Le Moyne has named Kelsi-Leandra (KL) Lane as the new director of HEOP and AHANA.

Le Moyne has named Kelsi-Leandra (KL) Lane as the new director of HEOP and AHANA. She said she has plans to increase opportunities for students enrolled in the program.

Lane started on January 1st of this year and is not a stranger to working with HEOP. She worked with HEOP at Sage College of Albany for six years, before coming to work as the assistant director of the program here at Le Moyne. Her partner originally was hired by Le Moyne in 2015 for a tenure track program, and the two maintained two separate house for three years. She continued to look for jobs in the Syracuse area until she found the right job.

“I was immediately interested in LMC because of the size, mission, and community,” said Lane. “Having worked in admissions for years, I really believe it is important to “like” the school where you work at and that sharing the same values or ideology as your institution makes
the work that we do easier and enjoying the place you work makes the students want to be around too.”

Allison Farrell, the assistant Dean of Student Success at Le Moyne, was the chair of the HEOP Director search, according to Lane. “We had excellent candidates who applied for the position,” said Farrell, “but KL stood out because of her experience with working with the higher
education opportunity program at Sage College and previous work in admissions. She has been highly involved in advocacy within the state and aims to support students as they achieve a college education. KL is poised to strategically elevate Le Moyne's HEOP and AHANA
programs to the next level while focusing on the program’s deep roots, established by the strong leadership of the founding director, Carl Thomas. ”

Her role as Director includes working with admissions to admit students who fall just below Le Moyne’s admission qualifications to enroll in the program. She also works with other departments of the school, such as Campus Ministry, to involve the students of the program in
other opportunities across campus and to “tie our students into the amazing things that are happening here [at Le Moyne].”

Lane says that she is lucky to have started at the end of the 2014-2019 NYS grant cycle, as the new grant cycle will allow for some minor  adjustments to the HEOP and AHANA Programs in order to enrich them while keeping the overall goals of academic and economic
eligibility the same.

Rev. Charles Oduke, an advisor for HEOP and AHANA, works with students in the programs to keep students on the track to graduation, but meeting with them and discussing what courses they need to take in order to graduate on time. He says “The great equalizer that I have
come to know is education,” says “And so, giving people from marginalized groups a good education makes it possible for them to have an even playing field. Many of these students are first-generation college students, their families have never been [to college]; at most, maybe they had high school. They need support. They have no one at home they can call and say ‘What courses do I take?’ So they turn to this program.”

According to the Le Moyne College website, the Arthur O. Eve Higher Education Opportunity Program (HEOP) and the African-American, Hispanic, Asian, Native American (AHANA) Program provide academic support and counseling the students enrolled. The HEOP provides educational experience to students who, due to academic or financial circumstances, wouldn’t have been able to attend Le Moyne otherwise, whereas the AHANA Program is a reflection of Jesuit values, allowing the student body to exposed to the ethnic and cultural diversity of our society. The programs currently have 86 students enrolled.