By Molly Igoe
It is the start of another academic year at Washington College, and along with the changes in class schedules and students, there have been many staff changes.
Dr. Xavier Cole has served as the vice president for Student Affairs since this past May, and has now taken on the temporary role as the director for Residence Life, previously held by Carl Crowe.
Dr. Cole said, “I was the director of Residence Life at my last job, so I have experience in this area. Taking on this position simply adds to the complexity of my current role, and like I said, it is temporary.”
He praised the support he has been getting from the staff in Student Affairs, especially from David Steubing and Amy Sine, who are both assistant directors of Residence Life. Sine is replacing former assistant director Sarah Wright.
“The staff in Residence Life will continue to do their jobs during this temporary period, and remain in charge of the same responsibilities they held before I stepped in,” he said
Crowe, the former director, said of leaving, “I was originally hired at WC to build the Residence Life program, and I did just that. During my tenure, the Residence Life program was completely enhanced, themed housing programs created, and additional professional staff added. Now that the infrastructure is in place, I think it’s time for a new perspective on the next steps.”
Dr. Cole emphasized the important role Residence Assistants will have in helping to hire a new Residence Life director.
He said, “The Residence Assistant staff input is important for our candidate search along with student feedback. With their help, a new person should be in place by this upcoming spring to take on this position.”
Dr. Cole said, “We are looking forward to finding the right person for Residence Life and as the associate dean. This is a great opportunity for a new person to have.”
Crowe will take on the position of director of Residence Life and Housing at Suffolk University in Boston and is glad that it “will put me in regular contact with students on a more consistent basis,” he said. “Over the next few months, I’m looking forward to getting my youngest son acquainted with his new school, helping my oldest find a college, helping my wife become acquainted with the arts scene in our new town, and, of course, getting to know Boston.”
Among the returning staff there are many new faces, including Lisa Jones, the new Executive Assistant to VP of Student Affairs. Don Stanwick is the new director of Dining Services, taking over for Zena Maggitti.
Ahyana King has been named the new director for the Office of Intercultural Affairs, previously known as the Office of Multicultural Affairs and formerly directed by Darnell Parker.
Parker is now the associate vice president for Student Affairs and Title IX coordinator for Case Western Reserve University in Ohio.
King said, “The Office of Intercultural Affairs works to foster an inclusive campus community, one which supports students, esteems and celebrates their identities, and promotes their success. As the new director for this redesigned office my goal is to educate and empower students to be change agents on campus, partnering with our office with their ideas, gifts, and talents to foster an inclusive campus community, supportive of their peers, respecting and celebrating their identities, and helping with their success.”
“Students can get involved in a variety of ways, including becoming an employee with the office, attending events hosted by the office serving as an overnight host for the spring semester multicultural perspective student visit program, attending the community lunches that will be held in early October and November, as well as joining and supporting the various student clubs and organizations on campus.”
King discussed the importance of the Safe Space program supported by the Office of Intercultural Affairs.
“Safe Space is two fold, there are the stickers that are usually rainbow colored and sometimes say ‘Safe Space’ and may be in the shape of a triangle. They communicate that the space is one that is committed to being free of any type of harassment or anti-LGBTQ violence or bias. Safe Space is also a training provided that talks about creating an environment (physically and non physically) that is free of heterosexism, bias, discrimination, bullying, harassment, etc. towards members of the LGBTQ community. It also educates attendees or terminology.”
King summarized the important role the office plays on campus in regards to acceptance and diversity. She said, “My hope is that the work of this office is seen as work of this campus, that all of us are in community together, valuing every member of our campus community in their entirety.
The Open House for the Office of Intercultural Affairs will be Sept. 16 in Caroline House.
Heather Morris will no longer serve as director of Student Activities.The Office of Student Activities will now fall under the heading of Office of Student Engagement. Nick Spicer serves as director of Student Engagement and Kellyanne Ford serves as assistant director.