the university, a student group focused on Service Learning and Civic Engagement.  Well done ladies!

UC in the News: "The India Question" in Inside Higher Education

From Inside Higher Ed via UC News:
The India Question
February 22, 2012 - 3:00am
WASHINGTON --- A booming middle class, shortage of local university spots and ready supply of talented English speakers have long made India a favorite recruiting target of American colleges.
The billion-person subcontinent sends more students to the United States than any other country except China, and American institutions are looking to expand their presence in India. But many colleges are still trying to perfect their approach to recruiting Indian students, particularly undergraduates.

A new survey of 83 college officials discussed Tuesday at the Association of International Education Administrators conference reveals widespread interest in growing and maintaining Indian partnerships, while also hinting at frustration with some aspects of their interactions in the country. But interest in India seems high -- there were three sessions on the nation at the AIEA meeting on Tuesday.
Administrators at the University of Cincinnati and Indiana University-Purdue University at Indianapolis were among those sharing their efforts to increase their Indian populations.
At Cincinnati, 535 of the 571 Indian students on campus are graduate students. Jonathan Weller, the college’s director of international admissions, said Cincinnati works with six agents at 100 offices in India to recruit students and has a full-time university employee stationed there. Admittedly late to the international recruitment game, Cincinnati is looking to build its name in “focus countries” like India. (Cincinnati also has two country coordinators in China and one in Vietnam.)
Cincinnati’s effort in India included the creation of two full scholarships, covering everything from tuition to airfare, awarded to young women from rural India last fall. Those students drew so much media attention in India that they were recognized by the customs officer at the airport and then again on the plane ride across the ocean.
One of those students was Anjani Lahane, a computer science major who in India had to walk 90 minutes each way to school – a task made even more onerous by monsoon season.
But with only two scholarships to hand out every four years, that program isn’t enough to make a major dent in the gap between Cincinnati’s undergraduate and graduate populations from India. Despite a growing economy and population, many Indians aren’t willing or able to splurge on an undergraduate education at an American college. And American colleges, especially public institutions in budget atrophy, can only offer so much in financial aid as they struggle to meet the needs of those at home.
“India is still a pretty price-sensitive market on the undergraduate level,” Weller said. “We have to deal with the reality, which is that India is a very graduate-oriented market.”
At IUPUI, Sara Kurtz Allaei has encountered a similar trend. As an assistant dean and international enrollment director, she’s seen the college's Indian student body grow to about 250. Of those, she said, about 90 percent are grad students.
Both IUPUI and Cincinnati have subsidized faculty travel to India for those willing to meet with prospective students. Often those faculty members are Indian and traveling home anyway. The colleges are also looking to connect with alumni living in India who might be willing to help in recruitment.
The ambitions and frustrations of IUPUI and Cincinnati appear to be common among the 83 AIEA members from around the world who replied to a recent survey about their institution's presence in India. Of those colleges, about two-thirds were public and 90 percent were in the United States. Forty-five percent had more than 100 Indian students, and about a quarter had more than 250. Many of the colleges were large, with about a quarter having at least 30,000 students and two-thirds having more than 10,000.
Some of the survey’s findings:
• 86 percent hoped to increase their presence in India in the next three years.
• Only a few colleges had or were interested in having a branch campus in India.
• 46 percent of colleges with an operational presence in India rated their engagement to be good.
• While 85 percent of colleges had study abroad programs in India, only 20 percent said that engagement was good.
Those findings underscore the need for colleges without an international brand name to carve out a niche in a vast but potentially fruitful network of Indian students, Tuesday’s speakers said. That often leads to debates about whether to hire recruiting agents – Cincinnati does but IUPUI does not – and how often to send campus officials to the targeted countries.
Swaraj Nandan works for KIC UnivAssist, which helps American colleges expand their presence in India. He said the initial work in recruiting a base of Indian students can pay off with a self-perpetuating flow.
“Indian students, like everyone else, tend to travel in groups,” Nandan said. “Once you have that good number, they’re going to come by themselves.”
Read more:
Inside Higher Ed 

Monday, February 27, 2012

Expert Panel on "Education & Economy" at the Economic Center's 2012 Annual Awards Luncheon - Mar 22nd!

From UC News:

Expert Panel on 'Education and Economy' at the Economics Center's 2012 Annual Awards Luncheon

On March 22, the Economics Center will recognize community leaders and discuss important topics on education and the economy.

Date: 2/23/2012 12:00:00 AM
By: Jaclyn Smith
Phone: (513) 556-2948

UC ingot   Panelists: Myron (Mike) Ullman, III, Executive Chairman, J.C. Penney Terence L. Horan, President, CEO, HORAN David M. Szymanski, Dean, University of Cincinnati College of Business Robin White, Ph.D., President, Great Oaks The Economics Center will hold its 5th Annual Awards Luncheon on Thursday, March 22, 2012 at the Hyatt Regency in downtown Cincinnati at 12:00 p.m. 

Mr. Myron (Mike) Ullman, Executive Chairman of J.C. Penney will answer questions from a panel of community leaders discussing education and our local economy. Over 500 business leaders and educators will join the Economics Center in recognizing community leaders for accomplishments throughout the year, specifically highlighting successes in economic and financial education. 

Each year, at the Awards Luncheon the Economics Center acknowledges educators that have excelled in both economics and financial education. Teachers are recognized for their outstanding commitment to their students. These districts and their teachers have embraced our mission and are considered the best and brightest in the community. The Valentine Leadership Award is presented to a elementary principal who has demonstrated leadership, excellent program implementation, creativity and advocacy for the Center’s elementary initiative. A long time supporter of this program, Ms. Margaret Valentine, Vice President of Valentine Research, has generously supported the Student Enterprise Program (StEP) and she will present this award. Ohio National Financial Services, a contributor to the Ohio Stock Market Game, which the Center coordinates statewide, awards the winning student team. This game teaches important 21st Century skills, such as critical-thinking, decision-making and research, in addition to the basics of saving and investing. 

The Community Service award recognizes an organization that has important local and economic impact and is an organization that has a deep commitment to incorporating economic research into its business practices. For over 34 years, the Economics Center has been the leading non-profit organization in Greater Cincinnati for economic information and resources. The Center broadens teachers’ knowledge about economics and finance through professional development seminars and empowers these teachers to introduce these concepts to students in the K-12 classroom. The Center also informs government and business leaders with economic research analyses that guide economic development decisions for more vibrant and economically healthy communities. 

This event promises to be informative and empowering. Individuals interested in attending this event and supporting the Economics Center may register online at For more information about the event, contact Jaclyn Smith at 513.556.2986 or email 

As a thought leader in the community, the Economics Center provides the knowledge building blocks for a stronger economy through education and research. Our student-based programs, interactive tools and professional development improve the financial literacy of school children and young adults. Our research and consulting empowers business and civic leaders to make informed policy and economic development decisions.

UC Blue Ash Service-Learning Student Expo - Apr 19th!

This is a reminder email that for the first time in its history, UC Blue Ash will hold a Service-Learning Student Expo to exhibit our students’ service-learning community work. The expo will be on April 19th 2012, in the Muntz lobby and corridors. 

Although many of our students are working in the community as part of a service-learning course or course component, we seldom know, college-wide, what they have been doing. This expo will provide an opportunity for students to see what their peers are accomplishing in the community. Additionally, it will allow faculty and staff to inform ourselves about our students’ work.

As you wrap up your service-learning course in the winter quarter please remind your students of this opportunity for them to present their work. As you begin preparing for the spring quarter, please consider including a poster presentation assignment as part of the course requirements and please encourage your students to present at the expo.

We will provide certificates of participation for students presenting and we are looking in to a prize for “best poster.”

We’re excited to offer this venue to display students’ service-learning community work. We hope that you see this as an opportunity to support your students in promoting their work to other students, faculty, staff, and community partners.

(For the purposes of this expo, we are using the UC definition of service-learning, ” Service Learning (SL) is a specially designed learning experience in which students combine reflection with structured participation in community-based projects to achieve specified learning outcomes as part of an academic course and/or program requirement. By participating in academic community partnerships at the local, national, or international level, students gain a richer mastery of course content, enhance their sense of civic responsibility, and ultimately develop a more integrated approach to understanding the relationship between theory, practice, ideas, values, and community.”

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Racist Teen Videos

Santaluces High School In Florida On Alert After 2 Teens Post Racist Video

Racist Students 2
The Huffington Post   First Posted: 02/21/2012 6:30 pm Updated: 02/23/2012 7:09 pm

School officials at Santaluces High School in Lantana, Fla., are on alert, WPEC-TV reports, after two white female students posted the racist video about black students at the school, poking fun at the way they talk, and those that wear "weave" hair extensions.

At one point in the post, one of the girls says, "Guys, if you're watching this video now, and you have a weave, and you're black, please be offended -- because we're making fun of you."
They end the video with, "Don't post this on Facebook because all our friends are black!" And giggle and flash peace signs while saying, "peace and love!" Santaluces High is 27 percent white, 35 percent black and 33 percent Hispanic, The Palm Beach Post reports.

According to WPTV, the school district is aware of the video but would not go into detail about what action will be taken against the students.
"Appropriate action will be taken according to district policy," the district said in a prepared statement, according to WPTV. "Racist comments are unacceptable and have no place in our school district.”
The Palm Beach Post reports that the school is stepping up its security after the girls' video went viral.

In the video, the teens comment on how students start "turning black" as soon as they enter the school -- saying you "catch the disease."
School Police Chief Jim Kelly told The Palm Beach Post that since social media is so new, the district doesn't know how to approach the situation, but will look into the issue and determine the proper policy.

Last week, eight police officers were brought to Gainesville High School -- where the students from the first viral video attend -- in light of death threats those girls were receiving in response to their videos. The videos included comments like, "You can understand what we are saying, our accents, we use actual words. Black people do not."
The Gainesville students and their parents have since issued public apologies.

Should schools get involved in cases like this? Technically the girls didn't misbehave at school, so how should the school handle the problem?

We often think of racist individuals as coming from a backgrounds with little to no exposure to diversity. However, these girls apparently attend a high school that is very diverse. Why do you think these girls developed these attitudes when they are exposed to people from a variety of racial backgrounds every day?

What is the proper response of society as a whole to these types of incidents. As mentioned in the article, a recent, similar case resulted in death threats against the girls who made the video. Threats and violence are likely to just spread more hate. With that said, should these girls be shamed? Should we reach out to them kindly and try to educate them? Share your thoughts.

Omicron Delta Kappa Seeking Applications for Sophomore of the Year Award - Due Mar 16th!

The Omicron Delta Kappa Society is the national leadership honor society for college students, faculty, staff, administrators, and alumni that recognizes and encourages superior scholarship, leadership, and exemplary character.  Membership in ODK is a mark of the highest distinction and honor.  

Each year, ODK chooses one Sophomore student who has made extraordinary contributions to the University of Cincinnati and/or to its community through his or her academic and extracurricular activities.  To be considered for the award, nominees must have a 3.000 cumulative GPA or higher and fill out the following application:

After you have completed an application, please submit a hard copy to the Omicron Delta Kappa mailbox in Steger Student Life Center by Friday, March 16, 2012 no later than 5:00 PM. If you have any questions concerning the application process, please feel free to contact me at

Saturday, February 25, 2012

"Experiencing Ecuador!" Presentation about Health Promotion Study Abroad Experience - Feb 28th!

Presentation:  Experiencing Ecuador!  Tues. Feb 28 (11 am-noon) Procter Hall

Join the College of Nursing for a presentation regarding a two week immersion experience of health promotion and health education in Ecuador.

Tuesday, Feb. 28 (11 am – noon) in 276 Procter Hall
Please RSVP in advance of presentation @

Sustainability Events for the Rest of Spring Quarter - Feb 27th-March 3rd

Monday, February 27: Film Series – Carbon Nation, 7pm, MainStreet Cinema
            This film is about climate change solutions.  It is a compelling and relevant film that illustrates how solutions to climate change also address other social, economic, and national security issues.  Carbon Nation is an optimistic, solutions-based, non-preachy, non-partisan film that shows tackling climate change boosts the economy, increases national and energy security, and promotes health and a clean environment.  More information here.
Wednesday, February 29: Lecture Series –  Energy: The Triple Bottom Line, 4pm, Zimmer 400
                This panel discussion will be the first of three examining Energy, Power, and Ohio.  John Stowell, Vice President, Environmental Health & Safety Policy, Duke Energy; Stephen Melink, Founder & President, Melink Corporation; Chris Allwein, Partner, Williams, Allwein & Moser, LLC; and Steven Lesser, commissioner of the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio will be discussing energy use, power sources, and the future of energy in Ohio.  Refreshments and time for questions from the audience will be provided.

Thursday, March 1: Workshop Series – Energy Efficiency for Dorms and Apartments, 5pm, Bike Kitchen
            Think don’t need to worry about energy conservation because you live in a dorm or apartment?  Just because you can’t install more insulation in the attic, doesn’t mean there aren’t plenty of steps you can take to become more energy efficient.  Susan Vonderhaar, an award winning environmental educator, will be presenting this workshop on practical tips for people living in dormitories and apartments to reduce their energy consumption and carbon footprint. 

Saturday, March 3: Tour – Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Gardens’ Sustainability Projects, 12pm, Meet at CRC Circle
                This engaging tour will give participants a behind-the-scenes look at what makes the Cincinnati Zoo ‘America’s Greenest Zoo’!  Sustainability Coordinator, Sophia Cifuentes, will guide us through the many on-site sustainability projects, from solar panels to permeable pavement to composting ‘zoo doo.’  Space is limited and RSVP to is required!  We will meet at 12pm at the CRC Circle and take a short walk to the zoo for our 1pm tour.  The tour is free, but if participants want to stay afterward to explore the zoo paid admission is required. 

Friday, February 24, 2012

Beyond the Circle: UC Forward

I was reminded today of this UC Forward video from last spring.   It was designed to introduce the campus to the UC Forward program, which is a teaching and learning initiative at the university.

Notice RAPP XXV member Mahsino Blamoh!

Discussion Prompts:

  • What key messages do you find in the video?  How does it frame this form of education in contrast with other or more traditional forms?
  • From whom do you hear messages?  Are there other voices you'd like to hear from?
  • To what degree were you familiar with UC Forward before this?  What else would you like to know about it?

Diversity Funding Grants Available through SALD

Diversity Funding Grant Proposal
The mission of Student Activities & Leadership Development supports the mission of the University of Cincinnati by promoting and guiding purposeful student engagement, fostering a sense of community, and providing opportunities of student growth and leadership development.  

The office aspires to create an inclusive environment that celebrates diversity and enhances students’ ability to become global citizens.  Within this framework, SALD is accepting program proposals up to $2,000 from registered student organizations that support the institution’s diversity initiative.  

To apply for this grant please go

RAPP Community Connections

It's been a quiet week here on the RAPP blog, but not for lack of activity on campus.  Rather, RAPP and its staff/blog team have been a busy bunch.  As a chance to highlight some of the work we do, here's an overview of the community connections we've been involved in this week:

  • Monday & Wednesday morning through early afternoon, RAPP partnered with the LGBTQ Center to provide campus diversity workshops to first year students in the Carl H. Lindner College of Business. Social Justice League member Bobby Filbin, LGBTQ Center graduate assistant B Carbonara, and Rebecca connected with almost 350 students in eight fifty-minute workshops.
  • Monday evening, RAPP Public Ally Marjorie Bledsoe and RAPPORT Intern DeVorah YisraEL facilitated a RAPPORT workshop on multiple intelligences & planning inclusive learning experiences.  A dozen people came out to explore our ways of learning and sharing knowledge as well as how to include all learners in educational experiences.
  • On Tuesday, Rebecca connected with one of the nearly one hundred First Year Experience Learning Communities for an outreach session.  Each year we work with at least a dozen first year learning communities, exploring campus diversity, self-awareness, and intercultural communication.
  • Tuesday evening, we hosted one of our newer activities for RAPP XXVII Tuesday - between session conference calls.  The group asked to try phone check-ins between meetings, so we've set up multiple conference call sessions this quarter.
  • In exploration of expanding our partnership with Emerging Ethnic Leaders, Rebecca worked with the advisor for EEL to begin sketching out a formal relationship between our programs for some exciting developments RAPP has in the works (stay tuned here for how to be involved in that!).
  • International Education Week is a university-wide program spearheaded by UC International.  SALD participates annually in this great series of events that help our students build global citizenship.  RAPP staff and other SALD staff participated in the kick-off planning meeting for the fall 2012 program.
  • As a Student Life staff member and UC alumna herself, Rebecca commits time to supporting some of our major undergraduate scholarships.  This week involved much work with the selection process for the Darwin T. Turner Scholars Program as well as preparing and presenting a Student Life session for competitors in the Cincinnatus Scholarship Program.  The latter program involved highlighting Student Life's countless connections with the University Honors Program.  RAPP XXV member Alyssa Roberts helped present about her leadership journey, including RAPP's contribution to it.
  • Our campus community has experienced several racial incidents lately, some public and some not.  While RAPP no longer coordinates the Racial Incident Team (which we did in the late 1980s through mid-1990s), our staff do provide listening ears and responsive educational programming.  Work in this area has been underway this week, as well.
All of this came directly after Rebecca's return from the Social Justice Training Institute 2 & Celebration in Fort Lauderdale, Florida and Marjorie's return from 2012 Tri-State Diversity Conference: Diverse Communities - Common Unity in the Cincinnati Airport Marriot.

Thanks to all the folks who keep RAPP hopping and deeply connected with our community in this way!

Social Justice League member Bobby Filbin helped present to nearly 350 College of Business students this week!

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Lear Green Speaks: Unpacking the Underground Railroad - Feb 27th!

Lear Green Speaks: Unpacking the Underground Railroad
Celebrating Black History Month! 
“Lear Green Speaks: Unpacking the Underground Railroad” 

Date: Monday, February 27, 2012
Time: 6PM-8PM
Location: Zimmer Hall Auditorium

Vicie Rolling will present her touching and poignant original interpretation and portrayal of the life of Lear Green, a former slave, who lived the last three years of her life in freedom. The story goes that Ms. Green escaped from slavery, with the help of her future mother-in-law, in a trunk on a ship. Her fiancé and his mother were free persons of color from New York State and after eighteen hours in the trunk she arrived in Philadelphia where she stayed briefly. She arrived in Elmira via the Underground Railroad. Very few people know her story or she lived under the name Elizabeth Adams.

Come join the Office of Ethnic Programs and Services, the African American Cultural and Resource Center, Women’s Center, Department of Africana Studies, the LGBTQ Center, the United Black Student Association, the Counseling Center, Student Government, and Black Arts Collaborative to celebrate the life of Lear Green! 

Monday, February 20, 2012

Cincy Story Mural: The Cincinnati Neighborhood Story Mural Project

From Public Allies Cincinnati:

The Cincy Story Mural is a new project dedicated to celebrating the greater Cincinnati area’s people and cultures through collaborative art and storytelling.

Cincinnati is often referred to as “a big city with a small-town feel” for the many overlapping connections that exist within the community. We hope this project will work to strengthen existing relationships and facilitate new ones in a sustainable, lasting way.

During the project, personal photographs, stories, and videos will be collected that reveal the narratives of the people, places, experiences of each of Cincinnati’s communities. And, in the Spring of 2012, a map of our city will be transformed into a mural and installed in locations throughout Cincinnati for everyone to enjoy. Because our dynamic communities are always growing, an interactive online version will be created with photos, videos, and stories added by you, your families, and your friends.

With 52 unique neighborhoods and more than a dozen independent municipalities, there is a lot of work to do before this dream becomes a reality. Please join the effort -- Your ideas, your memories, your stories, and your passion are what this project is made of. Help tell the story of our city through the eyes of the people who live here and call Cincinnati home.

Oakley and Madisonville residents gather for the first photo harvest

Like us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter, and sign-up for our e-mail newsletter.

Learn more about the people behind Cincy Story Mural.
Get the full scoop about our upcoming Photo Harvest events and how to contribute.

Send us questions and feedback to

UC LGBTQ Center "Coming Out" Open House - Feb 23rd!

From the UC LGBTQ Center:

You are cordially invited to our "Coming Out" Open House!

The UC LGBTQ Center will host a "Coming Out" Open House in the new space located in 565 Steger.  See the new space, hear about the history of the LGBTQ Center, and find out more about the resources and programs available!

Open House will be held February 23rd from 5-7PM in 565 Steger.  Program will start at 5:30PM.

For more information, please contact B Carbonara at

To RSVP, please send confirmation to

Gender-Neutral Bathrooms Update for UC Campus

From the UC Planning, Design & Construction Department and the UC Women's Center (which has been working hard on this important issue):

The following bathrooms will have new signs placed indicating they are unisex type bathrooms to be used for one person…The signage should be installed over the next few weeks. The Steger 553 bathroom is in the design phase, so it will be at least six or eight months til this room is available.

Aronoff/DAAP 6420
Aronoff/DAAP 6418
Teachers 249
Teachers 122C
Blegen 207A
Blegen 410C
Blegen 605A
Steger 553 (to be converted to a bathroom- still at least six or eight months from being available)
Steger 630D
Steger 630I
Langsam 546
Lindner 114
Lindner 337
Lindner 602
Tangeman 364A
Tangeman 364B
Rec Center 0222A, 0222B, 0222C, 0222D
French West 2101
French West 2231
Old Chem 502
Market Pointe 101C

MSB 4187 (not available til building renovation is complete)
MSB 4188 (not available til building renovation is complete)
MSB 7017
MSB 7018
French East 220
Kettering G20, G24, G33, 406

Building B 345
Building C 221
Building F 114
Building F 210

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Bi-Okoto Performance - Feb 21st!

Join us in celebration of both Black History Month and the ArtsWave campaign. Bi-Okoto is one of the many smaller arts organizations supported in part by ArtsWave. The performance is free and open to all of the University community. 

Tuesday, February 21
11:45 a.m. to 1 p.m.
MainStreet Cinema, TUC

Sponsors: Cincinnati ArtsWave; Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs and Services and Chief Diversity Officer; UC Women’s Center; Ethnic Programs and Services (EPS); and Resident Education and Development (RED).

Saturday, February 18, 2012

World Gone Wrong: Coping with Capitalism

            Recent reports have revealed the working conditions in factories that manufacture Apple products. These reports in particular irk people because they reveal an uncomfortable truth about the way the world works. It reminds us all that living in a prosperous nation means relying on other nations to achieve wealth. No, I don’t hate America or Western culture (although I’d like to see certain aspects of it change). And yes, I still buy things (the computer I’m typing this on was most likely made in a Chinese factory). However, our consumer culture has gone too far. Lets face it, we didn’t get to a 14 trillion dollar GDP without getting blood on our hands. Knowing that I benefit from slave labor weighs on my conscious. I’m sure this is the case for many people, but because its “shared guilt” it doesn’t make people lose sleep at night. I think the feeling of powerlessness eases peoples minds. The fact that you aren’t the CEO of some company calling the shots, you aren’t the one actually saying “lets use Chinese slave labor” makes people feel like they shouldn’t be the ones to blame.
            But what am I going to do? Its almost impossible to live in this country and not have anything that was made in a sweatshop. After all, even if I choose to not use Apple products, other tech companies aren’t much better. It isn’t just tech companies either, major clothing companies and makers of other products also rely on sweatshop factories to provide for as many consumers as possible. In addition to the human cost of our culture, I also feel guilt about the environmental and agricultural problems that our system of consumption causes. Again though, its not really possible for anyone who wants to be a member of our society to completely distance themselves from these things. I’m not going to live “off the grid”. I don’t have the time to boycott every single thing that is made in a sweatshop. Its as if the act of simply continuing to exist is counter to my own morals.
            What I’ve come to terms with is that there are still things I can do. If I have to use computers made by workers who are exploited, let me use that same computer to bring awareness to their plight. If I have to buy shoes made in sweatshops, let me use those shoes to walk and spread the word about the injustice the makers of the shoes face. We can use the products to emancipate the people that make them, that way the oppression they face won’t be in vain.

2/20 EDIT: Foxconn, a Chinese manufacturing company who makes products for several tech companies, Apple, Hewllet-Packard and Dell has announced that it will pay its workers better wages and treat them better. If you needed any more evidence that spreading the word on injustices can change them, this is it.

Friday, February 17, 2012

GLSEN Prom 2012: Free to Be ME - May 5th!

From GLSEN Greater Cincinnati:
Prom 2012
Prom Logo
Planning is already well underway for this year's Prom! Like last year, Prom 2012 is two events in one. With a chaperoned space for youth and a separate space for adults with dinner and a bar, Prom is for everyone. Young or old, gay or straight, come on out for a second chance at Prom. We promise it's more fun than the average high school event!

Prom is May 5th from 7pm to midnight at the Freedom Center downtown. Adult tickets are $65 in advance and include dinner and two drinks. Adult tickets as well as our Friend of Prom sponsors allow us to make Prom free for everyone under 21.

If you haven't reserved tickets yet, you can do so at our website. We ask that youth also makereservations in advance.   

Thursday, February 16, 2012

CCM's Annual PRISM Concert: A Musical Trip Around the World - Feb 19th!

From UC News:
CCM’s Annual PRISM Concert: A Musical Trip Around the World

College-Conservatory of Music ensembles and guests perform 60 minutes of non-stop world music on Sunday, Feb. 19.

Date: 2/9/2012 12:00:00 AM
By: Lillian Matchett
Other Contact: Curt Whitacre
Other Contact Phone: (513) 556-2683
Photos By: UC Photographic Services

UC ingot   
The CCM Wind Symphony.

The University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music (CCM) presents the 15th annual Prism Concert on Sunday, Feb. 19, at 3 p.m. in Corbett Auditorium. This concert event features the CCM Wind Symphony, Wind Ensemble, Jazz Lab Band, Percussion Ensemble and special guests performing an eclectic mix of music from around the world. Glenn D. Price and Terence Milligan conduct.

During this seamless presentation of non-stop music performed from various locations within the auditorium, the sounds of Russia, Japan, Tunisia, Mexico and many other countries will surround the audience from all angles.

In addition to CCM ensembles, the world-music-themed concert also features several guest acts, including the UC Himalayan Ensemble, Carrie Wang on Chinese Pipa, the Ella Fitzgerald Ensemble and Jim Feist on traditional Indian classical tabla.

Performance Time:
3 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 19

Corbett Auditorium, CCM Village

Tickets & Information
Tickets to “Prism XV” are $12 general admission, $5 non-UC students, UC students FREE. Parking is available in the CCM Garage (at the base of Corry Boulevard off of Jefferson Avenue) and additional garages throughout the UC campus. For complete ticket and parking information, or call the CCM Box Office at 513-556-4183.

CCM Season Presenting Sponsor: The Otto M. Budig Family Foundation

Author Amy Waldman Visits Cincinnati, UC - Mar 5th!

From Student Affairs & Services:

Please mark your calendars for the visit of Amy Waldman to UC.  Amy’s book “The Submission” is the “On the Same Page” community reading selection by the Public Library of Cincinnati and HamiltonCounty.  

We are pleased to join with them in offering the opportunity to hear Amy on Monday, March 5 at 7 p.m. in the TUC Theater.  

For more information on the book and Amy, there was an excellent article in theCincinnati Enquirer.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

UC Community Called on to Offer Aid as Students Prepare for a Spring Break Trip to Haiti

From UC News:
UC Community Called On to Offer Aid as Students Prepare for a Spring Break Trip to Haiti

Collections begin next week for an over-the-counter medicine drive to provide much-needed aid to a clinic in Haiti.

Date: 2/10/2012 12:00:00 AM
By: Dawn Fuller
Phone: (513) 556-1823
Photos By: Provided

UC ingot   Preparation is already underway for a University of Cincinnati service-learning trip to Haiti over spring break, as coordinators organize an over-the-counter medicine drive to aid a clinic in the earthquake-ravaged country. Items such as gauze, child and adult pain medication, cough and cold medicine, antacids, antibacterial ointments and just about anything else in the average person’s medicine cabinet will be collected for the trip, which will depart Cincinnati for Haiti on March 16 and return on March 24.
Cheri Westmoreland in Haiti

Beginning on Monday, Feb. 13, collections for the over-the-counter medicines will be in place at the McNair Scholars Office in Room 700, Swift Hall, as well as on the second floor of University Pavilion. Beginning from noon-2 p.m., Wednesday, Feb. 15, collections will be in the breezeway of the Campus Recreation Center on every Wednesday during that time window through March 7.

This will be the second Africana Studies service learning course to travel to Haiti over spring break. The trip to further study Haitian culture and society will be led by instructor Cheri Westmoreland, director of the McNair Scholars Program, and Jana Braziel, a professor of English and Comparative Literature.

UC defines service learning as an experience in which students combine reflection with structured participation in community-based projects to achieve specific learning goals. This participation at the local, national or international level helps students gain a richer mastery of their course content, enhances their sense of civic responsibility and helps students connect classroom theory with practice, ideas, values and the community. Over the previous academic year, 52 different UC academic departments offered 182 service-learning courses.

Westmoreland says 26 UC students will be taking part in four service-learning projects in Haiti, including:
  • Developing a sports program for hundreds of children housed in an orphanage
  • Creating an arts-and-crafts project for the children
  • Leading a self-esteem program for teenagers
  • Supporting a program aimed at empowering women.
Westmoreland says the students are also working on care bags to give to women at a birthing center at the clinic.

“These trips can be both overwhelming and rewarding,” Westmoreland says. “The preparation can be a little overwhelming. Once we arrive, it’s so rewarding to see the impact of our preparation, and the effect it has on the students.

“Students truly feel that they are changed by this trip,” says Westmoreland. “They become more sensitive to the need that there is in the world, and they develop a strong passion to want to help.”

For more information on over-the-counter drug collections or in-kind contributions for the trip, contact Westmoreland at 513-556-2880; email

Groundbreaking for the Cincinnati Streetcar - Feb 17th!

From Cincinnati Streetcar
Groundbreaking for the Cincinnati Streetcar
Friday, February 17, 2012
1:00pm until 2:00pm

City and project officials will gather in Over-the-Rhine to celebrate the official groundbreaking for the Cincinnati Streetcar project. They will be joined by Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood.

Events will take place inside the Memorial Hall lobby. There will be a short official groundbreaking ceremony outside on Elm Street.

Come out to celebrate this momentous day for Cincinnati. Celebrate the beginning of a comprehsive regional transit system. Celebrate the city's resurgent urban core. Celebrate the city you love.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Commentary: The Complex Simplicity of Black Male Success in College

From Diverse Issues in Higher Education:

Commentary: The Complex Simplicity of Black Male Success in College
by Ibram H. Rogers , February 13, 2012

The Center for the Study of Race and Equity in Education at the University of Pennsylvania recently released its inaugural publication. Titled “Black Male Student Success in Higher Education: A Report from the National Black Male College Achievement Study,” researchers, led by the center’s director, Dr. Shaun R. Harper, have attempted to reframe the spirited dialogue concerning the achievement of African-American males.

Thus far, the dialogue has been more like a critical monologue, a consistent indictment of Black masculinity, regular exchanges of confused Black gloom and male doom, a gushing river of what Harper terms “deficit-oriented questions.”

In an effort to move toward a more constructive dialogue, the report asked new, anti-deficit questions. “What resources are most effective in helping Black male achievers earn GPAs above 3.0 in a variety of majors, including STEM fields?” This is one of many questions that UPenn researchers asked 219 successful Black male college students at 42 colleges and universities in 20 states in their study to gauge how and why they have defied the odds, or rather lived up to the odds they set for themselves.

When I read through the key findings of the study, I was struck by the simplicity of the reasons these Black men offered as to why they have succeeded in college. I was struck by how much my story was in their words. I was struck by how their story, my story, could be the story of each Black male who has not proceeded to college.

The participants’ parents deemed college a “non-negotiable” expectation after high school, were involved in their schooling and “aggressively sought out educational resources to ensure their success.” I can certainly remember this from my parents.

They “almost always” had at least one influential teacher who inspired them to go to college. I did not have a teacher, but I had a Black male guidance counselor, Mr. Lawrence. (Like I did, most considered themselves “lucky” to have this support. “Many participants felt teachers [especially White women] were incapable of engaging meaningfully with more than one or a few Black male students at a time.”)

UC Lunar New Year 2012 Banquet - Feb 19th!

From UC Ethnic Programs & Services:
Lunar New Year 2012 Banquet
Sunday, February 19, 2012
TUC Great Hall

Come celebrate the 2012 Lunar New Year with dance, song, and BANQUET!! 

Singer and Songwriter: JENNY SUK (

Lion Dance
Blue Ash Shaolin Do
Dayton Japanese Taiko Drums
Chinese Traditional Dance and Song
Fashion Show

Sponsored By:
Office of Ethnic Programs and Services
Program Activities Council
Asian American Association
Society of Asian Scientists and Engineers
UC Student Government
Vietnamese Student Association
Delta Phi Lambda