SUNY Westchester Community College understands that diversity enriches the lives and the educational experience of our community. Considering, that the Department of Student Involvement strives to develop and offer programs grounded in mutual respect for all people and their individual characteristics or perspectives, such as ethnicity or race, socioeconomic status, religious perspective, political conviction, gender, gender expression, sexual orientation, and varying abilities.
The college’s dedication to supporting a diverse, inclusive and multicultural environment is manifested by the Department of Student Involvement via a series of multicultural programs and celebrations including but not limited to Black History Month, Caribbean Week, Week of Womanhood, Asian Pacific Islander Heritage Month, Juneteenth, Diversity Week, Native American Heritage Month, Holidays Around the World, Juneteenth, Beyond Westchester, Crossroads, Viking S.A.F.E. Spaces, First Gen College Day, Viking Advocacy Trainings, LGBTQIA+ Programs and numerous other experiences that are offered, sponsored and or supported from a student-centered perspective.
Beyond Westchester is a multicultural initiative where international students are invited to tell the SUNY Westchester Community College community about what it’s like to live in their home country and enjoy authentic food, a traditional craft, or receive a special souvenir. This campus-wide event is created three times every semester to highlight a different country and to give students the opportunity to expand their horizons beyond Westchester county. Beyond Westchester brings students together and celebrates our culturally diverse College community.
LGBTQIA+ Resources and Programs
LGBTQIA+ offers programs for people who identify as LGBTQIA+ and allies to foster community, growth, and learning opportunities. This is accomplished through engaging community events, events to celebrate the accomplishments of members of our campus community, and LGBTQIA+ literacy training that creates a safe yet intellectually challenging environment.
Viking S.A.F.E. Spaces
Viking S.A.F.E. (Share A Familiar Experience) Spaces are comfortable spaces for our community members to openly express themselves, share their lived experiences, feel a sense of community and learn from the honest experiences of others. These events are all about coming together as compassionate beings to learn and honor the distinct lived stories of our college’s diverse populations.
A.K.A. – Come and talk with us! We’re here to listen! We’re here to learn!
Viking S.A.F.E. Zones are facilitated by both an affinity group representative and an ally.
For details on specific events please refer to the college calendar during the appropriate time of year for the events listed below.
Black History Month (BHM) – February
Celebrated on the month of February
Held at the college each February, Black History Month (BHM) celebrates the rich cultural, historical, and political contributions of the African diaspora. Annually, BHM features events that can range from opening dinner with a keynote speaker, panel discussions, film screenings, cultural performances, and much more.
Week of Womanhood – March
The Week of Womanhood at SUNY Westchester Community College celebrated on the second full week of March is an annual celebration that highlights the contributions of women to the United States history and the college community. The week is filled with events ranging from workshops, poetry readings, movies, and more!
Asian Pacific Islander Heritage Month (APIHM) – April
Asian Pacific Islander Heritage Month (APIHM), celebrated in April, is an annual celebration focused on promoting awareness of Asian and Pacific Island culture and history among members of the college community. In the past, events have included, cultural performance artists, lectures, banquets, and more.
Lavender Graduation – May
The Lavender Graduation is a special graduation ceremony that honors the achievements of graduating individuals who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, intersex, asexual, and others at SUNY Westchester Community College. The Lavender Graduation Reception provides a safe space to honor those graduating students, not only for their scholastic achievements, but for their successes, challenges, obstacles, and achievements while navigating their time at SUNY WCC as a member of the LGBTQIA+ community.
LGBTQIA+ Viking Rainbow Pride – June
Viking Rainbow Pride is a collaboration of GLOW and Student Involvement LGBTQIA+ to celebrate SUNY WCC’s own version of queer pride. In a virtual event world, this event engages the college community over Instagram live with social media challenges, live speakers and performers from the LGBTQIA+ community, and giveaways.
Flag Day – June 14
During this time, the Department of Student Involvement partners with veteran students and community members to offer a presentation and discussion on the history and symbolism of the American Flag, the act of saluting, and the symbolism and significance of this
Juneteenth Celebration – June 19
Juneteenth, also known as Freedom Day or Emancipation Day is observed as a public holiday in various U.S. states. This celebration honors the day in 1865 when enslaved peoples within Texas and Louisiana finally heard they’d been freed, two months after the Civil War had ended.
In celebration, you’ll have an opportunity to hear from multiple speakers, experience cultural performances, enjoy some music, and much more. Additionally, during our time together we will be honoring those we’ve lost and those that have been taken from us. We hope you can join us for this impactful experience!
Summer Solstice – June 20
The Summer Solstice is the longest day of the year and represents the sun’s “annual retreat.” It’s an excellent opportunity to set intentions and tune in to build a greater and healthier you. During this time, the Department of Student Involvement will offer a holistic experience for the college community to pause and reflect upon their year thus far while experiencing some sort of self-care practice(s).
Latin American Heritage Month – September 15 – October 15
Latin American Heritage Month (LAHM) strives to increase awareness about Latin American histories, identities, cultures, accomplishments, and contemporary issues. From September 15 to October 15, the LAHM committee works closely with members of the college and the surrounding community to celebrate as well as address issues that affect Latin American cultures, within the United States and on campus. Events are open to all.
International Day of Peace – September 21
The International Day of Peace (“Peace Day”) is observed around the world each year on the 21st of September. At SUNY Westchester Community College we see this day as a great opportunity for our community to join with people around the world and make our voices heard for peace! As a community, we will also engage each other in peace-focused activities within our classrooms, offices, student clubs, committees, and or independently. We encourage you to engage with these activities though, at a minimum, we encourage you to take a pause and listen to your breath…that moment of presence alone is a gift and a true example of peace.
National Coming Out Day – October 11
National Coming Out Day is a collaboration of GLOW and Student Involvement LGBTQIA+ and celebrates the diverse stories and experiences LGBTQIA+ have and will share this part of their identities with the people in their lives. This event honors past contributions, present realities, and hopes for the future in the LGBTQIA+ community.
Annual Drag Show – Last Week of October
GLOW’s Annual Drag Show is a collaboration of GLOW and Student Involvement LGBTQIA+. This drag show is hosted by a different nationally famous drag performer each year and celebrates the endless possibilities and creativity of drag while honoring its roots in LGBTQIA+ social justice and history. Local and student drag kings, queens, and everyone in-between performs at this show each year.
Native American Heritage Month – November
November is Native American Heritage Month, or as it is commonly referred to, American Indian and Alaska Native Heritage Month.
At SUNY WCC, we take time this month to celebrate and honor the rich and diverse cultures, traditions, and histories of the native peoples of this land.
We also embrace this month as an opportunity to further connect and educate ourselves while raising awareness about the distinct cultures experienced by the native tribes and indigenous nations of this land.
First Generation College Day – November 8
November 8th is National First-Generation Celebration Day and at SUNY Westchester Community College we observe this day by acknowledging and honoring our First Gen Students with presentations, open discussions and more. A first-generation college student is defined as a student whose parent(s)/legal guardian(s) have not obtained a college degree. This means that the student is the first person within the family working on attaining a degree. We hope you will join us for these experiences as all students are welcome.
Transgender Day of Rememberance – November 20
Transgender Day of Rememberance is hosted by GLOW and honors the lives of transgender individuals lost throughout the year. Through a creative art or social media project, students remember the contributions of transgender people to LGBTQIA+ history and share hope for a better future without transphobia and senseless violence against people who are transgender.
Holidays Around the World – First Week of December
Looking to warm up your heart, connect with others, win some prizes and learn about different holiday traditions from around the world? Then this is the event for you! Join us as we play some games, connect, and close out the semester with some warm hearted fun.