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Profiles - Diversity at PSU

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Meet Stacie Taniguchi Meet Stacie Taniguchi
Staff Member
Alumni Profile: Stevie Lemke '12 Alumni Profile: Stevie Lemke '12
Stevie Lemke '12 was the alumni keynote speaker at the Native American Student and Community Center’s (NASCC) tenth anniversary celebration during Portland State of Mind, and spoke of the support she found within those walls to stay on track to finish college despite adversity she faced throughout her college career. Now a J.D candidate at Lewis and Clark, Stevie knows no matter what she will be working for her native community.
Alumnus
NASCC 10 Year Anniversary Recap
Organization
Rahel Yared Rahel Yared
Staff Member
Larrita Riggs Larrita Riggs
Undergraduate Student
Jane Iwamura: Lecture and Workshop at the Portland Center for Public Humanities Jane Iwamura: Lecture and Workshop at the Portland Center for Public Humanities
Research
Party in the Park Party in the Park
Party in the Park draws thousands of new PSU students to the Park Blocks for a day of free food, entertainment, networking, and information about campus activities.
Undergraduate Student
Renjeng Su Renjeng Su
As the dean of the Maseeh College of Engineering & Computer Science, Renjeng sees a direct connection between learning and diversity in the classroom. In his experience, a college campus is like any other ecosystem, and diversity is necessary to sustain that environment. “Students learn from the entire ecosystem of learning,” he said.
Faculty Member
Jen Armbruster Jen Armbruster
When Jen came to PSU just over a year ago, her family was just about to get a little bigger. Jen and her domestic partner were expecting their first son, and Jen was grateful that her family was recognized by PSU and for how welcome she felt. She also sees that spirit of community extended to students. “Portland State just offers you a niche to fit in.”
Staff Member
Monica Lee Noe Monica Lee Noe
Monica is just starting her journey at Portland State, but she says she clicked with the campus from day one. She transferred here as a junior and enjoys working in the Queer Resource Center, grabbing lunch at the food carts, drawing, and playing songs on anything with strings.
Undergraduate Student
Jackie Alvarado Jackie Alvarado
Jackie started dancing to Mexican folk music at age 3 hasn’t stopped since. She’s proud of her Mexican heritage and equally proud to be the first person in her family who will graduate from college. Jackie appreciates the diverse, friendly environment at PSU and goes out of her way to make new students feel just as welcome as she did.
Undergraduate Student
Rebecca Arcos Rebecca Arcos
It’s a woman’s prerogative to change her mind—something Rebecca has done three times in her choice of career. After studying business and engineering, she found her true calling and majored in social work at PSU. She’s also forged strong friendships with students of very different beliefs and backgrounds.
Alumnus
Smitty S. Buckler Smitty S. Buckler
Skateboarding, biking, surfing, rollerskating—if you can stand on it or it has wheels, Smitty’s all about it. He also loves whipping up something fresh from the community garden and working at the Queer Resource Center. After testing the waters at six different colleges, Smitty says he’s found his home at PSU.
Undergraduate Student
Jimmy Hsu Jimmy Hsu
“What’s up?” When Jimmy was asked that question his first year at PSU, he’d literally look up to see if something was there. His English skills have come a long way since then—and besides the three languages he already speaks, now he’s studying German and Spanish. He credits “Glee” for helping teach him American slang, and PSU for countless opportunities to get involved.
Undergraduate Student
Natalie Caceres Natalie Caceres
Natalie has some pretty lofty goals: she wants to be a studio executive or a White House press correspondent. With an English and Communications double major and a minor in film at PSU, Natalie’s well on her way to making her dreams happen. In fact, she’s already shaken President Obama’s hand (she says he’s not as tall in person).
Undergraduate Student
Felicia Bautista Nelson Felicia Bautista Nelson
Felicia is a PSU student, proud Mexican American—and fledgling fisherwoman. Always up for a new experience, she recently took up fishing and though she was at first a little grossed out by baiting her own hook, she now reels ‘em in like a pro. Felicia says PSU is the perfect environment for people like her who love trying out new things, discovering new cultures, and connecting with their heritage.
Graduate Student
Valesca Walesko Valesca Walesko
When Valesca arrived at PSU from Brazil, she had a serious passion for AC/DC, limited English skills, and a narrower view of the world. Since then, she’s become fluent in English and says the incredible diversity on campus has really opened her mind to new cultures, ideas and opinions. And while she enjoys discovering new music, she still loves rocking out to old-school metal.
Undergraduate Student
Avel Louise Gordly Avel Louise Gordly
Avel is modest about her accomplishments, perhaps because to describe them all would require a day. The first African American woman elected to the Oregon State Senate, she is a dedicated activist, community leader, PSU professor and author—to name just a few. To top it off, she’s a phenomenal storyteller, as we found out in our interview.
Alumnus
Ahmed Bohliqa Ahmed Bohliqa
How do you say “ambition?” How about arriving at Portland State University from Saudi Arabia speaking limited English, and going on to deliver the commencement speech at graduation four years later? Ahmed’s experience wasn’t always easy, but he says that few words can describe the impact the university had on his life.
Graduate Student
Our Community Partner: PCC Native Literacy Program
Spanish-speaking adults who have had little opportunity to recieve formal education come to the Adult Native Literacy Program for basic literacy classes. PSU students volunteer as tutors for the Native Literacy Project.
Community Partnership
Our Community Partner: Native American Youth Association (NAYA)
NAYA works to increase opportunities for healthy activities by promoting family stability, youth camps, support groups, cultural activities, tutoring classes, and special events. PSU students assist in helping the agency grow from a small recreation program staffed by volunteers to a fully sustainable youth community center.
Community Partnership
Our Community Partner: El Programa Hispano
El Programa Hispano provides a comprehensive array of social and mental health services to low-income Latinos who speak little or no English and live in the Portland-area. PSU students use Spanish skills to assist recent immigrants with a variety of social services.
Community Partnership
Our Community Partner: Blazers Boys and Girls Club
The Blazers Boys and Girls Club serves as a resource center for children ages 7 to 18. Students involved in this partnership gain a deeper awareness of what in means to live in a diverse community.
Community Partnership
Our Community Partner: Immigrant and Refugee Community Org
The mission of IRCO is assist refugees, immigrants and multi-ethnic communities to develop self-sufficiency and cultural awareness while affirming and preserving each culture within an ever-changing global environment.
Community Partnership
Our Community Partner: LISTOS Alternative Learning Center
LISTOS serves high-risk Hispanic and other high school students who have left the public school system. Last year, LISTOS educated over 150 young people in order to improve their skills in language, math, social studies and science.
Community Partnership
Our Community Partner: Institute for Judaic Studies
The Institute for Judaic Studies collaborates with PSU to offer lectures and cultural events, including co-sponsorship of visiting scholars and writers and professors, to adults interesting in studying Judaic history and Judaism.
Community Partnership
Our Community Partner: Chinese Consolidated Benevolent Assoc.
Students participate in a Senior Capstone course designed to fulfill a request by the Chinese Consolidated Benevolent Association to create a history of the Chinese culture in Oregon.
Community Partnership
Our Community Partner: Barnes Elementary School
PSU students serve as tutors/classroom aides in a bilingual Spanish/English dual immersion program. The partnership provides PSU students with a vehicle for using their language skills in a real-world setting while filling a critical need for Spanish-speaking volunteers.
Community Partnership
Our Community Partner: Leaders Roundtable
Students in Applied Linguistics teach English as a Second Language (ESL) evening classes for adult refugees and immigrants in local public schools. PSU students get teaching practice under supervision; adult ESL students get free classes in survival English.
Community Partnership
Our Community Partner: Multnomah County Health Department
Poder es Salud/Power for Health is a collaborative research project designed to increase the capacity of members of the African-American and Latino communities to identify health issues and address health promotion and disease and injury prevention.
Community Partnership
Our Community Partner: Portland State University Stroke Camp Our Community Partner: Portland State University Stroke Camp
Students write grant proposals to solicit funding for programmatic support as part of the Grantwriting for Non-profits course curriculum under the Institute for Non-profit Management.
Community Partnership
Our Community Partner: Winners on Wheels of Oregon Our Community Partner: Winners on Wheels of Oregon
Students work with Winners on Wheels of Oregon in order to learn about the needs of people in wheelchairs and what life is like for both the children and their families. Students interact directly with children and also perform fundraising.
Community Partnership
Our Community Partner: Glenfair Elementary School Our Community Partner: Glenfair Elementary School
Students participate in a Native Literacy program, enabling them to witness firsthand the challenges faced by schools with large populations of children for whom English is not the main language spoken.
Community Partnership