On Thursday March 8, 2012, Student Life and Leadership held its third annual Diversity Dinner in the Oak Room at Salt Lake Community College’s Taylorsville Redwood Campus.
The event was held to promote dialogue about issues involving diversity, ethnicity, and multiculturalism.
“The purpose of the dinner is to get people to broaden their horizons to talk to people they might not get the chance to talk to every day,” says James Morgan, Student Life and Leadership diversity chair who organized the registration for the dinner.
The dinner environment was set up with people from different cultures being seated next to each other. This was done to encourage communication between people who might not normally get a chance to interact.
During the dinner, attendees were asked to address certain questions about themselves concerning diversity.
- The first question people were asked to discuss at their table was “in terms of diversity how would you describe yourself?”
- The second was to tell the table about an important experience they had that relates to their identity.
- The final question was to discuss what could be done to foster understanding of people who are different from one another.
These questions kept the theme of the dinner going and kept the focus on topics of diversity and understanding differences.
“SLCC is the most diverse institution in the state of Utah. We need to be able to understand different cultures, to learn how to facilitate a way to learn about different people and celebrate our similarities,” says Doctor Abio Ayeliya, who began the Diversity Dinners. “Being different is not a bad thing, and it is important for students to learn to understand that.”
Over 160 people attended the event. According to Morgan, this is a significant increase form prior events, which averaged about 120 attendees.