Center for Racial Justice and Inclusive Excellence (CRJIE)

Kente Ceremony
Group of students at pass through the pillars
Office of Equity and Inclusion Student Workers
Peer Mentor Program

Some Major CRJIE Activities

  • Annual Diversity, Equity and Inclusion and Social Justice Workshops and Trainings

  • Expanded Mentoring Program with stipends for mentors  

  • Endowed Speakers Series on a variety of DEI and Social Justice Topics 

  • Reunions 

  • Internships – paid and credit bearing  

  • Faculty–in-Residence Programs 

  • Scholarships to support student academics  

  • Student staff salary support 

  • Mini grants for campus community members to sponsor and facilitate topics related to DEI, Social Justice, Community Building and Belonging, Health and Well-being, Trauma and Self-Care etc. 

  • Student Diversity Leadership Conference


Advisory Committee

  • Bernadette Tiapo, Ph.D., VP Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion/Chief Diversity Officer, Advisory Committee Chair

  • Dr. Howard Ashford, Interim Director CRJIE and Assistant Professor, Africana and Latinx Studies

  • Dr. Gretchen Sorin, Director & Distinguished Service Professor of Museum Studies

  • Dr. Trudy Thomas Smith, Professor, Chemistry & Biochemistry

  • Dr. Penina Kamina, Professor, Elementary Education & Reading

  • Dr. Betty Wambui, Professor, Africana and Latinx Studies

  • Dr. Rhea Nowak, Professor, of Art & Faculty Center Director

  • Dr. William Walker, Associate Professor, Cooperstown Graduate Program

  • Andrew Stammel, J.D., Affirmative Action Officer and Title IX Coordinator

  • Dr. Tracy Betsinger, Professor, Anthropology

  • Anne Winchester, Administrative Assistant

  • Dr. Susan Goodier, Assistant Professor, History

"If colleges and universities are to best represent what they aspire to be--more diverse, more equitable and inclusive--they must acknowledge, interrogate, and dismantle the systems and structures that have been created and evolved over time which sustain inequities impacting the living, learning and work environment of students, faculty and staff. We must do our “home” work and demonstrate what it means to dismantle racism." Excerpt from a statement by NADOHE titled: Accountability: A Step Towards Justice, April 21, 2021 – Ford Lauderdale, FL.

Current Initiatives

Harriet Tubman Freedom Award

The Center for Racial Justice and Inclusive Excellence seeks nominations for the 2023 Freedom Award.

The Harriet Tubman Freedom Award is awarded to a faculty/staff member who goes above and beyond to provide students with the opportunity to cultivate a well-rounded understanding of the global society, provide seen and unseen student support, and serves as a beacon of hope that an inclusive society is a tangible reality.

Recipient awarded at the 2023 Kente Graduation Ceremony. Nominations are due December 21, 2022.

  1. Nominees must be nominated by a current SUNY Oneonta student/employee.
  2. Nominating statement must be at least 500 words (student) and 750 words (faculty/staff).
  3. Submit statements to Anne Winchester.
Tubman poster

Kente Awards

Ida B. Wells/Dolores Huerta Civil Rights Advocacy Award
Courageous advocacy of equality and civil rights

Oprah Winfrey/Mumia Abu-Jamal Leadership & Courage Award
Motivates others to action and demonstrates courage and speaks out in the face of opposition.

Nuyorican Poets/Guerilla Girls New Direction Award
Creates new avenues and space of expression and awareness.

Sor Juana Ines de la Cruz/Booker T. Washington Higher Learning Award
Embraces higher education to its fullest and sets examples for others.

Rigoberta Menchu Indigenous Languages Advocacy Award
Community engagement and advocacy of linguistic, ethnic, and racial diversity.

Mariama Ba African Feminist Literature Award
Engagement with intersectionality in the quest for liberation and creative expression,

Mae Jemison/Percy Julian Exploration Award
School of Social Sciences student excelling in science, technology, or science education.

Dr. Ralph R Watkins Scholar Award
School of Liberal Arts and Business student who excels academically, shows a passion for their work, and an intellectual curiosity.

Pura Belpre/Ann Lowe/Bill Russell Multicultural Award
School of Education, Human Ecology, and Sports Management student who has shown a desire to engage marginalized populations and expand their understanding of the global society.

kente awards

Evening with Eduardo Chavez/Cesar Chavez Film & Documentary Series

Cesar Chavez Film & Documentary Series

April 3,4,5,6

Cesar Chavez, A biography of the civil-rights activist and labor organizer Cesar Chavez.

Two Screenings, Q & A following.

April 3, 2023 3pm-5pm Red Dragon Theater, Hunt Union

April 3, 2023 7pm-9pm, Freedom Room, Lee Hall

Chicano! The struggle in the fields, the land is rich.

Two Screenings, Q & A following.

April 4, 2023 3pm-5pm Planetarium, Perna Science Center

April 4, 2023 7pm-9pm, Freedom Room, Lee Hall

Fighting for our lives, Delano Nanongs.

Two Screenings, Q & A following.

April 4, 2023 3pm-5pm Red Dragon Theater, Hunt Union

April 4, 2023 7pm-9pm, Great Room, Lee Hall

Hailing Cesar

Eduardo Chavez, Director, Activist, Podcast host & grandson of Cesar Chavez screening his documentary.

April 6, 2023, 7pm-9pm, IRC #3 doors open at 6:45pm. President Cardelle will moderate the Q&A.

Afternoon with Eduardo Chavez

April 6

Discussion at 1:15pm in IRC #1 on Identity and Activism.

Workshop at 3pm in IRC#1 on Identity and Documentary Filmmaking.

Open to all students. Scan the QR code to reserve a seat for all of the events.

Email or for more information.


2023 Kente Graduation Ceremony Registration

Deadline: February 6, 2023

Graduating Seniors in Spring, Summer, or Winter 2023.

If you have any questions please contact Howard Ashford,

Kente registration


An Engaging Evening with Nikole Hannah-Jones. 
Truth, History, Accountability, and the 1619 Project. Moderated by: Dr. E. Howard Ashford.

Thursday, November 3 7- 8:15 PM
Dewar Arena, Alumni Field House
Book Signing 8:30- 9:00  PM

Selena Quintanilla Perez: A Tribute

Remembering the life and influence of Selena in Latin American and U.S. culture.
Movie and Music
October 12, 2022
6pm-8pm (Movie)
8pm-9pm (Music)
CRJIE - Great Room
Snacks Served

Hosted by Prof. Howard Ashford of the Africana and Latinx Studies Department and sponsored by the Center for Racial Justice and Inclusive Excellence.

selena poster

Latinx Heritage Month 

Latinx Kickoff SUNY Oneonta


Announcing the Center for Racial Justice and Inclusive Excellence

The Office of Equity and Inclusion is pleased to announce an important step toward advancing inclusive excellence, antiracism, social justice, diversity, equity and inclusion at SUNY Oneonta.

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