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Spotlight

Capilouto Forms Committee to Recommend Long-term Mural Resolution
By Jay Blanton

University of Kentucky President Eli Capilouto has formed a broad-based committee to recommend a long-term resolution for a mural in UK's Memorial Hall that has sparked dialogue across the campus.

The Mural Committee is co-chaired by Melynda Price, a professor of law and director of the African American and Africana Studies Program at UK, and Terry Allen, interim vice president for Institutional Diversity.

"I have asked these dedicated members of our campus and broader community to move expeditiously, but thoughtfully, in recommending a long-term step with respect to the mural," Capilouto said. "Our campus has benefited greatly from the discussion fostered by the mural, its history and its meaning. Now, it is time to place it in a more historically accurate and complete context. It is an important work for our campus and our Commonwealth. But it can no longer be displayed in a context that is incomplete or one that unintentionally marginalizes members of our community.

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UK Program Helps First-Generation, Low-Income Students Navigate College
Story by Linda B. Blackford, Lexington Herald-Leader

When Gloria Maldonado was still at Bryan Station High School, she remembers college reps coming to talk about the University of Kentucky. The first in her family to plan to go to college, "I didn't even know what an alumni was," she recalled.

That's one of the many almost imperceptible challenges that face low-income and first-generation college students, a vocabulary that often doesn't include them.
"Everything about college was new to me," said Maldonado, 21, who's now a senior at UK majoring in dietetics.

Maldonado won a Charles Parker scholarship to attend UK and soon found refuge at Student Support Services, which helps first-generation, low-income and disabled students cope with everything from financial aid to tutoring.

"It's things like understanding what a book voucher is or how to talk to a professor," Maldonado said. As a single mother to now 5-year-old Azila, she needed academic and moral support to get through her freshman year. Today, she is the coordinating tutor for the office.

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SSS Offers Key to Success to Unprepared Freshmen - Story and video from UKNOW

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Faculty Input Sought for Proposed Center for Equality and Social Justice
By Gail Hairston

A team of faculty from across campus have developed an initial proposal to create a University of Kentucky Center for Equality and Social Justice.

Inspired and led by psychology Associate Professor Chrisitia Spears Brown with Robert E. Harding Jr. Professor of Law Melynda J. Price, the goal of the center is to create a space on campus to explore issues of equality and social justice from multiple perspectives, disciplines and research traditions.

The genesis of the center comes at a time when institutions across the country are debating issues of equality, diversity and inclusion.

At UK, those conversations are taking place across the campus among faculty, students and staff, allowing for real opportunities for greater change. Brown, Price and other involved faculty believe the creation of such a center -- from colleges across the campus -- will further allow the university to harness the collective expertise of its faculty in driving positive changes for a more inclusive culture and society.

Late last semester, Brown and Price posed their idea to Mark Kornbluh, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, who responded with enthusiastic support. Kornbluh presented the idea to Terry Allen, interim vice president for institutional diversity, who offered his endorsement for efforts to develop the Center for Equality and Social Justice that would involve members of the UK community, colleges and departments from across the campus.

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