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Diversity & Multiculturalism

Diversity students in the NOC

Don’t Cancel That Class!

If you must miss a class due to personal or professional obligations, and you cannot find another faculty member to cover your class, don’t cancel that class!

Rather than sending your students home, bring in a skilled staff member to do programming and take advantage of your valuable class time! These workshops cover a variety of topics and are a great way for students to learn about important resources available to them at Keene State. If you know about your absence at least 2 weeks in advance, fill out the form below to request a substitute program.

Below is a list of the currently offered presentations and workshops, then below that is the form to request a program. If you have any questions regarding the offered programs, please contact Hunter Kirschner at or (603) 358-2639.

Workshops and Presentations Offered

Ask a Dietetic Intern | 1 hr

Q & A discussion about healthy eating and having a healthy relationship with food. Also learn about free nutrition coaching available to all students.

Presented by Tiffany Mathews, Center for Health and Wellness

Ask, Listen, Act (ALA) Gatekeeper Training | 1.5 hr

In the last American College Health Association survey done at KSC (Fall 2016), 37% of our students reported, that in the previous 12 months, they had felt so depressed that it was difficult to function. In that same survey, over 11% reported they had seriously considered suicide. Research has found that at least 80% have NOT sought professional help prior to completing a suicide. Peers are often the first to know that someone is struggling. Therefore, giving our students the tools to help someone in distress is essential to our Keene State community. This interactive program discusses signs and symptoms, how to talk with a friend, and how to refer to appropriate resources.

Presented by a member of the Counseling Center

Be Tobacco Free | 1 hr

interactive presentation that discusses the benefits of being tobacco free as well as the free resources available to you as a student.

Presented by Tiffany Mathews, Center for Health and Wellness

Being Ready for an Emergency at KSC | 45 mins

Nobody plans to have an emergency at a particular day or time, so people are often taken by surprise by unexpected events. Using principles from the social sciences and active bystander guidelines, this presentation describes the 4 key emergencies most likely to occur at KSC (fires, medical emergencies, hazmat spills and active shooters) and the community’s role in responding to them in an engaging and interactive way. Participants will benefit from this education in on campus situations, at home and while traveling.

Presented by Ralph Stuart, Physical Plant

Bible as Literature | 1 hr

The Judeo-Christian Bible is one of the most-quoted works of literature in the world, and a treasure trove of different literary genres. From epic to poem, letter to apocryphal, Ancient Near Eastern biography to Greek Irony, the Judeo-Christian Bible covers the spectrum of genres and writing styles. This presentation helps students look at this influential and important work of literature as just that: literature. It also helps them place it within its own cultural contexts and in the parade of world literature, seeing which works it references, as well as which works reference it, and how.

Presented by Cindy Cheshire, The Newman Center

Biblical Literacy for Secular Culture | 1 hr

In our postmodern society, it’s easy to think that we’ve moved beyond religion in the public sphere, but so many elements of modern media and politics still claim a Biblical basis—often misguidedly so. What’s an informed populace to do? This workshop helps participants from all backgrounds form the tools to recognize common Biblically-based religious arguments in news media and political discussion, understand the texts’ literary background, recognize when texts are being used inappropriately, and be an active participant in such conversations—even if they aren’t personally religious or come from a different tradition.

Faith and spirituality may be personal, but when they’re being used to justify public policy, it’s everybody’s business! Possible topics to focus on can include:

  • Women’s issues and feminism in Biblical texts
  • LGBTQ+ issues
  • “Intelligent design” and understandings of Creation theories in education
  • Religious language in political discourse

Presented by Cindy Cheshire, The Newman Center

Conflict Resolution | 1 hr

This presentation examines different aspects of resolving conflict including communication skills and blockers, conflict styles, the conflict escalator, “I” vs “You” messages, and the problem-solving approach.

Presented by Dr. Leo Sandy, Education Department

Courageous Communication | 1 hr

This presentation involves opening and maintaining communication with people who have opposing views for the purpose of developing mutual understanding and respect.

Presented by Dr. Leo Sandy, Education Department

Cross-Cultural Learning and Adjustment | 1 hr

Cross-cultural learning occurs when we step out of our “comfort zone” and interact with people and/or places different than what we are accustomed to. We have all had cross-cultural experiences. In this session, we will discuss this topic and explore strategies for navigating through some of the challenges these profoundly meaningful experiences can raise within us. We will review briefly the cross-cultural adjustment learning curve also. Students by the end of the session will have a better understanding of what “cross-cultural” means for them.

Presented by Dr. Skye Stephenson, Global Education Office

Gender and Sexual Identity Discussion | 45 minutes

In these discussions, participants will explore the systems of gender and sexuality and the identities within them. Each discussion includes common definitions and questions to foster further reflection and understanding. Please choose one of the topics below.

Topics offered:

  • Nonbinary, gender nonconforming, and transgender
  • Pansexuality and bisexuality
  • Asexuality and agender

Presented by Hunter Kirschner, Office of Multicultural Student Support and Success

“How to Owl” Earn the Best Return, as You Learn! | 1 hr

This is a leadership, experiential learning and self-reflective session. Orientation teams up with the Transition office to offer this dynamic program. The aim is to give any student the opportunity to focus on ways to improve themselves and their educational experience. First year or sophomore courses may focus more on “Settling in with Mad Skills, Self-Advocacy, or seeking student services.” Whereas upper level courses may want more emphasis on “Leadership skills, and Theory to application” . Keene State has a rich tradition of leading students to accomplish great things. We pull wisdom from successful Alumni and student leaders to provide the best practices and inspirations for you to craft your journey! Topics covered include:

  • The power of narrative: Student success stories and understanding how to embrace your own stories
  • Mad Skills Stress Management: Every student goes through positive and negative times. Sharpen up your self-awareness and techniques to better master your emotions.
  • Building resilience: Practice is a foundation of any skill building and learning. Engage in activities to build determination and grit to keep working through challenging practice time.
  • Self-Advocacy: Identifying and strengthening leadership skills: How to perform your best and communicate your needs and wants
  • Finding the right people: Make meeting mentors much easier, hear about student involvement, and know where to find support services for when you get stuck.
  • Theory to application- How to take what you have learned and apply it to your passions and practice outside the classroom.

Presented by Casey Justice and Matt Schmidt, Transition and Parent Programs Office

Identity Signs | 1 hour

This movement- and discussion-based activity focuses on what our salient identities are in particular circumstances. It also explores how do our different identities intersect, interact, and affect our daily lives. This will allow participants to understand the experiences of others as well as demonstrate that even people who identify in the same way can experience different levels of (self) consciousness around a particular identity. This activity requires trust among participants and so is not recommended for the beginning of the semester.

Presented by Hunter Kirschner, Office of Multicultural Student Support and Success

Live Well KSC 101 | 1 hr

interactive workshop that teaches students about the dimensions of wellness, how wellness makes a difference, and learn about on and off campus wellness resources.

Presented by Tiffany Mathews, Center for Health and Wellness

Off-Campus Living | 1 hr

Students decide to move off-campus for many reasons - economics, a desire to cook one’s own food, or that drive towards independence. Whatever the reason might be, shore up the decision-making process with information and tips about the off-campus housing search, how to read and negotiate a lease, what to know about neighborhood mores and city ordinances. For a successful off-campus experience, find out what past students reported about their experiences in the 2017 Off-Campus Survey as well as learning about available resources from both the College and the City.

Through presentation and discussion, students will be able to consider if moving off-campus is the best option for them, and if so, have a broader context to make that decision. For those students already living off-campus, we will also discuss how to best work with landlords and ensuring students are aware of City Ordinances.

Presented by Robin Picard, Residential Life and Housing Services

Positive Psychology and Well Being | 1 hr

This presentation involves a new field in psychology based on research on the bases of wellbeing that focuses on optimum human functioning and flourishing. Topics include gratitude, the hedonic treadmill, flow, and ways to enhance mental and physical health.

Presented by Dr. Leo Sandy, Education Department

Sex in the Dark | 1 hr

Q & A discussion about sexual health from information on protection, pleasure, testing and anything else that might peak your curiosity.

Presented by Tiffany Mathews, Center for Health and Wellness

Social Justice, Advocacy, and the Helping Professions | 1 hr

This presentation focuses on the need and rationale of client advocacy through social action on the part of helping professionals based on the assumption that many forms of stress and dysfunction do not occur in a vacuum and are exacerbated by prejudice and discrimination, glass ceilings, and policies and structures that prevent people from achieving their potentials.

Presented by Dr. Leo Sandy, Education Department

Step UP! Active Bystander Training | 1.5 hrs

This is a prosocial behavior and bystander intervention program that educates students to be proactive in helping others. The goals of Step UP are to: raise awareness of helping behaviors; increase motivation to help; develop skills and confidence when responding to problems or concerns; and ensure the safety and well-being of self and others.

Presented by Tiffany Mathews, Center for Health and Wellness

Theory and Practice of Nonviolence | 1 hr

This presentation examines various aspects of nonviolence including its mechanisms, historical examples, major categories and types, issues, concepts, limitations, and how it differs from violence.

Presented by Dr. Leo Sandy, Education Department

Transgender 101 | 1.5 hours

While transgender people are gaining more visibility in news and popular culture, there are many misconceptions and misinformation about what it means to be transgender. In this introductory workshop, participants will explore the complexities of gender through reflection, small group discussion, and lecture. There will also be an opportunity to address participants’ questions about transgender identities, experience, terminology, and etiquette.

Presented by Hunter Kirschner, Office of Multicultural Student Support and Success

Why Faith & College Life Can (and Should) Coexist | 45 min

Studies show that positive spiritual health correlates to decreased anxiety, increased feelings of peace and belonging, a stronger social group, and higher self esteem in college students. Join the Campus Minister for this look into the intersection of college living and general spirituality. This presentation focuses on the benefits of spiritual health, common objections to intentional spiritual experience from college students, and gives tools for spiritual exploration. No specific religious tradition is encouraged or pushed, and students from all backgrounds and understandings will find something to help them grow.

Presented by Cindy Cheshire, The Newman Center

Don’t Cancel That Class Program Request Form

Please Note

Though we will attempt to accommodate all timely requests, we cannot guarantee that we will be available for every program.