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Owens Community College celebrates Diversity Week, April 5-11

Owens Community College celebrates the importance of diversity and its identity in higher education, the workplace, and the community with a series of events and activities as part of the first-ever Diversity Week, April 5-11, 2008. The public is encouraged to join the campus community for guest-speakers, performances, and educational awareness programs.

All events and activities will occur on the College’s Toledo-area and Findlay-area campuses. Owens’ Toledo-area Campus is located on Oregon Road in Perrysburg Township, while the Findlay-area Campus is located on Bright Road in Findlay.


“Owens Community College is proud to celebrate diversity and the uniqueness of America through several events and activities that are designed to raise awareness about gender, ethnicity, language and culture,” said Betty Valentine, Owens Director of Employee Relations and Diversity. “I encourage area residents to engage themselves in Owens’ Diversity Week and draw inspiration from the varied topics, performances, and messages.”

Activities will commence on Saturday, April 5, with the Owens Dance Express Team hosting the first-ever Hip Hop Explosion Dance Convention and Competition. Area residents will have the opportunity to expand their knowledge about the art of hip-hop dance and showcase their dancing skills during the two-day event in the Student Health and Activities Center on the Toledo-area Campus.

Saturday’s (April 5) activities will feature hip-hop dance instruction from nationally-recognized professional choreographers Flo Master and Dena Rizzo, while a dancing skills talent competition will take place on Sunday, April 6. The Hip Hop Explosion Dance Convention and Competition will occur from 9 a.m. - 3 p.m. each day.

On Tuesday, April 8, the Terrace View Café will serve as host to a “History and Legacy of African Americans in Greater Toledo” Diversity Luncheon and Lecture from 11:30 a.m. - 1 p.m. Authentic “mid-Atlantic’ cuisine will serve as the theme for the Terrace View Café luncheon. In addition, Robert Smith, Founder and CEO of the African-American Legacy Project of Northwest Ohio, will provide attendees with insight into the cultural history and background of African-Americans in Greater Toledo.

The African-American Legacy Project of Northwest Ohio was founded in 2004 with the goal of creating a vehicle to secure and share the histories of African-Americans from the surrounding Northwest Ohio communities who left indelible impressions upon local communities, families and the world. The cuisine will be prepared by Owens students within the Culinary Arts program. Reservations must be made prior to the event. The Terrace View Café is located in College Hall on the Toledo-area Campus.

Starting at 1 p.m. on the Findlay-area Campus that same day (April 8), Owens’ Student Activities will host a presentation titled “Testing the Saturday Night Live Hypothesis: Preliminary Findings on Hillary Clinton’s Press Coverage.” Bowling Green State University Political Science Department faculty member Dr. Melissa Miller will lead a discussion about press coverage related to the Presidential candidates from a gender perspective. The discussion will occur in the College’s Conference Center.

In addition, Owens’ Findlay-area Campus will display 12 life-size, cardboard silhouettes of women who were killed in domestic violence disputes throughout the education center courtesy of Bowling Green State University. A story about their lives accompanies each silhouette.

Owens’ Diversity Week will continue with a Community Poetry Jam Contest on Wednesday, April 9. Area residents, as well as Owens employees and students, will have the opportunity to express and share their thoughts in public through the use of spoken word and poetry. Each individual will be allotted three minutes per artistic performance. The Community Poetry Jam Contest will occur from 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. in the Student Health and Activities Center on the Toledo-area Campus.

The week-long celebration of diversity will also feature two additional speaking engagements on the Toledo-area Campus on Thursday, April 10. Starting at 1:30 p.m., female community leaders and Owens students will share personal stories about overcoming adversity and empowerment, as well as stories from the best-selling book “That Takes Ovaries!: Bold Females and Their Brazen Acts,” in an open microphone format. The presentation will take place in the Center for Fine and Performing Arts Studio Theatre.

Additionally, Dr. Samuel H. Hancock, University of Toledo Assistant to the President for Institutional Diversity, will provide insight into understanding an individual’s culture as part of an interactive Cultural Competence Workshop that same day (April 10). The workshop will be held from 2-4 p.m. in Owens’ Fire Science and Law Enforcement Center Room 146.

Diversity Week activities will conclude with an Owens Blues Fest concert on Friday, April 11. Big Blues Bob and The Thin Ice Band will perform an array of crowd-pleasing blues selections from 8 p.m. - 12a.m. in the College’s Student Health and Activities Center on the Toledo-area Campus. The Owens Blues Fest concert will include refreshments.

Owens’ Diversity Week activities are being presented by the Diversity Enhancement Team. For additional information, call (567) 661-7421 or 1-800-GO-OWENS, Ext. 7421.





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