Is Le Moyne Really Becoming More Diverse?

More stories from Anthony Pham

This year, Le Moyne College Board of Trustees increases diversity to match the increasing diversity of the student population.


This year the college board added an additional person of color, Marcus Washington. Washington is the current Headmaster of the Washington Jesuit Academy in Washington, DC.


Washington, one of the new Trustee members joins Wright Lassiter III to become the second person of color on the College Board representing the school. Previously the board was 97 percent white, now the board is 94 percent white.


The school population itself is becoming more and more diverse as the undergraduate student body is currently composed of 21.9 percent minority. An increase from 14.6 from 2016. The faculty makeup, however, has stayed relatively consistent with no major changes in diversity.


According to Robert Turner, the College Board’s Chair, “It’s always an objective to increase diversity on the board, whether it’s gender, people of color, and geographic diversity.”


In addition to Washington, there were four more trustees elected to the board to replace the five retiring trustees. Of the five new members, three of the elected trustees are female.


The current board makeup is made up of 15 female members, an increase of three to the previous 12. There are also 29 Le Moyne Alum on the College Board. Within the board, there is a wide array of individuals including local community members, work class business leaders, diverse career history, and socioeconomic backgrounds.


Students on campus are noticing the increased diversity within classes and the campus community. Student Sierra Williams noted that “It’s great to see someone that looks like me on campus. It proves to me that I’m not alone and I have other students that I can connect with.”


The college has recently rebranded the Office of Multicultural Affairs into the Office of Inclusive Excellence & Global Education. This reflects the ever-increasing commitment of the College to increase the diversity here on campus as well as the inclusivity of the campus as a whole.


The Director of the Office of Inclusive Excellence & Global Education, Bennie Williams has previously stated that “Having a racially diverse board would benefit the institution because their experiences as individuals will help the board appreciate the needs of diversity on campus and provide a real voice that represents an important group of our students.”


The college has “a range of programs and to establishing policies that encourage and promote diversity across campus, including recruiting and retaining diverse students and staff,” according to the school website.


Such as the HEOP/AHANA programs which provide additional support for minority students here on campus. The HEOP program focuses on supporting students from low-income situations in conjunction with NYS Education Department. Whereas the AHANA program was developed to introduce a richer ethnic-racial diversity to the school.


Another student, Dani Akins, came to Le Moyne as part of the of the HEOP/AHANA program and says “Without the program here at Le Moyne, I wouldn’t have even chosen Le Moyne. It’s opened up so many opportunities for me.”


Many minority students have noticed that within their classes that they are seeing more and more students of color even though the school is still majority white. Both Akins and Williams agree that the school has a long way to go before the school is truly diverse.