WIU to move LGBT*QA Resource Center to Multicultural Center

Western Illinois University (Photo from Facebook)
Western Illinois University (Photo from Facebook)

MACOMB — Western Illinois University announced some changes to student support service office on Thursday.

“We have recently seen a marked increase in the University’s retention rates, and we want to continue to build upon those services we provide our students so they continue to be successful at Western,” Vice President for Student Services Ron Williams said in a press release on the WIU website. “With the upcoming retirements of two directors, and other staffing changes, it made sense to begin looking at the student support center and the office both in terms of one-stop shops to provide greater, and more convenient, access to our students. We will also experience significant cost savings with one director overseeing the center and one director overseeing the Office of Student Rights.”

The LGBT*QA Resource Center, currently in the University Union, will move to the Multicultural Center (MCC) this summer, and be fully operational by August. The move, Williams said in the release, provides increased visibility and space for the center, as well as for the LGTBQ student organization, Unity.

“The addition of the LGBT*QA Resource Center to the Multicultural Center could not come at a better time as August marks the 10th anniversary of the opening of the MCC. The central campus location allows these student centers to enhance their goals of providing educational, social and cultural programs, and raise awareness and appreciation for racial, ethnic and gender diversity,” Williams said.

The center joins Casa Latina Cultural Center, led by Rocio Ayard Ochoa; the Gwendolyn Brooks Cultural Center, led by Michael Williams; and the Women’s Center, led by Stephanie Hovsepian, at the MCC.

“The overall goal of the MCC is to be inclusively inviting and intentionally recognizing. We welcome students of all racial, ethnic and gender identities, and the addition of the LGBT*QA Resource Center amplifies our goal. We welcome the resource center to the MCC,” MCC management said in the release “We encourage students who are connected to the LGBT*QA Resource Center to visit the MCC, meet the other students and staff who call the MCC home, and make the MCC a place of their own.”

The MCC will host an open house during the Fall 2019 semester.

Other support office changes include Student Development, the Disability Support Center, the Career Development Center and the Health and Wellness division in Beu Health Center becommg the Student Development and Success Center. Following the upcoming retirements of personnel, the new center, which will be housed on the first floor of Memorial Hall, adjacent to the University Counseling Center, will be led by Samantha Klingler, program director at Beu Health Center. 

The moves will start on June 1.