Regional Winner
Month: August 2012


Diversity Program of the Month
Diversity Bracelets

School: Eastern Illinois University Region: GLACURH
Person in charge: Lawson Hall Council Nominator: Stephanie Gribbin

Target Population: 280 Time Needed to Organize: 1 Week
Number of People in Attendance: 80 Date(s) of Program: 8/22/12
Number of People Needed to Organize: 8 Cost of Program: Under $20
On-Campus Population: 4520 Chapter Size: 30

Origin of Program:

Lawson Hall is known for being very diverse on campus. With a lot of incoming freshmen, the hall council thought it would be a good idea to host a program that allowed all of the diverse students to feel welcome and get to know one another.

Word Count: 47

Please give a short description of the program:

For the Diversity Bracelets program hall council set up different stations which included a bowl of beads and a short description of what that bead represented. The program was explained and then residents received a piece of string with which to make a bracelet. At each station residents read the descriptions to see if that bead applied to them. If it did, they used that bead as a part of their bracelets. Each description was represented by a different color. For example, one might have put a blue bead on their bracelet if they "were close to a member of the LGBTQ community," or a green bead if they "knew someone who has fought against cancer." Other descriptions covered sexual assault, socioeconomic status, siblings and family life, and more. Afterwards, a debriefing session was held so residents could talk about their reactions to the program and share their stories. After the debriefing session, many students stayed to socialize and eat ice cream provided by hall council. The program was extremely successful.

Word Count: 172

Goals of the program:

One goal of this program were to bring the new and returning residents of Lawson Hall together. Another goal of this program was to make everyone feel welcome and accepted in the Lawson Hall environment. Finally, the program was meant to show residents that there is a lot of diversity in Lawson, and that they are not alone in their life experiences. The program met all of these goals and promoted hall unity.

Word Count: 74

Positive and lasting effects of the program:

During the debriefing session of this program residents were able to go into more detail about why they chose the beads that they did. Residents became very comfortable sharing stories about hardships as well as positive moments in their lives. Many of the Lawson residents comforted one another during the session and everyone was respectful, attentive, and empathetic to one another's stories. Some of the staff members participated in the debriefing and this helped residents feel more comfortable sharing stories themselves. Hall council facilitated the debriefing session when necessary. After the program, many of the residents had made new friends. Groups from this program can now be seen mingling in the hall together. Not only did the program meet all of its goals but it also helped residents make new friends and become aware of resources within the building and on campus if they need to talk. Further, the program allowed people of diverse backgrounds to learn more about one another and meet people like themselves.

Word Count: 167

Short evaluation of the program:

The program was extremely successful in meeting its goals and producing long-lasting, positive effects within Lawson. Hopefully it will help continue Lawson's positive reputation for being a welcoming, diverse residence hall.

Word Count: 32

How could this program be adapted to other campuses?

This program could be adapted to any campus seeking to highlight diversity or teach about diversity. Even in residence halls that aren't known for diverse populations a program like this could help facilitate a learning experience for residents who haven't had a lot of experience with diverse people. This is a great program for an entire residence hall, a floor, a registered student organization, or even a leadership workshop. The criteria for each bead is flexible and can be adapted to many purposes. The program definitely promotes bonding and empathy.

Word Count: 91

Date of entry into database: 2012-09-01 17:22:49

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