DEI Achievements Across MSU

The Office for Institutional Diversity and Inclusion wants to celebrate MSU's DEI efforts. For additional information, please contact Dr. Mina Shin at


The MSU IT DEI Committee members and co-chairs. From left to right, Jason Beaudin (Co-Chair), Gabrielle Miller (Co-Chair), Naser Alavi, Halie Albrecht, Justin Booth, Sarah Davis, Jonathan Schulz, Michelle Szidik, Jonathan Walker, Kevin Webert, Larry White.

The MSU IT DEI Committee members and co-chairs. From left to right, Jason Beaudin (Co-Chair), Gabrielle Miller (Co-Chair), Naser Alavi, Halie Albrecht, Justin Booth, Sarah Davis, Jonathan Schulz, Michelle Szidik, Jonathan Walker, Kevin Webert, Larry White.

MSU IT DEI Advisory Committee Formed


MSU IT has demonstrated continued excellence in contributing to the University’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) Strategic Plan through the formation of the MSU IT DEI Advisory Committee. Formed in collaboration with the EVPA Office of DEI, the committee is charged with driving meaningful organizational change.

Jason Beaudin, the executive director for Educational Technology and committee co-chair, states that “these individuals bring diverse perspectives and representation to the committee’s efforts toward promoting a workplace culture in MSU IT that embraces diversity, equity and inclusion, fostering an environment where every member feels valued and supported. By collecting stakeholder feedback and suggesting opportunities for better alignment with the core goals of the University’s DEI Strategic Plan, we aim to increase diversity, ensure equity, promote inclusion and enhance outreach and engagement.”

The committee will coordinate with EVPA DEI experts and IT stakeholders to monitor, assess and review the employment climate at MSU IT. Through the efforts of this committee, MSU IT promotes a diverse and inclusive workplace, with the goals of improving employee morale and creativity, while bolstering their innovation and problem-solving.

An IPF Crew on its way to service a call on campus.

An IPF Crew on its way to service a call on campus.

IPF Publishes Annual DEI Report


The EVPA Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, or Office of DEI, is pleased to announce the release of the Infrastructure Planning and Facilities (IPF) DEI Annual Report. This report highlights its continued commitment to DEI progress across the unit, campus and external community. In his opening words reflecting on university strategic plan efforts, Dan Bollman, vice president for strategic Infrastructure Planning and Facilities, states that “Twenty-five diversity, equity, and inclusion action items were tracked in 2022-23, with a focus on promoting inclusion and enhancing outreach and engagement as it pertains to accessibility, physical environment and supplier diversity.”

Tina Alonzo, DEI administrator for the Office of DEI, shared, “IPF colleagues continue to build on the strength of our unwavering commitment to collectively advance diversity, equity, and inclusion and the many ways in which C.A.R.E.S (communication, appreciation, respect, empathy and sensitivity) strives to be the highest performing, leading-edge facilities organization in the nation.” Over the past year, IPF has made significant strides in championing DEI initiatives, and this report provides a comprehensive overview of IPF strategic plan progress, accomplishments and future initiatives.

Berlin Science Week webinar background

Berlin Science Week webinar background

Global Perspectives on Race in the DEI Landscape

Anjam Chaudhary, International Studies and Programs (ISP)-DEI

The concept of "race" is intricate and culturally nuanced, with a different understanding according to where we are in the world. The Office of International Studies and Programs at Michigan State University collaborated with the Berlin Science Festival to inaugurate the first segment of the 3-part webinar on Race and Racialization in a Global Context.

The goal of this international collaboration is to keep broadening our national dialogue decentering the binary discourse predominantly prevalent in the United States.

In the inaugural webinar, Daniela Felletti, a Global DEI professional based in Europe, and Dr. Anjam Chaudhary delved into the multifaceted meanings and interpretations of the concept of race when viewed through a global lens. Drawing from personal and professional narratives, they shed the light on how popular culture often reinforces racist social imageries tied to whiteness.

The upcoming segments, part two and part three, will highlight the dynamics of race, racism and whiteness within global higher education. MSU faculty and students will share their research and stories, contributing to a comprehensive exploration of race in a global academic context.

This webinar series stands to foster a truly inclusive dialogue on race that extends beyond geographical boundaries, encouraging a more nuanced and globally informed approach to DEI initiatives.


Isabelle Desgagné-Penix on the podium opening her keynote talk with the first slide on the right.

Isabelle Desgagné-Penix on the podium opening her keynote talk with the first slide on the right.

First Symposium for Indigenous Connections at MSU Brings Together Plant Research and Inspiration for Collaboration with Indigenous Communities 

Department of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology 

MSU and the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology hosted the 62nd annual Phytochemical Society of North America, or PSNA, meeting for the first time this summer. Faculty member Björn Hamberger and the local organizing committee used this unique opportunity to envision and organize the inaugural Symposium for Indigenous Connections. Isabel Desgangé-Penix (Université du Québec à Trois-Rivières), biochemistry professor and member of the First Nation, presented a highly encouraging keynote. It emphasized the interconnection of traditional knowledge and practices related to plant-based medicines with insights on building respectful and collaborative relationships. Cory Harris (University of Ottawa) gave his inspiring talk about the health benefits of wild fruits of the indigenous diet and his engagement with Inuit communities, enabling his work with elders and youth. The third highlight was delivered by graduate student Anna Cowie (UC Davis), explaining how she was involved in developing a hands-on workshop for natural products and synthetic biology for undergraduate students at the Amazon Regional University in Ecuador. The overwhelming response made this symposium an inaugural event, which will be continued at the PSNA 2024 in Mexico.  

Support for this initiative came from Björn’s James K. Billman Jr., M.D., endowment and MSU's Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Department, College of Natural Science, Office of Research and Innovation, DOE Plant Research Laboratory and Drug Discovery Program, allowing the organizers to invite these exceptional speakers and present 20 outstanding students with travel awards. Students delivered more than half of the talks at the conference. 


The IPF DEI Council packaging slices of bread for Meals on Wheels. Pictured from left to right are Ken Londos (Landscape Services), Tina Alonzo (EVPA Office of DEI), Lisa Desprez-Orr (Comms, Learning & Development), Mary Clark (Safety), Nicole Milam (Power and Water), and DJ Hogan (EVPA Office of DEI).

The IPF DEI Council packaging slices of bread for Meals on Wheels. Pictured from left to right are Ken Londos (Landscape Services), Tina Alonzo (EVPA Office of DEI), Lisa Desprez-Orr (Comms, Learning & Development), Mary Clark (Safety), Nicole Milam (Power and Water), and DJ Hogan (EVPA Office of DEI). 

IPF DEI Council Volunteer Efforts 

Offices of the Executive Vice President for Administration

On Aug. 3rd, the Infrastructure Planning and Facilities, or IPF, DEI Council volunteered with the Tri-County Office on Aging, or TCOA, as part of the newly launched Community Engagement Volunteer Pilot Program, MSU CARES. The team prepared Meals on Wheels lunches, a program vital in supporting TCOA’s focus on care for older adults and those with disabilities. Over a productive morning, the team packaged 2,000 slices of bread to enrich the lives of the community. After the event, DJ Hogan, EVPA DEI programs manager, remarked, “It’s a great opportunity to work alongside your colleagues and volunteer for the community.”

The MSU CARES Volunteer Pilot Program is a central repository of over 100 approved community partners, serving as a resource for individual and team volunteer opportunities for employees. To learn more about the MSU CARES program or choose a volunteer event, visit


Members of the International Students Association

Members of the International Students Association 

150th Anniversary of MSU's First International Students

Office of Internatioal Students and Scholars, International Students Association 

John Macara, William A Nugh, Nagatane Soma and Tunetaro Yamaou were among the first international students who joined Michigan State University in 1873. Their early presence on our campus, during the institution's formative years of international enrollment, marked a significant milestone in the initiation of cultural exchange and diversity.

Today, MSU is home to over 9,000 international students, scholars from more than 140 countries enriching our global perspective beyond the classroom. This cultural and linguistic diversity enriches our university experience. 

To celebrate this milestone, the Office of International Students and Scholars, the International Student Association and 150 international students participated in the Homecoming Parade on September 22, 2023. It was a unique opportunity for them to showcase their cultures through traditional attires and country flags.


WACSS annual report graphic

WACSS annual report 

Women's Advisory Committee For Support Staff Annual Report

Workforce Action Committee for Spartan Staff*

*The organization underwent a name change from the Women’s Advisory Committee for Support Staff to the Workforce Action Committee for Spartan Staff.

The Workforce Action Committee for Spartan Staff, or WACSS, now supporting support staff, academic staff and executive management has accomplished many projects over the past year which has been impactful to all University community members creating a positive environment and recognizing support staff.

WACSS is the only committee for support staff and has continued to serve and build community by being a resource and highlighting all the progress of WACSS goals and holding up to their values. Some activities and achievements that promoted advocacy, connectivity, engagement, and staff development was the Mission Menstruation, Building Bridges of Spartan Connections, and Building on Employee Recognition Efforts. With the guidance of their values WACCS serves as a voice to all support staff on and off campus. Also, with the help of WACSS four subcommittees there has been some great progress into the focus of their values which with recent name change WACSS has made this change in order expand into a bigger community promoting inclusion and having a bigger impact. 


ICI framework wheel

ICI Framework wheel, figure one in annual report 

Inclusive Campus Initiative Reflects on Supporting Students in Annual Report 

Inclusive Campus Initiative 

To begin their third year of supporting students in the MSU community, the Inclusive Campus Initiative, or ICI, rolled out their end-of-year report to provide an opportunity to look back on their work, check in on ongoing projects and analyze the relationships they have built. 

The findings of this report make it clear that the ICI has created a space that promotes collaboration while ensuring that such group work can thrive. Their efforts support diversity, equity and inclusion practitioners while inviting community members to engage in problem-solving conversations and planning to create an inclusive campus ecosystem.

The report prioritizes transparency and includes a discussion on the ICI framework. This framework was created in response to questions about their guiding work, including: How do they center students? How do they support historically marginalized students? How do they build partnerships and support the advocacy work of student groups? How do we implement changes to campus quickly while persevering and staying vigilant through the work that takes time? How do they support the past, present and ongoing needs of students?


group poses for a photo

From left to right: Salah Hassan, Jemimah David-Makeri, Rita Ambeu, Anjam Chaudhary, Chioma Fakorede, Cynthia Wakuna, Priye Diri and Joseph M.J. Ndondi.

Cross-Campus Collaboration to Support the Mandela Washington Fellows 2023 Cohort 

International Studies and Programs

The International Studies and Programs' DEI team and Global Studies in the Arts and Humanities joined forces with professionals from 11 MSU units, departments and colleges, as well as East Lansing's Mayor Ron Bacon during summer 2023. The aim is to offer an enriching coaching experience to the Mandela Washington Fellows, who spent six transformative weeks on MSU’s campus.

The Mandela Washington Fellowship is the flagship program of the Young African Leaders Initiative that brings together accomplished African leaders who have demonstrated a dedication to innovation and positive change within their Sub-Saharan communities and nations. Led by Salah Hassan, the director of Global Studies, MSU was selected as a host institute for 26 of the 700 Mandela Washington Fellows.

Twenty-two MSU staff and faculty members and East Lansing Mayor Ron Bacon positively responded to our invitation to serve as a mentor sharing their insights and experiences with the fellows. These interactions laid foundations to share stories, build relationships and materialize our Global DEI vision.

This collaborative achievement stands as a testament to MSU's dedication to fostering an inclusive environment that transcends boundaries and nurtures a collective understanding of diversity in all its forms. Through these efforts, MSU's commitment to global DEI reaches new heights, inspiring future global leaders and forging enduring cross-cultural connections.



Graphic featuring group of participants from the ICI summit, with call out bubbles and contact informations.

Presenters and moderators of the 3rd annual Inclusive Campus Intiative Campus Partner Summit on June 26.

3rd Annual Inclusive Campus Initiative Campus Partner Summit

Inclusive Campus Initiative

The 3rd Annual Inclusive Campus Initiative, or ICI, Campus Partner Summit was held on Monday, June 26, at the STEM Building. The theme for this year’s summit was “Building an Inclusive Campus Ecosystem,” focusing on the crucial role of campus partners in fostering a culture of inclusion at Michigan State University. The event featured mini-flash presentations by Shelby Gombosi, assistant director at the Resource Center for Persons with Disabilities, Grace Wojcik, director of The Gender and Sexuality Campus Center, and Matea Čaluk, associate director of Prevention, Outreach and Education Department, discussing disabilities, LGBTQIA2S+ perspectives and Relationship Violence & Sexual Misconduct through a diversity, equity and inclusion lens.

Attendees engaged in strategy sessions, including a Community Trauma Response Team, campus resource sharing and inclusive digital spaces, with plans to form ongoing task forces for the 2023-24 academic year. The summit also included updates on DEI Foundations by Office for Institutional Diversity staff members Mina Shin, Ph.D., DEI learning development specialist, and Patti Stewart, Ph.D., director of education and development programs and a global perspective on DEI presented by Anjam Chaudhary, Ph.D., DEI coordinator in International Studies and Programs.

The keynote talk was delivered by Fijian Humphrey Fellow Lite Seruvakula, who shared her transformative journey at MSU, highlighting the impact of the university’s inclusive ecosystem on her sense of belonging during life-changing moments. The day concluded with an inspiring panel of dedicated MSU staff—Luis Garcia, director of Migrant Student Services, Murray Edwards, assistant director of the Office of Cultural & Academic Transitions, Brenda Nelson, associate director of DEIB for Culinary Services, Stephanie Chau, assistant director of undergraduate diversity for the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources and Swapna Hingwe, D.O., associate director of Counseling and Psychiatric Services—providing valuable insights and proven methods for enhancing student success.

For more information about the Inclusive Campus Initiative, contact Meaghan Kozar, Ph.D.,


 Panelists sitting at a table.

MSU panelists at the 2023 NCORE in New Orleans, Louisiana, from left to right: Meaghan Kozar (at lectern), Dwayne Jones, Kimberly Steed-Page, Swapna Hingwe and Matea Čaluk.

The Inclusive Campus Initiative Represents MSU at NCORE!

Several representatives from the Inclusive Campus Initiative, or ICI, had the opportunity to share with higher education professionals around the country the impact of the ICI’s work at the 35th annual National Conference on Race and Ethnicity in two sessions. The first session, "From the Ground-Up!: A Blueprint for Centering Marginalized Student and Community Needs,” demonstrated ICI’s ability to remove barriers in supporting student and community needs by hearing from the perspective of a student (Nadir Hamid), staff (Meaghan Kozar) and administrator (Vennie Gore).

Our second presentation, "We Really Do Care! The Creation of an Inclusive Campus Ecosystem," featured an MSU campus partner panel who has played an integral role in shaping the ICI. The panel outlined the impact of the ICI task forces over the past two years. Kimberly Steed-Page, director of Student Parent Resource Center, described strategies and challenges of supporting our historically marginalized students. Swapna Hingwe, D.O., associate director of Counseling & Psychiatric Services, described strategies for incorporating mental health. Dwayne L. Jones, sergeant and member of the inclusion and anti-bias unit for MSU Police and Public Safety, identified the increased safety measures within our campus environment. Finally, Matea Čaluk, associate director of Prevention, Outreach and Education Department, demonstrated the increased awareness of the Anti-Discrimination Policy. In addition, our panelists identified the ICI’s contribution in breaking down silos. Through increased awareness and collaborations, campus partners can identify gaps in resources while working toward solutions.


Large group photo of fellows

2023 Mandela Washington Fellows: Sandra Sefhako, Djamiratou Natounkelsba Nadege Zorom, Wakuna Ngang Sirri Cynthia, George Agbor-Ntoh Ashu, Rita Chiepie Jocelyne Ambeu, Ilham Said Chirwa, Kulsma Nur Ali, Cherno Gaye, Brian Muchiri Waihenya, Lilian Olivia Akinyi Orero, Kahisano Amelia Kolobe, Refiloehape Khauhelo Sesinyi, Fatoumata Koita, Joseph Mukuve Junior Ndondi, Diepriye Ibim Diri, Chioma Sylvia Fakorede, Jemimah Seer Rumunter David Makeri, Onyeka Nwigwe, Ibrahima Syll, Ephraim Modi Duku Sokiri, Patrick Kapanda Kabanda, Calvin Manika, Juliet Gudhlanga, Takunda Wilson Make, Youngerson Matete with Mayor of East Lansing, Ron Bacon standing in the middle, Rofiat Bello (graduate student at MSU) sitting on the left with a white scarf and Dr. Anjam Chaudhary standing on the left.

Delivering Intercultural Competence and Global DEI Training

International Studies and Programs

For the second consecutive summer, the International Studies and Programs, or ISP, joined forces with both Visiting International Professional Program, and Global Studies in Arts and Humanities to deliver enriching intercultural competence and Global Diversity, Equity and Inclusion workshops and courses. These initiatives have provided valuable opportunities for hundreds of global Spartans visiting Michigan State University during summer 2023.

One notable collaboration involved Dr. Salah Hassan, director of Global Studies in Arts and Humanities who led the Mandela Washington Fellowship Program at MSU and Dr. Anjam Chaudhary, DEI coordinator for ISP. Together, they organized a series of training sessions for the Mandela Washington fellows, focusing on team building and intercultural communication. Over 20 dedicated MSU professionals generously volunteered their time to coach the fellows, providing them with guidance throughout this unique experience.

In addition, the SUSI (Study of the United States Institute) fellows from various European countries started a program centered on immersion into cross-cultural communication within a global context. SUSI acquired strategies to navigate different cultural environments and build meaningful relationships with their international peers. Similarly, German Fulbright fellows participated in a one-week course on intercultural communication and leadership in a global context. They explored their own value systems, uncovered biases, and developed skills such as offering compassionate and culturally aware feedback, as well as strategies for active listening.

These cross-campus collaborations and training programs for international visitors illustrate a vision to integrate Global DEI principles across MSU programs. This vision was developed by both Dr. Ashley Green, director of DEI at ISP and Chaudhary. These efforts highlight a dedication to fostering intercultural understanding and collaboration among Spartans from around the world.


Student asking a question

A new medical student at the MSU College of Osteopathic Medicine asks questions during orientation.

New Student Orientation July 2023 Includes Panel Discussion on Inclusive Practices in Medicine and Medical Research

College of Osteopathic Medicine

On the first day of orientation for the new class of medical students, the Michigan State University College of Osteopathic Medicine, or MSUCOM, hosted a panel discussion on Inclusive Practices in Medicine and Medical Research. During this time, students from the Class of 2027 interacted with diverse MSUCOM faculty who embody diversity, equity and inclusion. Also, MSUCOM’s commitment to both inclusion and equity as core values was demonstrated during this event. 

The panel discussion included MSUCOM Dean Andrea Amalfitano, D.O., Ph.D.; Richard Bryce, D.O., Family and Community Medicine faculty; Amara Ezeamama, Ph.D., associate professor in the Department of Psychiatry; Reddog Sina, D.O., associate professor in the Department of Osteopathic Manipulative Medicine; and Marita Gilbert, Ph.D., associate dean of Diversity and Campus Inclusion for the college. Moderators were Chinyere Tobias, M.A., academic and career advising faculty at the college’s Detroit Medical Center site; and medical students Naiyah Thompson and Neema Kamau. 

Panel discusses inclusive practices in medicine and medical research and addresses questions.

Panelists offered reflections centered on inclusive practices in their work. Also, they shared personal experiences of their efforts to promote Diversity and Inclusion in their roles as clinicians, researchers and/or DEI practitioners. In addition, students engaged with the panelists by asking questions, reflecting on the knowledge they gained and discussing their plans to be inclusive excellence advocates.



ISP June 2023 Photo 1ISP June Photo 2

In the left image, from left to right, Ashley Green and Anjam Chaudhary. Pictured in the right image, is Anjam Chaudhary and Daniela Felleti on screen.

Presenting Global Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at NCORE 2023 

International Studies and Programs 

Michigan State University made a significant impact at the National Conference on Race and Ethnicity, or NCORE, 2023 in New Orleans, Louisiana. Spartans had a strong representation of 41 participants among the 5,000 attendees. The conference provided a platform for engaging discussions on race, ethnicity and other crucial DEI topics. 

Ashley Green and Anjam Chaudhary presented MSU’s work on Global DEI, approaching it from varying perspectives. They shared with participants the operationalization of Global DEI at MSU, highlighting the Global DEI task force and its four subcommittees: Language and Images, Campus Climate, Service and Support and Curriculum & Faculty. They showcased the collaborative efforts of administrators, practitioners, scholars, educators and students, emphasizing the inclusion of a global perspective in MSU's DEI initiatives across the campus. 

In collaboration with Daniella Felletti, a global DEI practitioner, Anjam delved into the topic of race and racialization from a global standpoint. This discussion shed light on the diverse experiences of race and ethnicity across various local cultures worldwide. The positive feedback received has led to the development of an upcoming three-part webinar series on race and racialization from a global perspective, scheduled to commence in fall 2023. 


NatSci DEI Achievement

On the top from left to right, Vanessa McCaffrey, Anjam Chaudhary, Raychel Meyer-Payne, Shelby Conrad, Claudia Vergara and Ann Allegra. On the bottom from left to right, Becky La, Sherri Reese and Ashley Maloff. Photo credit: Nick Goldblatt

NatSci DEI Facilitation Training Members

College of Natural Science

The College of Natural Science Office for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion has trained 10 new facilitators to lead the workshop series, Cultural Competency for Personal, Organizational and Community Change. Over the spring semester, trainees dedicated more than 30 hours to achieve their new facilitator roles. They will join the current team of facilitators, who have lead workshops since 2019.  

The cultural competency workshops are offered in the fall and spring semesters. The workshops are open to MSU employees and graduate students. Through self-reflection and group activities, participants explore issues of power, oppression and privilege. During this time, the participants will increase their self-awareness of social identities, identify systems of inequity and oppression and learn a framework for cultural competency development. These concepts are applied toward personal and organizational change, with a focus on work at MSU.


June Global DEI Higher Ed Conference Morocco

Pictured is the MSU and UM6P planning committee for the Global Diversity, Equity and Inclusion in Higher Education Conference, held on the campus of UM6P in Ben Guerir, Morocco. From left to right, Ashley Green (MSU), Karim Maredia (MSU), Quentin Tyler (MSU), Mustapha El Bouhssini (UM6P), Anjam Chaudhary (MSU), Meryem Inabi (UM6P) and Callista Rakhmatov (MSU). 

The Global Diversity, Equity and Inclusion in Higher Education Conference Morocco, May 16-17

International Studies and Programs  

Michigan State University's International Studies and Programs, or "ISP," College of Agriculture and Natural Resources, MSU Extension and AgBioResearch collaborated with the University of Mohammed 6 Polytechnic, or "UM6P," to host the inaugural Global Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in Higher Education conference in Morocco on May 16-17, 2023. Supported by Creating Inclusive Excellence Grants funding from IDI, this event provided a platform for multi-cultural engagement and cross-cultural communication with an objective to discuss and address DEI topics through a global lens.  

Bringing together these MSU campus partners and UM6P, showcased the power of global leadership and collaboration in driving meaningful change. The conference served as a catalyst for fostering inclusivity and equity in higher education, particularly in the field of Agriculture in the MENA region. It offered a platform for dynamic discussions, embracing diverse voices, experiences and expertise. Key DEI topics, such as women's equity, cross-cultural competence and effective implementation strategies took center stage, inspiring participants to address these vital issues collectively. 

The conference's success lays the foundation for continued collaboration and network expansion, paving the way for future initiatives that contribute to a more equitable and inclusive higher education landscape. 


CSN Career Closet logoCSN Career Closet image

Images of various professional clothing items collected through the donation drive. Photo credit: Elizabeth Newman

Career Services Network Creating Career Resources 

Career Services Network 

For many students, getting access to appropriate and professional attire for career fairs, interviews and networking events is a barrier. This May, MSU Career Services Network wrapped up a successful campus and community wide clothing drive for the career clothing closet scheduled to open this Fall Semester 2023. The drive was also supported by various alumni and professional organizations throughout the state of Michigan allowing a wide range of professional clothing items representative of all genders, sizes, and styles to be collected. The closet will be a free resource for all MSU students to borrow the professional items needed to confidently participate in various career related events (i.e., career fairs, interviews, employer mixers).  

The career closet will be in the Student Services Building, Room 113 – Career Exploration Center, 556 E Circle Dr. Room 113 East Lansing, MI 48824. 

Please contact Ellise Lee; or Victoria Morris; for more information. 



Diversity Week 2023

MSU College of Osteopathic Medicine DEI Report 

The Michigan State University College of Osteopathic Medicine, or MSUCOM, students and members of the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee, planned and carried out a series of events, covering topics from disability awareness to caring for pediatric patients and disparities to celebrate the fourth annual Diversity Week, March 27-31. Diversity Week provides a platform for students to discuss and promote a variety of issues important to them and in their careers.

The week of events provided an opportunity to “generate discussions around some of the more nuanced aspects of medicine and reminding us that equality is not the same as equity. Many of the events this year are looking at the unique considerations of certain patient populations and are designed to ask students, staff and faculty to critically engage with some of their own biases,” said Megan McGrath, a D.O.-Ph.D. student and OMS-I with MSUCOM.

This year’s events included interactive opportunities, such as finding the Spartan Helmet on the MSUCOM website. When located, participants could click on the helmet to be taken to an interactive discussion board regarding disability awareness. Abril Rodriguez, OMS-II, said the team chose the topics carefully and worked to make them interactive so participants would get more out of Diversity Week.

Events included a panel of patients with rare disease(s) and family members who tried to help participants understand their experiences with healthcare providers, which Anhdao Tran, OMS-IV, said was invaluable to the future physicians because the panel was “willing to answer difficult questions and guide us on how to better the patient-provider relationship and reduce harm.”

Also, in an effort to reduce harm, this year’s week focused on food insecurity and partnered with MSUCOM’s Detroit Street Care, Spartan Street Medicine and Macomb County Street Medicine, and competed to raise the most donations.

The week of events culminated with an informal dinner where students were able to meet with other students, faculty and staff for open discussions.

Learn more here:


Screenshot from the artist installation featuring a projected image of a note with numerous bags on the ground

The Nightly News installation view at the Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum at Michigan State University, 2023. Photo credit: Eat Pomegranate Photography.

The International Studies and Programs and the Broad Art Museum Collaboration 

Office of International Studies and Programs

Candy Chang's virtual talk and artistic installation, The Nightly News, currently featured at Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum are significant achievements for the International Studies and Programs Office and the Broad Art Museum's collaborative DEI efforts. Chang shared her unique perspectives and experiences using art as a transformative tool to connect people, heal communities and inspire social change. 

During her talk, Chang discussed The Nightly News, an interactive installation that encourages visitors to anonymously share their dreams, and how it facilitates community reflection and contemplation, promoting empathy and understanding among individuals.

Chang's work not only highlights the valuable contributions of the Asian Pacific Islander Desi American and Asian community but also emphasizes the impact of our actions on our communities and the world. The collaboration between the Office of International Studies and Programs and the Broad Art Museum brought this powerful conversation on the power of art to transform our world and encourage diversity, equity and inclusion.



ISP Butterfly Garden; credit: Dane Robinson; South Wall of the International Center decorated with butterflies and flowers. Two blue benches.

International Studies and Programs Butterfly Garden. Credit: Dane Robinson

International Center Lobby Transformed into Butterfly Garden

Office of International Studies and Programs

The Office of International Studies and Programs has partnered with the Asian Studies Center Japan Council. This collaboration will showcase Zahrah Resh's Butterfly Garden in the lobby of the International Center. This stunning art exhibit features more than 3000 colorful butterflies, each one is a testament to the collaborative efforts of the entire Spartan community. 

Thousands of people learned and practiced the Japanese art of paper folding, known as origami, to create this stunning garden. Months of preparation and contributions from all participants resulted in a grandiose display that highlights the strong and supportive community present on and beyond campus. 

As a former MSU student, Zahrah Resh is a talented and creative artist. She contributed her skills to create a space of healing and hope while celebrating the Asian culture during the Asian Pacific Islander Desi American, or APIDA, Heritage Month. 

The Butterfly Garden will remain on display throughout the spring semester, serving as a beautiful and inspiring reminder of the power of community and cooperation. 





ISP and GenCen Partner to offer Global Gender and Sexuality Webinar

Office of International Studies and Programs

On January 30, 2023,  International Studies and Programs, or ISP, and the Center for Gender in Global Context, or GenCen, partnered to offer MSU’s first webinar on Global Gender and Sexuality. This partnership provides an intentional platform for international students, faculty, staff and partners to share their voices to increase awareness and understanding around global gender and sexuality. A diverse group of four students, two faculty members, and an international practitioner shared their lived experiences, research, expertise, personal needs and challenges as a part of working with LGBTQIA2S+ global communities. 

Following the “inclusive language and images" webinar series, the global gender and sexuality webinar is an additional initiative to increase understanding and of Global Spartans’ needs, facilitate conversations and develop resources to reinforce inclusive communication and practices in a global context. ISP and GenCen are preparing an additional webinar that will include recommendations from students, faculty and experts to support and appropriately engage with the LGBTQIA2S+ global communities.



Department of Physiology DEI committee

In August 2022, the Department of Physiology welcomed six new faculty members to help champion its education, research and DEI goals. On top from left to right are Charlotte Vanacker, Byron Gipson and Shahnaz Masani. On the bottom from left to right are Ted Towse, Jennifer Doherty and Cameron Prigge. Credit: Adam Neff

MSU Department of Physiology's DEI Goals Encompassing by Design

Department of Physiology

The MSU Department of Physiology is committed to building and fostering an environment where innovation and collaboration prosper to deliver meaningful outcomes for its scholars, faculty and staff. Diversity and inclusion are fundamental elements of the PSL Department’s strategy and culture to create a sense of belonging while actively contributing to its collective success.

As part of its DEI goals, faculty and staff members recently participated in multiple training sessions sponsored by the College of Natural Science on developing cultural competency skills. Last year, the department created a DEI committee comprised of graduate students, faculty and staff members that best represent the department’s equitable and inclusive environment.

Under the guidance of Interim Chairperson Lawrence ‘Karl’ Olson, the DEI committee created a climate survey to better examine and understand the department’s DEI needs as well as the creation of the department’s Shared Value Statements. These efforts are important initiatives that will direct, lead and guide the Department of Physiology’s ongoing conversation and commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion.


MSU Youth Equity Project team

From left to right, Jennifer Cobbina-Dungy, Carole Gibbs, Kendall Morris and Emilie Smith.

Jennifer Cobbina-Dungy and Interdisciplinary Team Win Diversity Research Network's Launch Award

School of Criminal Justice, School of Social Work, Department of Human Development and Family Studies

Jennifer Cobbina-Dungy, Professor of Criminal Justice (CJ), is leading an interdisciplinary team of researchers including Carole Gibbs (CJ), Kendall Morris (Social Work) and Emilie Smith (Human Development and Family Studies) to examine community-engaged approaches to violence prevention. This effort represents the work of the MSU Youth Equity Project, the College of Social Science Thematic Area on Marginalized Youth focused on reducing disparities and increasing opportunities.

Led by the Michigan Public Health Initiative (MPHI) and the Ingham County Health Department, this partnership seeks to increase understanding of Advance Peace (AP), which strives to end “cyclical and retaliatory gun violence” by investing “in the development, health and wellbeing of those at the center of this crisis” using a healing-centered approach to address trauma. The project received a grant from IDI's Diversity Research Network Launch Awards Program.

Interestingly, a very small number of disproportionately poor, marginalized yet highly influential people in communities commit gun violence. This study will center on the perceptions and experiences of the outreach workers, family members and loved ones of participants. In addition, this examination will explore the challenges and benefits of outreach approaches for community safety efforts that move beyond traditional policing models. 



The Mosque of Ibn Tulun in Cairo, Egypt, features ancient architecture styles and decorations created from carved stucco and wood. (Photo credit: Wikimedia Commons) 

Muslim Studies Program Receives Templeton Religion Trust Grant

Muslim Studies Program (International Studies and Programs)

This past spring, the Muslim Studies Program—in conjunction with James Madison College and Global Studies in the Arts and Humanities—applied for and received a $228,000 Templeton Religion Trust grant for a project looking at Islamic architecture and interreligious relations. The project, entitled “Science, Art and Faith: Architectural Heritage and Islam,” is led by Martha Olcott, Mohammad Khalil, and Salah Hassan and involves numerous contributors in multiple countries. Special attention will be given to the architectural heritage in Egypt, Indonesia, Iraq, Morocco, Turkey, and Uzbekistan. Thus far, the project has organized various events, including a major spring workshop, and is currently developing a digital archive. For more information, please see


 Macomb County Street Medicine team talks with and helps a patient during a recent street runSpartan Street Medicine team prepares equipment and bags for street run

Spartan Street Medicine teams talks with patient (left) and prepares equipment and bags for street run.

MSUCOM Makes DEI History

College of Osteopathic Medicine

The DEI Committee of the MSU College of Osteopathic Medicine held its first annual retreat in August. Members discussed efforts and better ways to share accomplishments and stories. In addition, MSUCOM is the only health college invited to the Ubuntu Dialogue International Conference on decolonizing the academy (South Africa).

Also, MSUCOM has conducted several outreach programs including:

  • FutureDOcs – provides high school students interested in pursuing medical careers an opportunity to interact with physicians, medical students, and other healthcare professionals.
  • OsteoCHAMPS – an eight-day, on-campus residential summer program where high schoolers learn about osteopathic medicine, including anatomy, biochemistry, Osteopathic Manipulative Medicine (OMM), a research project, clinical skills and more.
  • Street Medicine/Street Care – student-led organizations partnering with others to provide care for the most vulnerable patients at each MSUCOM site.
    • Spartan Street Medicine – East Lansing
    • Detroit Street Care – Detroit
    • Macomb Street Medicine – Macomb County