The Cross-Cultural Center serves as a community center for students, staff, and faculty to enhance their multicultural awareness and participate in educational programming.
The Cross-Cultural Center was established in 2002 to support the University’s efforts to attract, recruit, and serve both students of color and international students. Our mission is to create and sustain an environment that encourages and embraces the contributions of people from a variety of cultural and ethnic backgrounds.
Our mission at Assumption University is to introduce our students to new ideas, new people, new experiences and a broader worldview. We offer an open invitation to grow.
The Cross-Cultural Center serves as a community center for students, staff, and faculty to enhance their multicultural awareness and participate in educational programming. It is an inclusive and safe space for community members to explore their own identities and learn about other races, cultures, and religions.
Additionally, the Center collaborates and works in partnership with a variety of University departments, clubs and organizations to sponsor awareness programs, lectures, workshops, retreats and performances that explore the shared and unique experiences of the members of our community. The Center staff also work in partnership with faculty to develop programs that enhance cross-cultural understanding and emphasize human dignity, solidarity and the importance of working for justice of all people.
In addition to offering campus-wide programming on diversity-related issues, we advise, advocate and support Assumption’s ALANA (African-, Latino/Hispanic-, Asian-, and Native-American ) Network a student-run organization that plans multicultural programs and activities for students, and participate and collaborate in the ALANA Support Network that connects the various universities in the Worcester Consortium.
For more information, contact Director of ALANA and First Generation Student Success, Judy Heersink
An Invitation to Grow
All students at Assumption are encouraged to stretch their world view and participate in activities and groups that offer valuable insight into other races, ethnicities, and religions.
ALANA (African, Latino/Hispanic, Asian and Native American) Network is a student-run group that meets weekly during the academic year in order to plan and promote student and community activities.
The Network seeks to foster an overall inclusive environment and awareness of diversity among its members and the entire Assumption University community. It also strives to educate and engage the Assumption community through various activities such as; multicultural events, panel discussions, weekly meetings, lectures, performances, etc.
The Network works collaboratively with other student organizations within the Assumption community as well as student organizations in the ALANA Support Network Consortium.
In addition, we honor a faculty member with the ALANA Diversity Award, given to recognize those who demonstrate sensitivity to diversity issues, a commitment to treating all students fairly and incorporating different cultural perspectives into his or her course material.
Latino Heritage Dinner
Annual dinner celebration that includes dancing, live music, delicious Latino foods from the Worcester Community and fellowship with one another as we celebrate the Latino community during Latino Heritage Months.
This event encompasses an array of cultural foods and traditions on campus. Every year, we hold a space that invites various tables of foods to come for students to try. Some foods we’ve had are Haitian rice and beans, griot, plantains, empanadas, Italian cookie and gelato, Cuban yucca, Irish cabbage and ham, Indian breads and Greek baklava.
Native American Speaker Event
In recognition and celebration of Native American History Month, we’ve had the pleasure of having Larry Spotted Crown Mann on campus to share stories and educate the community on the indigenous community and lands.
Black History Month
ALANA commits to a number of programs within Black History Month. Some of these programs include an educational panel on a topical focus (regarding social and racial injustices in the Black community, language in the community, etc.), our Hound N Out improve/comedy night, and our Black History Month Dinner at Taylor Dining Hall.
Lunar New Year
ALANA has been able to host local Lion Dancers to share their skills in Taylor Dining Hall and welcome the New Year with our Asian community students.
Women’s History Month
ALANA is able to host an event honoring and recognizing our women at the Assumption community.
Step and Dance
This is our annual dance competition with various dance teams in the New England area.
End of Year ALANA Banquet
We like to wrap up the year thanking everyone for their hard work and recognizing our student leaders for their energy and work toward the ALANA events and community building.
The Cross-Cultural works closely with the International Student Success Center on a wide range of issues concerning the university application process, applying for student visas, and getting acclimated to the United States and Assumption University.
The Cross-Cultural Center also advises the International Connection student group, which allows international students to communicate with and support each other as they take their educational journey together at Assumption. This group also works collaboratively with the ALANA Network to promote diversity on campus through participation in their annual events. The goal of the International Connection is to promote and enhance international awareness, cooperation, cultural diversity, and dialogue among international students and the rest of the Assumption University and local communities.
W.I.N.G.S. (Women Interested in Networking, Gathering, and Solidarity)
Provides female students of color an opportunity to meet with other students and staff of color and explore networking opportunities, participate in discussions with outside guest speakers, and seek advice and guidance on issues pertinent to women of color. We seek to empower young women of color to explore and engage in the Assumption University community, think critically about their role in the surrounding community, and become informed citizens of the world.
P.A.L.M.S. (Positively Achieving Leadership by Men in Society)
P.A.L.M.S. began in 2009 with a group of charismatic young men of color. They came together to discuss the challenges and negative perceptions that men in general, and specifically men of color face. In P.A.L.M.S., the men discuss a whole range of issues men deal with, ranging from their conduct to living Godly transparent lives. The men are encouraged to be positive role models for the campus community. The group is advised primarily by the Dean of Campus Life but has been co-advised by a Resident Director and a Coordinator from the Cross-Cultural Center. All seniors are given a pin with the P.A.L.M.S. logo at the groups final meeting.
ALANA (African, Latino/Hispanic, Asian and Native American) Network
A student-run group that meets weekly during the academic year in order to plan and promote student and community activities. The Network seeks to foster an overall inclusive environment and awareness of diversity among its members and the entire Assumption University community. It also strives to educate and engage the Assumption community through various activities such as; multicultural events, panel discussions, weekly meetings, lectures, performances, etc.
Reflections on Race Series
A group of Student Affairs and Campus Ministry professionals from a small, predominantly white Catholic University sought to answer: how do we make our University a more welcoming environment for students of color? The Racial Healing Dialogues (Newkirk & Rutstein, 2000), now called Reflections on Race, was adopted, providing faculty and administrators a safe space to discuss race on a continuous basis.
Agents of Change Retreat
Reflections on Race retreats for students have been taking place here at Assumption since the Spring of 2009. The retreats began and continue for a number of reasons. First, they give students the chance to talk about issues of race, ethnicity, and diversity in a safe and non-threatening environment. Second, the focus is not on other people or societal events, but rather what each of us can do (internally) to reduce racism. The philosophy and formal retreat format that we follow states that “racism is a social and spiritual disease” and it is “born out of ignorance and fear, which feed upon each other in a monstrous cycle” and that ALL people of ALL races are negatively affected by this. Third, students have the chance to talk about ways that we can make Assumption University a more welcoming community for everyone.
MLK Day Breakfast at Quinsigamond Community College
This event involves many from the Worcester community that celebrates and recognizes the life of Dr. Rev. MLK Jr.
ALANA Consortium Welcome Back BBQ
(with all ALANA/Multicultural groups and clubs in the Worcester collegiate community like Worcester State, MCPHS, WPI, Holy Cross and Clark University.
Diversity Training and Workshops
Experienced staff are available to provide training and workshops on various topics regarding diversity and multiculturalism. Introductory and advanced sessions can be designed specifically for both small and large groups depending on the group's size, time constraints, and the prior experience that participants have had in discussing issues of diversity and multiculturalism. For more information call (508) 767-7100.
Learn more: First in the Pack Program
Led by a President who was the first in his family to earn a university degree, Assumption University helps first-generation students thrive. A talented faculty, led by a first-year Dean, work with students from New Student Orientation through Commencement to create your academic success story. A dedicated financial advisor will ensure that you find the resources you need to complete your degree at Assumption. Our Career Development and Internship Center will guide you toward a fulfilling career after graduation. A robust alumni network, and the many close friends you make here will ensure that you remain a member of our close-knit community throughout your life.
We invite you to learn more about the special contribution you can make to our community, and the commitment that we have made to students who may be the first members of their family to attend university. We want you to find your home here on campus, and we look forward to sharing the Assumption University experience with you.