On April 8, CMC’s interim resource center, Mod G, held an open house to allow students to familiarize themselves with the location and purpose of this new space, and above all, to allow them the comfort of being able to express and bask in a sense of belonging via self-care and validation of experiences.
Mod G is the temporary space that serves as CMC’s new resource center; it is one of the trailers next to the Bauer Center, towards the back and close to the Bubble. This resource center aims to provide a space for students of marginalized identities to heal, build a community, find support and familiarity and be empowered on CMC’s campus. It serves to facilitate the education of the broader CMC community regarding various social issues, and in doing so, aid CMC in moving towards becoming more inclusive and aware of what the student body represents and brings to the table.
The process of establishing this temporary space, Mod G, was a long and dynamic one. Since the spring of 2015, student organizers have written letters to and held meetings with the administration to push for the establishment of a resource center and other avenues for on-campus support for students of marginalized identities. At first, the administration was rather receptive and placated the student organizers with promises and a “95% certainty” that both a temporary and permanent resource center would be established in the near future. However, in late August, the administration reneged on their promises of establishing the much-requested resource center despite the willingness and enthusiasm of the students to collaborate with the administration to devise an implementable plan for creating a resource center at CMC.
Having continually met with unresponsiveness and lack of accountability, student affinity groups–CMCers of Color, BSA, SAGA, GenU, and APAM–organized a demonstration last November, marking the beginning of a dynamic approach that students adopted in order to achieve their goal of establishing a safe space at CMC. Finally, after a prolonged period of negotiating, at the end of this past fall semester, the administration set up a safe space: Mod G. The establishment of this resource center took six months. A demonstration by the student affinity groups and a dynamic standard of negotiation with the administration were needed to prod them into following through on their commitments. During this spring semester, the affinity groups, in partnership with ASCMC’s Diversity and Inclusion Board, proposed a vision for a permanent center and presented this plan to the administration.
CMC students are still waiting for the administration to announce a dedicated permanent space for the resource center. However, Mod G is the current temporary safe space available to the student body. PSR Fellows have been hired to organize and plan events for this temporary space, as well as to shape the mission of the forthcoming permanent resource center.
This open house afforded the PSR Fellows an opportunity to welcome students to use Mod G, support the presence of various affinity groups on campus, and talk to students about the possible events in the future to facilitate dialogue and general education of the CMC community.
According to the Mod student staff, there are several events to look out for this semester. One of the major events is office hours, where students and faculty would come together to contribute ideas to the resource center, ask questions, or just hang out with fellow students. Other events include community building events, school-wide dialogues and Forums, and Affinity Group Leader workshops. At their open house, they also launched their “I Pledge” campaign. This campaign asks students: “What are you going to do to make CMC a better and more inclusive and supportive community? Think about it and fill out a card with your response at the resource center!”