Exterior shot of the D"Angelo Center building

Office of Multicultural Affairs

The Office of Multicultural Affairs (OMA) strives to foster a more inclusive and culturally competent campus environment where students feel a strong sense of belonging and where their similarities and differences of identity and experience are acknowledged, understood, valued, and celebrated.  

We live out our mission by providing educational opportunities, informative trainings, rich programs and inclusive services.  We regularly collaborate with internal and external campus partners to challenge and rid out systems of oppression and inequality so that we may strengthen our institution's legacy of inclusion. 

Daily, we work to increase students' awareness and their capacity for empathy by exposing them to cultures and experiences different than their own, addressing campus climate issues, promoting global citizenship and inclusion, and by facilitating their self-actualizing growth and development.  

Continue reading or visit us to learn more about our programs!

OMA Signature Programs

The Office of Multicultural Affairs is now offering Women of Color, Men of Color, and LGBTQ+ Discussion Groups to engage in safe, inviting, and authentic discussion around students' experiences on St. John’s campus.

Meet other students, staff and faculty, build community, and discuss your experiences at St. John’s University. Participate in as many or as few discussions as you would like. The Common Ground Intergroup Dialogue facilitators and Administrators from across campus will serve as facilitators for the discussion group. We welcome opportunities to discuss any and all topics that are relevant to your experience (e.g., race relations, gender equality, media influences on self-esteem/body image, racism, sexism, career development, dating relationships, sexuality). You are welcome to join and bring a friend. We invite you to attend whenever you can! Affinity Groups play a vital role in fostering an inclusive environment where all are valued, included, and empowered to succeed.  They can provide a collective voice for student, faculty, and staff with common experiences. To ensure that the group offers a safe space, facilitators will invite the group to explore their racial, ethnic, and gender identity in the context of discussion that affirms the existence, and psychosocial impact, of racism, sexism, and homophobia.

Upcoming Events & Dialogues!

 

Affinity Group Kick-Off

October 31, 2019

Common Hour (1:50p.m.-3:10p.m.)

IRC, Sun Yat Sen Memorial Hall

All students invited!

 

Women of Color

Moderator: Monique Jernigan

Fall 2019 Dates:  Announcing Soon!
Location: Inclusive Resource Center

 

Men of Color
Moderator:  André McKenzie, Ed.D.

Fall 2019 Dates:  Announcing Soon!
Location: Inclusive Resource Center

 

LGBTQ+
Moderator:  Jane Barry

Fall 2019 Dates:  Announcing Soon!
Location: Inclusive Resource Center

AIM for a successful transition into your first year of college with Project AIM!

Mission

Project AIM is a 9-month peer mentoring program   supporting international freshmen for their success. Pillars include college transition, life adjustment in the United States, cultural assimilation, academic excellence, and career development through a social and intellectual learning environment outside of the classroom.

Programs and Services

  • Interaction with Mentors: Peer mentors offer consistent academic, social, cultural, and personal support to their mentees, including practice speaking English via all possible communication channels and in-person meetings. 
  • Academic Success and Career Development: Peer mentors offer individual coaching and guidance to mentees on academic achievement and career preparation utilizing campus resources.
  • Cultural Diversity Programming: Peer mentors invite mentees to participate in on-campus, cross-cultural activities and DiverCity events in New York City, which celebrates the diversity of our students and our nation.
  • Vincentian Mission and Social Action: Peer mentors and mentees conduct community service projects as a group to experience the Vincentian tradition of serving the poor and taking action to better society.
  • Immigration Regulations Workshops: Peer mentors and mentees with F-1 or J-1 status are invited to immigration regulations workshops presented by University international student advisors and immigration attorneys, who discuss CPT, OPT, H1B, Traveling, Maintaining Status, and other updated immigration policies.

The Diversity Peer Education Program is dedicated to creating an inclusive campus environment by spreading cultural awareness and sensitivity while promoting diversity and social justice at St. John’s University. Diversity Peer Educators (DPEs) work with student leaders and organizations on a request basis to facilitate workshops related to social justice and diversity throughout the school year.

The DPEs
Diversity Peer Educators (DPEs) are trained undergraduate students who work for the Office of Multicultural Affairs.  The DPEs facilitate training courses meant to create brave spaces where student participants can share their experiences, identities, and connect across difference. DPEs utilize their voices and passion for equity, inclusion, and social justice to help create a more inclusive St. John’s community where students can learn from one another and gain knowledge about others. In addition to facilitating training courses, DPEs support and host special events to promote social justice on campus and are ambassadors for the Office of Multicultural Affairs.

Training Courses
Our staff created a series of social justice training courses that increase in level of self-awareness, social justice knowledge, and skill. Each training is about two hours in duration. You must complete the training courses in order.

Level One: Increasing Cultural Competency
This introductory training will help participants understand who they are, their cultural influences, and how those aspects intersect. Through interactive activities and discussions, participants will explore their current cultural competency and learn more about each other.

Level Two: Social Justice Foundations
Through interactive activities and discussions, this training will allow participants to further explore their identities and learn more about power, privilege, and intersectionality.

Level Three: Understanding and Reacting to Implicit Bias and Microaggressions
Through interactive activities and discussions, this training will help participants recognize and respond to implicit bias and microaggressions while also increasing the skills necessary to interact effectively with a diverse group of people.

Training Requests
If interested in participating in the DPE training courses, please complete the form below detailing your request and a member of our support staff will respond as soon as possible. When requesting a training please note that you must book between the following times:

Fall 2019

Mondays
5 p.m.-7 p.m.
(Last training is from 5-7 p.m.)

Tuesday-Thursday
2 p.m.-7 p.m.
(Last training is from 5-7 p.m.)

 

Spring 2020 -- Dates coming soon!


All training requests must be submitted at least two weeks in advance and you must have a confirmed space or room reservation. Departments: If you would like to reserve the IRC lecture room on behalf of your student led program, please email [email protected] before completing this form to see if the IRC is available. Your training is not confirmed until you receive confirmation from the DPE Graduate Assistant.

DPE Training Request Form 

Student Involvement

The Diversity Peer Educator applications have closed.  Applications for the Fall 2020-Spring 2021 academic year will begin in March 2020.

For more information regarding the Diversity Peer Education Program and other social justice training, please contact the Graduate Coordinator, Seraiah Romero at 718-990-3326 or the Executive Director of Multicultural Affairs, Monique Jernigan, at [email protected]  

Follow the DPEs!
Instagram

 

Common Ground is a program through the Office of Multicultural Affairs that provides opportunities for diverse groups of students to come together to engage in peer-led dialogues about issues that have important implications in our society.

Key characteristics of Common Ground Intergroup Dialogue:

• All Common Ground dialogue groups are co-led by pairs of St John’s University undergraduate students called Intergroup Dialogue facilitators who have gone through extensive training. Common Ground is a student-oriented program; all dialogue groups are for students and led by students.

• One of the fundamental principles underlying the Common Ground program is that some of the most powerful learning occurs through exposure to and consideration of multiple perspectives. Therefore, one of our most important goals is to create a dialogue group environment in which students talk openly and candidly about serious issues related to identity and inequities while also listening carefully to the views and experiences of others, especially if someone has a view that is different from their own. We hope that each person emerges from the experience with a deeper and more complete understanding of the issues presented and their complexities.

You can apply to be a Common Ground Intergroup Dialogue facilitator here. Applications are due October 15 at Noon.

Heritage Month Celebrations

In appreciation and celebration of cultural diversity, the Office of Multicultural Affairs collaborates with student leaders, student organizations, and campus partners to host a month-long observance of select heritage month celebrations.

If you are interested in the planning and implementation of any of these months, please fill out this form.

Latinx Heritage Month (LHM)

Latinx Heritage Month, also known as National Hispanic Heritage Month is nationally celebrated each year from September 15 to October 15, by celebrating the histories, cultures and contributions of those whose ancestors came from Spain, Mexico, the Caribbean and Central and South America.

Native and Indigenous Heritage Month (NIHM)

In appreciation and celebration of the shared history and culture of Native and Indigenous peoples of America. Sponsored by the Office of Multicultural Affairs. 

Black History Month (BHM)

Black History Month, or National African American History Month, is an annual celebration of achievements by black Americans and a time for recognizing the central role of African Americans in U.S. history.

Asian American/Pacific Islander Heritage Month (APHM)

Typically celebrated in May, but celebrated in April at St. John’s so more students can participate, Asian American /Pacific Islander Heritage Month is a celebration of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders in the United States.  it encompasses all of the Asian continent and the Pacific islands of Melanesia, Micronesia, and Polynesia.

Our Staff

Monique Jernigan, Executive Director of Multicultural Affairs & Director of Inclusivity Resource Center
[email protected]

Monique Jernigan joined the St. John's community in October 2018. She comes to us with many years of experience in the field of diversity, equity, and inclusion supporting policy, programming, and services that promote equity and inclusion.  Her past experience includes work in small, private liberal arts colleges, K-12 independent schools, and mid-sized comprehensive universities.  Monique believes that students should always be first, and that their experiences and narratives should remain central to the mission and work of all educational institutions and their employees.  Monique's leadership includes supervising the professional staff, select graduate assistants, and continued innovation and partnership with campus colleagues, departments and students to create a more inclusive and affirming campus environment.   

Rosa Yen, Director of International Student Services and Multicultural Affairs
[email protected]

Rosa Yen is the Director of International Student Services and Multicultural Affairs and began working at St. John’s University more than 17 years ago. Originally from Taiwan, Ms. Yen felt a natural connection to international students and issues of multiculturalism and social change. She directly oversees the Project AIM International student peer mentoring program, Asian Alliance, and both Asian/Pacific Islander and Indigenous People heritage celebrations. In addition to her full-time position as an administrator, she serves as an adjunct faculty member, teaching Discover New York and Liberal Studies classes in the College of Professional Studies since 2007. She also speaks fluent Mandarin, English, and Taiwanese.

Seraiah Mariel Romero, Graduate Assistant
 

Seraiah Mariel Romero is a Graduate Assistant for the Office of Multicultural Affairs. Seraiah helps oversee the Diversity Peer Education Program and other Social Justice Training & Education initiatives.  She went to St. John’s University as an undergraduate and is currently earning her master’s degree in international communications. She has been involved with OMA since her freshman year, is the former Graduate Assistant for Project Aim, and is passionate about media production and culture.

Katarzyna (Kasia) Endler, Graduate Assistant
 

Katarzyna (Kasia) is a Graduate Assistant for the Office of Multicultural Affairs. Kasia helps oversee the Intergroup Dialogue Peer Facilitators, Common Ground Series, and both Black and Latino heritage celebrations. She earned her bachelor's degree in Anthropology from Fordham University and is currently earning her master's degree in speech and language pathology at St. John's. This is her first year with OMA and she enjoys reading and learning about new cultures. 

Queens Campus

D'Angelo Center, Room 124
Monday to Thursday: 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Friday: 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Tel: 718-990-5400
[email protected]

 

Sun Yat Sen Memorial Hall, Inclusivity Resource Center
Monday to Thursday: 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Friday: 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Tel: 718-990-2515
[email protected]

 

Staten Island Campus

Kelleher Center, Office of Multicultural Affairs

Monday to Thursday: 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Friday: 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Tel: 718-390-4470
[email protected]