Our Staffing Model
In order to align our “what we do...” with “how we do it...” the Multicultural Resource Center utilizes a collective based staffing model. We understand our work, to promote a multi-racial, racially just community, to be both a process and a goal and recognize our need for cultural norms, practices, and systems that empower us all.
We attempt to work together as a shared decision-making body while recognizing that we still operate within a larger institutional hierarchical structure. With that in mind, we understand that our Director, at times, makes unilateral decisions about the space, its operation, programming, staffing, and more while also intentionally working to include the MRC Staff Collective in decisions that would impact those who utilize the space.
As we work to formulate a new structure that can serve the Amherst community at large with specific emphasis on supporting communities of color, our staffing collective liaisons to various student clubs/organizations, resource centers, and campus partners in order to support, collaborate and share the work of creating a racially just Amherst. The communities that our student staff serve and liaison to are not fixed and will shift accordingly based on the identities, interests, and areas of expertise of our staff.
Our Staff Collective
Ramona East | Race EDUCATION AND PROGRAMS Specialist | she/her/hers
Major: BA in Journalism; BA in Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies
Hometown: Amherst, MA
Hobbies: Reading, painting, and listening to 90's R&B and hip hop music
I’m excited to serve as the race specialist for the MRC. Fostering community is a key aspect in creating comfortability and finding your ground, especially when navigating a new environment. The MRC is a place where students can bring their full selves and connect with others around topics which matter most to them. I uphold accountability, compassion, and growth; all of which are necessary for engaging in conversations centered around social justice. I can't wait for all the fun, learning, and growing that will take place!
Olivia Zheng '20 | she/her/hers | Abroad Spring 2019
Major: American Studies
Hometown: Fremont, CA
On-campus activities: Senior Chair of Asian Students Association, Dance and Step at Amherst College (DASAC), Diversity Intern for Office of Admissions
Hobbies: Watching cooking videos, dancing, spilling tea
MRC Liaison to: Asian Students Association, Office of Admisssion, Peer Advocates, Student Activities
Since I began working for the MRC in my first semester at Amherst, the MRC has become such a grounding community for me, the closest thing to a home on campus. I go to the MRC when I want to recharge, feel supported, and learn more about racial justice and POC solidarity in a non-academic setting. I have a particular interest in Asian American racial identity as well as issues of transnational migration and citizenship.
SADE GREEN '20 | SHE/HER/HERS | Abroad Spring 2019
Major: English and Law, Jurisprudence, and Social Thought
Hometown: Long Island, NY
On-campus activities: AAS Senator, Black Student Union (BSU), African and Caribbean Students' Union (ACSU), Amherst Christian Fellowship (ACF)
Hobbies: Writing, working out at the gym, catching up on TV shows
MRC Liaison to: South Asian Students Association, Korean Students Association, the Writing Center
I love the MRC because it is a place where cultural differences are celebrated and people can be themselves, always and in all ways.
zoe akoto '21 | she/her/hers
Major: French and American Studies
Hometown: Kennett Square, PA
On-campus activities: The Indicator, African and Caribbean Students' Union, Black Students' Union, Resident Counselor
Hobbies: listening to podcasts, making puns, obeying the rule of three
MRC Liaison to: African and Caribbean Student Union, Women's and Gender Center, Office of Residential Life
I’ve come to know the MRC as a space for community, where people can decompress and engage with each other while also coming together to address the social issues that prevent our community from uniting fully. I wanted to work at the MRC because I wanted to be a part of creating and cultivating both the space and the conversation, to be a part of a team working to foster understanding and bridge divides at Amherst.
felix wu '21 | he/him/his
Major: Economics and Biology
Hometown: Bethesda, MD / DMV
On campus activities: Men's Soccer, Council of Amherst College Student Athletes of Color (CACSAC)
Hobbies: Reading, napping, listening to music, exploring new places
MRC Liaison to: Council of Amherst College Student Athletes of Color, Middle Eastern Students and Studies Association
For me, the MRC started as a somewhere where I could learn about and be comfortable with my own identity. It has become a home, a place of refuge, a center of community and support, where differences are celebrated and systems of oppression are broken down. Come say hi!
Camille Polk '21 | she/her/hers
Major: Sociology and Law, Jurisprudence, and Social Thought
Hometown: Simi Valley, CA
On-campus activities: Dance and Step at Amherst College (DASAC), Residential Counselor
Hobbies: Dancing around in my room, listening to music, hanging out at the beach
MRC Liaison to: Alumni and Parent Programs
I was introduced to the MRC on the Social Justice and Leadership LEAP trip. I was drawn to the center by the kindness of its directors and staff as well as the resources it offers students of color. I am excited to support women of color and students of mixed race backgrounds.
CY Nguyen '21 | SHE/HER/they/them
Major: Sociology and Asian Languages & Civilizations
Hometown: Garden Grove, CA
Hobbies: Collecting frog figurines, nurturing plants, desperately trying to find good Asian cuisine in Western Mass, writing Yelp reviews
MRC Liaison to: Alumni and Parent Programs
For me, this place is the calm before the storm—before, after, in-between classes. Just a quick pit stop to print or say hi. The MRC is a fluid, ever-changing space that changes to suit my needs. It is a place of education, anti-racism, quiet nap corners with coffee and tea at the ready, and most importantly: constant friendly faces.