SCTCC Multicultural Center Now Open

President Cheek with students and key
November 12, 2021

SCTCC’s new Multicultural Center is now open!

On Wednesday, Nov. 10, the grand opening took place in its new location, Northway Building room 1-313, with Pres. Cheek, students, and the mayor of St. Cloud making remarks on the history and necessity of the Center for SCTCC. Vice President of Cultural Fluency, Equity, and Inclusion, Debra Leigh, emceed. The event was livestreamed from the Center.

“Human beings are social creatures, and we all have a fundamental motivation to be accepted into relationships with others and be part of social groups,” said SCTCC Pres. Cheek. “The need to feel a sense of belonging is something we all share. It is part of being human. The SCTCC Multicultural Center is our college’s recognition and acknowledgement of everyone’s need to belong. It is a clear indication, a shining signal, and tangible evidence that everyone is welcome at SCTCC.”

Minnesota State Chancellor Devinder Malhotra expressed his congratulations on the opening of the Multicultural Center, and St. Cloud Mayor Dave Kleis presented a proclamation that Nov. 10, 2021, is SCTCC Multicultural Day.

Students Miracle Moore, Edith Ojewale, and Nimo Farrah (pictured with Pres. Cheek, left-right) received a ceremonial key from Pres. Cheek to symbolize the official opening of the Center. The key was created by the SCTCC Carpentry and Mechanical Design programs.

Moore, the president of the SCTCC Senate President, commented, “I’m glad that the school finally has a place for students to be able to express themselves without rejection or backlash. This space gives students a chance to bridge the cultural gap that is sometimes ignored. This place will be a space for people to grow, to expand their minds and achieve things that they never thought would be possible.”

Those tuning in to the livestream were also treated to entertainment by Gabby Perez and Raul Perez, as they danced the Danza de los Viejitos, a traditional Mexican folk dance.

Director of Cultural Fluency, Equity, and Inclusion, Njeri Clement, led a Sands of Solidarity ceremony, and all those at the grand opening were invited to pour sand into vases to represent the interconnecting of SCTCC community’s shared values of compassion, inclusion, respect, and dignity.

The event wrapped up with an unveiling of a photo of faculty instrumental in the creation of the Multicultural Center: Khaldoun Ahmad, Sangeeta Jha, and Soheyl Missaghi.

The Multicultural Center at SCTCC is now open for students, faculty, and staff to have a space to celebrate and recognize differences and commonalities; explore identities; and recognize and honor heritage. Watch for events and programming coming out of the Center. The hours are Monday-Friday, 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m.

Kate Wallace