Buffalo State is sponsoring and hosting the 22nd National Coalition Building Institute (NCBI) Campus Conference, November 12–15. The conference’s theme is "Transforming the Campus Community: Deepening our Humanity in Leadership by Applying NCBI Principles and Skills with Commitment, Courage, and Integrity". Attendees represent campus affiliates of NCBI.
"We are honored to host NCBI," said Gail Wells, community specialist. "Representatives are coming from NCBI's college and university affiliates across the country." Wells is a long-time co-leader of Buffalo State’s NCBI team, along with Kevin Railey, associate provost and dean of the Graduate School. "Buffalo State has been affiliated with NCBI for 20 years. We believe that, as the only SUNY comprehensive college in an urban setting, we have a special responsibility and opportunity to put NCBI’s principles into action."
NCBI is an international non-profit leadership development network dedicated to the elimination of racism and other forms of oppression. "We have worked hard to develop NCBI teams and leaders on campus among students, faculty, and staff," said Wells.
The Buffalo State Coalition Building team leaders, along with Joyce Shabazz and Robert Dungey from NCBI International, also received a grant through the SUNY Office of Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion to host a SUNY-wide one-day exposure workshop during the summer of 2014. The workshop presented the format and goals of various NCBI workshops and explained the path to create a campus team. Supporting those SUNY campuses that choose to develop a local team will be ongoing work throughout this academic year.
In 2007, the college supported a campus-wide "Leadership for Diversity Initiative," headed by Wells and Railey. Since then, Buffalo State has developed and held more than 40 workshops, which have been attended by almost 700 members of the Buffalo State community. In addition, team members have offered workshops in residence halls and in a number of departments.
Some of the workshops have been led by the NCBI leaders who will be on campus for the current conference. "We are looking forward to welcoming Cherie Brown, Joyce Shabazz, Renay Scales, and Bob Dungey, leaders of NCBI who are committed to furthering mutual understanding and respect," said Wells. Brown, founder and executive director of NCBI, will lead the conference. Shabazz is the senior NCBI trainer and Buffalo State Coalition Building Team liaison; Wells and Railey will join her in presenting at the conference. Scales is senior NCBI associate, and Dungey is the director of the campus affiliate program as well as NCBI Canada.
"It is an honor to host people who have been such strong advocates for combating all forms of prejudice and discrimination," said Wells. "We look forward to a very productive conference."
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