The Beacon Spotlighting inclusivity at James Madison University.

Welcome to JMU Office of Access & Inclusion

Inaugural Newsletter

September/October, 2017

It is my pleasure to introduce this first edition of the Access & Inclusion newsletter. This newsletter brings together, shares, and acknowledges initiatives on campus that give all of us an opportunity to enrich our experience as members of our community.

As an institution of higher education named for the Father of the Constitution, there is no higher calling for JMU than to be a beacon of civil discourse on the major issues of our time. This newsletter beckons all of us to engage in a dialog where we can each grow and learn.

- President Jonathan Alger


Through a semester-long institute, led by JMU diversity champion Dr. Matthew Lee (Psychology), you will hone your skills for appreciating, leveraging, and responding to diversity within your classroom. Registration ends this Friday.
For Faculty, 3:00-5:00 p.m. on the following dates and locations:

September 6th, Montpelier Room

September 27th, Club Room Stadium

October 18th, CHBS 5040

The 9.11 JMU SVA 5k welcomes runners and walkers of all levels and of all ages. Dress up in your red, white, and blue and show us who you run for! Saturday, September 9th at 10:00a.m.-12:00p.m., Festival Center

Inclusive Wheelchair Basketball

Open to all students and faculty/staff. No experience or knowledge of the sport needed. Follow us on Twitter @JMURollinDukes. Join us every Tuesday, 12-1 UREC's MAC 1 gym.

ALANA Opening Event

September 13th, 3:30-5:30 p.m. Leelou Great Room

Constitution Day Speaker: Linda Monk, J.D.

Thursday, September 14th, 3:30-5:00p.m. Forbes Center Concert Hall

Dominion Lecture: Loretta Ross

Introduction by Provost Coltman, Thursday, Sept. 21st., 7:00 p.m. Madison Union Ballroom
Prepare to feast your eyes and ears on a rhythmic performance brimming with airtight synchronization, exuberant joy and a sense of humor. Friday, September 22, 8:00 p.m. Forbes Center

"Democracy in Peril" Lecture Series

The Department of History presents speakers: Frank Dukes, Distinguished Fellow Institute for Environmental Negotiation, UVA and David Ehrenpreis, Professor of Art History and Director of the Institute of Visual Studies, JMU. Tuesday, September 26th, 5:00 p.m. Wilson

Celebrating International Week - Sept. 25-30

An expert panel of those engaged in the pathway to ending conflict and promoting reconciliation in Colombia will participate in a guided discussion regarding their work with conflict-affected populations and talk about what the 2016 peace agreement means for communities impacted by the violence. Wednesday, September 27, 7:00-9:00p.m. Festival Ballroom A
While JMU alumnus Argus Paul Estabrook was born in and is currently based in South Korea, he grew up in a rural area of Virginia. His experiences as a Korean-American have given him a unique perspective of Korean identity and its relationship to both global and regional communities. Sept. 5th – Oct. 6th Photography Exhibit: New Image Gallery
Training Rules follows the story of JMU alumnae Jennifer Harris and her lawsuit against Penn State athletics siting discrimination based on sexual orientation. Ms. Harris will be available for Q&A after the screening. Sponsored by Madison Caucus for Gender Equality. Monday, October 9, 6:00-9:00p.m. Grafton-Stovall Theatre

Activism in the Academy:

Forming Coalitions and Finding Allies

Black Women in Academia Conference, October 12-13, Madison Union

Visiting Scholars Program Lectures:

Embracing Diversity and Social Justice: The use of creative methods in teaching, scholarship, and service with diverse communities.

Yarneccia Dyson Associate Professor of Social Work, UNC – Greensboro Thursday, Oct. 5th, 7:00 p.m. G010 HBS Building

Covering Race, Ethnicity & Culture in a Divided America

Keith Woods Vice President, Diversity in News and Operations, NPR Tuesday, Oct. 17th, 5:00 p.m. Grafton Stovall Theater

Thinking about Disability through Music Making

Joseph Abramo Assistant Professor of Music Education, University of Connecticut Wednesday, Oct. 18th, 7:00 p.m. G010 HBS Building

Superheroes and Super Athletes: Exceptional blackness and the contradictions of race in Post-Civil Rights America

Jonathan Gray Assistant Professor of English, John Jay College - CUNY Wednesday, Oct. 18th, 7:00 p.m. G010 HBS Building

Homecoming Stompmania

Join the Center for Multicultural Student Services as we celebrate 30 years of serving our campus community! The annual Homecoming Step show features performances from JMU’s Multicultural Greek Life sororities and fraternities. Tickets will be available this fall. Saturday, October 28th, Doors open @ 7 p.m. Show @ 8 p.m. Wilson Hall

Student Focused Events

Connect with CMSS for a variety of opportunities that include:

DEEP Impact Diversity Dialogues

Meet the Greeks

Hillel's Shabbat Dinner

Asian Student Union's Tie-Dye

Filipino Americans at Madison's Family Weekend Potluck

Korean student Association's Sunbae & Hoobae Week

And more!


Cynthia Bauerle, Dean of College of Science and Mathematics

The importance of becoming a more welcoming and inclusive campus community.

Every day I am inspired by the efforts of our faculty and staff to expand access to students who have historically been marginalized in STEM programs, and to build an inclusive community where everyone gets the support they need to achieve their potential. As dean, I’m doing my best work when I can provide support for our faculty to advance these efforts.
The challenge for maintaining a strong national STEM enterprise in the 21st century is to develop all of the talent we have in this country, to engage with every young person who has an interest in science and ensure they have access to the best education.

Meet Jewel Hurt, SGA President

A passionate advocate for all voices.

Hometown: Roanoke, Virginia

Majors: Political Science and Public Policy & Administration

Aspirations: Attend law school and see where things go from there

I am a first generation student.

JMU is the only college I applied to.

I feel inspired to engage with people on the topic of access and inclusion because it's important that everyone feels heard and validated on our campus. It is so important to me that enhancing and engaging diversity was a core principal in my platform for President. Nobody should feel like their voice is going unheard and I will always work to advocate on behalf of those voices.


Paloma Rodriguez now knows college is within her reach thanks to Valley Scholars.

On August 9 and 10, Madison Union served as the venue for a two day Title IX-Sexual Misconduct prevention and response training co-sponsored by the Title IX offices at Bridgewater College, Eastern Mennonite University and James Madison University. Not many colleges and universities have done what Bridgewater College, JMU, and EMU did which is to combine resources to provide a high quality and easily accessible training that taps the vast expertise that already exists on all three campuses and in the community supplemented with a national speaker.

Welcome to the 2017-2018 Preparing Future Faculty Fellows: Kenisha Ford, Physics; K. Lynn Tice, Political Science; Liseli Fitzpatrick, Philosophy & Religion; Zaakira Sadrud-Din, History; Alice Thomas, Sociology; Barbara Franklin, Postdoctoral Fellow - Math Education

Broaden your diversity IQ:

A glimpse of significant dates in Sept.-Oct.

September 1-2 (Evening): Eid Al-Adha, Eid al-Adha is an Islamic festival to commemorate the willingness of Ibrahim (also known as Abraham) to follow Allah's (God's) command to sacrifice his son Ishmael. Muslims around the world observe this event.

September 4: Labor Day in the United States. Labor Day honors the contribution that laborers have made to the country and is observed on the first Monday of September.

September 15 – October 15: Hispanic Heritage Month. This month corresponds with Mexican Independence Day and recognizes the revolution in 1810 that ended Spanish dictatorship.

September 20-22 (Evening): Rosh-Hashanah is the Jewish New Year celebration, marking the creation of the world.

September 29 - September 30: Yom Kippur is the holiest day on the Jewish calendar and is a day of atonement marked by fasting and ceremonial repentance.

October is National Disability Employment Awareness Month, Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and LGBT History Month.

October 9: National Indigenous People’s Day is an alternative celebration to Columbus Day, promoting political correctness in giving recognition to the indigenous populations affected by colonization.

October 11: National Coming Out Day. For those who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender, this day celebrates coming out and the recognition of the 1987 march on Washington for gay and lesbian equality.

This newsletter has been created by the Office of Access & Inclusion to share the good work of academic and administrative departments, students, affinity groups and more in supporting diversity and inclusion at JMU. If you have an article or upcoming event that should be considered for the next newsletter please send us an email:


Created with images by JMU University Marketing Photography Department; Step Afrika!; Ryan Berry Productions

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