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OPEN Task Force luncheon held to discuss equity and diversity at WVU-Parkersburg

Published: Sep. 29, 2021 at 7:11 PM EDT
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PARKERSBURG, W.Va. (WTAP) - Officials and students from West Virginia University at Parkersburg hold a luncheon at Blennerhassett Hotel with the Chancellor of Higher Education in West Virginia.

The luncheon was a part of the commuter college’s “OPEN task force.”

The group is a collection of school officials, from President Dr. Chris Gilmer to Dr. Steven Smith.

And features students of different races, ages and genders.

“And I wanted a really diverse group. Diverse in race, sex, gender, sexual orientation, first-generation status, differently-able people. All to come together and have an informational session. The chancellor’s committed to breaking down barriers. But she needs to hear what those barriers are,” says Gilmer.

Gilmer says that he wanted the chancellor to see how the group is taking steps to making the school a more diverse campus for all people.

“Student success is the center of everything we do in the community college system. We want to make sure that all of our students are successful. The only way that we can know how to make sure all of our students are successful is to hear from them about what’s causing them to be unsuccessful and to stomp out of the system,” says chancellor, Sarah Tucker.

Dr. Gilmer says that it is important to bring the student voice to the forefront of the conversation when talking about diversity and equity, including traditional and non-traditional students.

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