Intercultural Facilitators Recognized for ‘Safe Spaces’ Program

The Intercultural Facilitators program has once again been recognized with a national award for its meaningful dialogues about race, culture, gender, class and other issues related to the intercultural experience at Loyola Marymount University.

The program received the Bronze Award in the 2015-16 NASPA Excellence Awards in the International, Multicultural, Gender, LGBTQ, Spirituality, Disability, and other related category. The award recognized the Intercultural Facilitators (IFs) for the “Creating Safe Spaces for Uncomfortable Conversations” dialogue, which aimed to establishing a safe environment to have what can some times be an uncomfortable conversation regarding a variety of issues.

I believe this award is just confirmation that the work the IFs are doing on campus, and beyond, is having an impact,” says Henry Ward, director of Intercultural Affairs for Ethnic and Intercultural Services at LMU. “As colleges and universities nation-wide struggle to manage sensitive diversity issues, we have a committed group of students who are leading the way by creating safe spaces to have courageous conversations.”

The premise of the IFs program, now its third year, is to develop a group of students, highly skilled in principles of facilitation, to effectively facilitate other students in critical cultural conversations.

The IFs are true role models and an inspiration to anyone who has the opportunity to engage with them,” says Rich Rocheleau, Associate Vice President for Student Life. “I am so pleased to see this program out of EIS flourishing in just three short years. I believe the IF program has done an outstanding job of advancing the intercultural ethos of LMU. I can’t think of another student program more deserving of recognition for excellence.”