The three President’s Commissions on the Status of Women, Cultural Diversity and Inclusion,
Gender and Sexual Diversity are three programs that try effect students positively across
campus. All commissions, while independent, work very closely together.
All chairs are nominated and confirmed by the current Millersville University President, and
have an initial 3-year term, which can be renewed for another 3-years. The commissions are
not only made of the university’s faculty, but local members of the Lancaster community as
well as Millersville students, who have an initial 1-year term.
The current chairs of the three President’s commission stated, “We want diverse
representation on all three commissions, not just the primary focus of those in the mission
statement.” To represent the community, the commissions take into account with an assort of
member no matter what ethnic, racial, religious, or class categorization.
Although all three commissions work across the entire campus the central meeting
facility is in the Washington House on the corner of George Street opposite to the Student
However, monthly meetings for individual commissions is different. The President’s
Commission of Cultural Diversity meets commonly in the University Room in Gordinier Hall,
whereas the Women’s Commission and President’s Commission of Gender and Sexual Diversity
have their monthly meets in locations at McNairy Library. These meeting revolve around
discussions on budgets and representation of missions through open houses, wellness events,
Some recent endeavors that were put together by all the commissions include the
recent Social Justice Day events, as well as the inviting of the mental health advocate,
Chamique Holdsclaw, last month. However, there are some fixed funding that the commissions
do include MLK Breakfast, Hazel Jackson lectures, student organization sponsored events,
graduation student of color receptions, field trips, and many others. However, student
organization have to do their application ready, as the budget has to be equitable.
Millersville’s Women’s Commission
The President’s Commission on the Status of Women, originally the Women’s Commission, is
the oldest of the commissions as it was created in 1988, and highly purposed on enact of Title
IX. Millersville website defines Title IX as follows:
“Sexual violence that occurs in the educational setting (on or off campus) implicates a federal civil rights law called Title IX of the Higher Education Amendments of 1972, which prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in education programs or activities and which triggers certain responsibilities on the part of the University. Educational institutions that receive federal financial assistance are covered by Title IX. Since Millersville University is one of those institutions, ALL students are covered by Title IX.”
Its current chair is Dr. Beth Powers. The commission was formed to consider the status of women, as well as women’s issues that
end up reflecting as Human Rights issues. Things the commission looks at include gender
This eventually led to the creation of the Women’s Commission in 1988.
Students involved on the women’s commission Currently there are female, male, and
transgender student members.
The Women’s Commission works with associations outside of campus like YWCA as well as
a recent additional association brought to campus, the American Association of University
Women, with some special help establishing the first chapter on campus from Millersville’s Dr.
Jill Craven. Every other year The Women’s Commission send two representatives to the PASSHE
Women’s Consortium every other year, two faculty or two student staff. And projects are
created by the attendees to support staff of commission.
The current initiative being worked on by the commission is the recent Climate Survey,
involving childcare and needs, staff getting professional development for faculty, and making
the campus has a safe climate for all people. The survey address dating violence, fighting hate-
speech, and well-being.
President’s Commission of Cultural Diversity and Inclusion:
The President’s Commission of Cultural Diversity and Inclusion is the second oldest of the
Commission, and is currently chaired by Dr. Leonora Foels
There are several student organizations that work with the commission including, African
Student Association, Black Student Union, Society for Latino Affairs, and National Association
for the Advancement of Colored People. The promoting given by these organizations, as well as
the Lancaster community members, for the commission’s mission of racial and cultural
diversity, advocating, expanding and understanding the racial differences, cultural programing,
and speakers. The commission has the job of addressing certain current policies for the
president of the university related to race or culture, in which there is advisement debating
how such policies and diversity issues that could affect certain students.
The commission’s current initiative is known as the Summer Research Initiative: 5-week
research period for undergraduate that are underrepresented racially and ethnically work
closely with faculty. They are going to have sign-ups for applications in the Spring.
President’s Commission on Gender and Sexual Diversity
The President’s Commission on Gender and Sexual Diversity focuses on issues of sexual
orientation, and gender identity. It is youngest of the commissions, as it is only five years old. Its
current chair is Dr. Tiffany Wright. The commission gains its students mostly voluntarily, but
there is always a general graduate and undergraduate student, as well as the student president
of Gender and Sexual Alliance, who always has a designated seat on the commission. All
inclusive, major does not matter. The commission added a substantial amount of $3000 for the
Millersville University Pride Festival every Fall. There is also funding for a LGBT Series of
speakers coming to campus, last Spring they brought the first judge of Philadelphia to
outwardly say he was LGBT. The current initiative that the commission is working with
organizations on campus, including Human Resources and Registrar’s Office, to make a
Preferred Name Policy. A form is in the making for students to have a preferred name, and
computer systems will these for classes and other programs, but complications will still appear
in financial aid, major designation, and clearances.
The ultimate goal of the three commissions is to have a systemic and interpersonal way of
serving all students well, social justice, responding to call to take action, and keeping mind of
identity factors of those people represented.